What does it mean to be flexible? Able to bend easily without breaking; not stiff or rigid; adaptable, adjustable to change to suit the circumstances.
This is a clearly something that Christian women need whatever their calling, whatever their age. It is a spiritual trait, given by the Spirit, not something we can generate ourselves. What is it that makes us flexible, able to bend without breaking? It is our faith. And to maintain flexibility, what do we have to do? Exercise our faith. Practice what we know. Use our opportunities.
When changes in our circumstances arise, we must remind ourselves that He has ordained all things, that He loves us, and that whatsoever comes to pass is for our good and His glory. This is our faith.
When do we need flexibility? Well, when donâ€™t we? We need to adapt to change pretty much day in and day out. Our mothers needed it when they were raising us, and we’ve needed it all along. Each new milestone in our lives requires flexibility. Whether it is adjusting to school, a new job, marriage, courtship, singleness, pregnancy, childlessness, illness, wealth, or poverty, success or failure, we need to limber up, adjust and adapt to the changes in our lives. As we age, we especially want to maintain flexible spirits and not grow stiff and rigid, unwilling to change, stuck in our old ways of doing things.
We can imitate our own mothers in this. How did they adapt to change? When your dad was transferred, or when he changed jobs. When times were tough or when the kids were sick. When dad was gone for a long time. Are there things your mother did to make the transition smoother for you? To make it a jolly time instead of calling it a stressful time and using that as an excuse to complain? Did you notice how hard it was for her? Have you thanked her for those years of bending? What have you learned from her that was good? We are always so quick to remember the failures or the wrongs. But what were the successes and the rights? Imitate her in those.
Some of you have done some pretty amazing things in your lives, things you didn’t think you would be up to, things that seemed impossible at the time, but you pressed through. I know some of your stories, stories of faith and courage, of trusting God through difficulties, loneliness, sickness, bereavement. But whatever the details of your story are, it is characterized by your response of faith.
Tests and trials are just that: tests. God tests your faith. And weâ€™ve all been students and we understand how to take tests. God tests us on the material He has given us to study. When you are tested, remember to apply your faith. God is checking to see if you have learned to be flexible, limber, adaptable to new or hard circumstances. Can you trust Him? If you have learned to trust Him in the little things, the minor changes, you will be able to trust Him in the big changes.
Change requires faith. And faith makes us flexible women who can submit to God and be grateful as changes come, as seasons change. Bending but not breaking. Not stiff necked, but humble, teachable, approachable, quick to forgive, and quick to seek forgiveness. When the circumstances change, faith can adjust and adapt.
When change comes, and it is uncomfortable, we have a Comforter. Look to Him to help you adapt to the change. Make a point of being grateful. Do you duty without being stiff and complaining. Be a good steward of the changes that God brings into your life. There will be more. Each one is an opportunity to flex, to exercise your faith, to become adjusted to the change God has brought you for your good.