Change and the Unchangeable
Ever since our time in the States, I have thought a lot about change. It is funny how when you have been away from a place for a long time and then you go back, you notice how everything has changed. Now, you may not be able to put your finger on exactly what it is that has changed, but you know everything is different. People have grown, you have grown, quite honestly, 'You can never go home again.' That isn't to say you can't make the place home again, but that it isn't the same place you left.
As I thought of about this, I was reminded of an observation that Bavinck makes. He notes:
All that is creaturely is in process of becoming. It is changeable, constantly striving, in search of rest and satisfaction...
In our bones, we know this to be true. We know that change is all around us. Whether it be the growth a young child or the transitions to new jobs, towns, work responsibilities, everything is always changing. The change can be uncomfortable and disconcerting. It can cause us to fret and worry about the future. As Bavinck says we are 'constantly striving, in search of rest and satisfaction.' Striving is never fun. It often hurts.
Bavinck goes on in that quote and says this:
All that is creaturely is in process of becoming. It is changeable, constantly striving, in search of rest and satisfaction, and finds this rest only in him who is pure being without becoming. This is why, in Scripture, God is so often called the Rock. We humans can rely on him; he does not change in his being, knowing, or willing. He eternally remains who he is. Every change is foreign to God. In him there is no change in time, for he is eternal; nor in location, for he is omnipresent; nor in essence, for he is pure being.
As I have reflected on and thought about the changes going on in my life, as I considered the changes that had occurred back home, I was reminded of this truth. Ultimately, in a world that is constantly changing, as a person who is continually seeking rest and satisfaction, true rest and satisfaction can only be found in God.
This is why the Westminster Shorter Catechism (Q. 86) tells us that saving faith receives and rests upon Christ alone for salvation. The Christian life is a life lived by faith. It is a life where we know that we change is occurring and will occur. It is a life that wants to see change because we need to grow up into the fullness of Christ. Yet it is a life were find our rest in the only place where rest can be found, God who has revealed himself in Jesus Christ (Col 1:15-23; Heb 1:1-4). We can rest in Christ because he is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Her 13:8). With the world around us constantly in flux and changing, the only hope we have is to find rest and satisfaction on the Rock (1 Cor 10:4). Resting in Christ does not mean that we won't change and the world won't change, but that even while everything is changing, the unchangeable God holds us and sustains, that the immutable God is transforming us in the image of his Son through the power of his Spirit.
As I look around and see change, as I contemplate my future and that of my family, my friends, and the world, the only hope that I have is to throw myself upon Christ, to find my rest and satisfaction with him. This is this truth that sustains us in the midst of the uncertainty of life, in the midst of an ever changing world.
[A] deep chasm separates Gods's being from that of all creatures. It is a mark of God's greatness that he can condescend to the level of his creatures and that, though transcendent, he can dwell immanently in all created beings. Without losing himself, God can give himself, and, while absolutely maintaining his immutability, he can enter into an infinite number of relations to his creatures. - Herman Bavinck