Change is the Constant

By Kathy McGowan

“The only thing that is constant is change”


My, my, my, but have we been surrounded with change?!

If change is truly the only constant, then we had better get comfortable with it. We are swirling around in it. It is so, that currently, if someone asks me how I am doing with the changes, I have to ask, “What changes?” because I cannot assume that know which things they are talking about!

Change can be so scary. It feels as though so much is at risk. What is certain is that things will be different. When thinking about what might be different, we begin to ask questions about what we might lose. There will be loss. Where there is loss, there will be grieving.

When confronted with big change many questions go through our minds:

What will I do?

How will others react?

Will I have a role in what is being created?

What am I going to lose?

During times of change, it is important to know that we will be having emotions that might surprise us. Not only does the world feel unpredictable, we might feel uncertain of ourselves too. It is up to us to as my daughter says “feel the feels.” Yes, we must allow ourselves to feel and then to figure out what we are going to do with these feelings.

I just heard an interesting episode of the podcast “Invisibillia” that talks about a new (at least new to me) way to thinking about human emotions. One of the take-aways from this for me was that we have way more control of our emotions that our culture leads us to believe. Whether that is true or not, I will let you explore for yourselves, but I do know that we have choices around our actions, even during times of high emotions.

As Unitarian Universalists it is up to us to be intentional about living our values. We must reflect on them, look for ways to embrace them in times of stress and hold them closely in our relationships.

During these times of change can you embrace Love, Hope, Courage, Justice and Joy?

While you are asking yourself many questions about where you will fit into the “new” that is being created might I suggest a few more questions to consider?

What is possible?

What could we achieve?

What might happen that would be exciting?

How might things be better?

What new relationships could be formed?

We cannot be afraid of the future or our differences. We must have courage and stay open to the possibilities that the new ways may hold. In order to do that we must first listen to one another. There is an old saying that “God gave us two ears and one month for a good reason.” So listen, listen, listen.

A blessing for these times:

May we listen well so that we may learn

May we love fully so that we may receive love

May we be joyful in our interactions with others

May we be open to new possibilities and insights

May we let our minds and hearts change so that the whole world might be better.

About the Author

Kathy McGowan

Kathy McGowan has been on the Congregational Life Staff for the Southern Region of the Unitarian Universalist Association since 2013. In that time her areas of focus have been in systems thinking, theology, conflict, intercultural sensitivity, and staff supervision. She is one of the primary...

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