I've been through two major life changes or “conversions”:
A “food conversion” and a Christian conversion. Don't leave yet! I won't go all weird on you, but even if you haven't been through either of those types of life changes, chances are you've had other times in your life when you've noticed a big difference in yourself with new convictions as far as how you wanted to live from that point on. No matter what type of life changes you went through, I'll bet you've noticed some of the same challenges that I have, and if so you're not alone…
Here are 5 ways all life changes are the same:
- After going through both conversions, I wanted to tell EVERYONE about it! These newfound truths were so exciting, I thought the world should know. There's no doubt that in both cases I irritated people like crazy, and probably still do now and then. It took some time and growing to realize that everyone isn't ready or willing to hear what I wanted to share, just because I wanted to share it. Sometimes, just like ‘the old me', they aren't “there” yet and may not care to ever be there, either. (It wasn't that long ago that I didn't care about things like trans fats and high fructose corn syrup on ingredient labels either.) Now I try to be a better listener instead because everyone has something to teach us, no matter where they are on the journey.
- Whenever you make big life changes, you'll be attacked for it. Sometimes in big ways, but at the very least you'll probably be accused of going “overboard” like I was. Although I never could figure out how in my particular types of conversions someone can go overboard. When it comes to Christianity, how can you try too much to be more like God, who is only good? When it comes to making attempts at eating healthier, can you do that too much? Especially in America where our food supply is pathetic?! Still, people often feel they have to defend themselves, maybe because they aren't ready to make the same changes yet. I've been accused of “depriving” my poor kids of sweets or junk food. When this happens, I've learned to have thick skin and not let it bother me, because usually they're only joking around, or sometimes they just don't understand. I know that this is better for our family, not just in the present, but far into the future, and that's all that matters. The point is, anytime you make life changes or are different from others, you'll likely be persecuted for it (and sometimes it feels like high school).
- In both cases, I learned that nothing you say can urge others to make positive changes in their own lives until they're truly ready (or when it comes to Christianity, until the Holy Spirit moves in them…) This is a tough one, because like anyone else I love my family and friends and just want their bodies and souls to be healthy! I have to remind myself (often!) that nobody likes a know-it-all or a bulldozer, so I pray I'll know when the timing is right and when to speak up. Until then it's really not my business what choices others make. I'm slowly learning to respect that and keep my mouth shut more.
- The time frame for life changes is different for everyone. No matter what sort of conversion, for some people it takes place over a very long period of time, as in years, and for others it's fast. No matter how it happens is “okay”, as long as you're growing over time and becoming more of the person you want to be, or even more important, the person God wants you to be.
- Lastly, both times I learned that God really can do the impossible in us! Even though I grew up going to church now and then, there was a lot I didn't understand about Christianity, and in my mind Jesus freaks were just plain nuts. To get past those barriers and many others, and decide to open up to Him in my own Christian conversion, was miraculous. (If you are like I was and just “don't get it”, check out other blog for help.) As far as my food conversion, this is how I know He did the impossible: when I can go to the grocery store and bypass my beloved Cocoa Puffs or Pop Tarts because of all the junk on their ingredient labels, you KNOW something miraculous has happened!
Tell me about YOUR big life changes?
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