Over the years, I’ve had folks come to me seeking counsel about some person in their life. Sometimes it’s a spouse, friend or co-worker. Oftentimes a conflict is involved. One of the most effective counseling strategies I have at that point is simply to listen. And most of the time that’s all that’s required. But if the person seeking help is looking for a more concrete solution, I usually find myself telling them the same thing: “We can’t change your _____ (mother-in-law, boss, etc.), but we CAN work on YOU!”
Sometimes when a person hears that, they aren’t interested in going any further. But occasionally, they’re ready to stretch themselves and grow in ways they never expected. As a pastor, there is nothing more exciting or satisfying than seeing people grow and change more and more into the people God created them to be.
As we continue our Lenten journey, remember there isn’t much you can do about the person sitting in the pew next to you – or even sleeping in the bed beside you. But you CAN work on YOU! And when you’re ready for that, know that both God and your pastors are standing by and eager to help!