Over the last several months of my ministry life there is one word that covers every aspect: change. As I have navigated through this season I have been reminded of a lesson I have learned many times before.
Every change has ripples.
Think about a nice smooth lake or pond. It is calm, predictable, everything is working fine. But if a rock gets tossed into the water, not only does it make a splash (the initial change), it also creates waves and ripples that permeate from that spot and move further and further away in every direction.
It is pretty common knowledge that most people don’t like change. But I don’t think that is entirely true—most people can deal with a change, it is the ripples they don’t like and are scared of. And often times even good leaders don’t consider the ripples before making a decision.
Even an obvious change that is needed and good can still have ripples you haven’t thought of or didn’t see coming. A simple example: I change my diet and exercise routine to lose weight and be healthier, but it also effects my entire family. Time spent working out is time away from my family. Meals need to be planned and prepared differently. The cost of the gym membership changes our budget. The ripples start to really matter pretty quickly.
Whatever you are leading, whatever decision you are facing, whatever change you so desperately want to make, before you do anything—think about the ripples.