March 2, 2022

Time, Change, and Constancy

I'm thankful, God, that you are constant.

Marvene Thorpe-Baptiste

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Time has wings. Time is a bird, and we are the small riders on its back, holding on to it with fists full of feathers that are our days and years.”1

It was King Solomon who penned the thought that “there is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens” (Eccl. 3:1, NIV).

Time: a precious commodity we cannot control: we cannot reclaim it, pause it, or hasten it. Yet in our youth we think we have all the time in the world. Sadly, as it goes by—days, months, years—we realize that it is not so.

I share an author’s expression: “If time possesses wings, then our spirit must soar in God’s perspective of time. For we are dust, but God is timeless. Our lives are short and frail; however, God does not weaken or fail with the passage of time.”2

Change: Maybe you remember when the song “Change” made its debut, March 7, 1985. The words today seem even more appropriate: “Some things are never gonna change”—such as our changing and frailty this side of heaven.

In the last few months of 2021 our family was privileged to have both sets of grandmothers/great-grandmothers visiting at the same time. I remember my husband commenting that so many fam- ilies did not have the blessed opportunity we had. Around the dinner table one Sabbath, we had a combined total of 180 years of life and experience just between the great-grandmothers. There we sat, a span of four generations, aged 91 years old to 9 months old, all talking, laughing, and sharing a meal—what an awesome and memorable experience, a picturesque view of change in real time.

We all had better embrace change, because that’s what life is all about. Our willingness and ability to adjust to and cope with life’s various changes is what really matters. Yes, in many aspects of our lives we can effect some change: buying a car or a house, replacing one political party with another, changing our course of studies, etc. However, nature’s worldwide changes—seasons, life span, daylight hours—are, just like time, out of our control, inevitably so. Therefore we soldier on, doing the best we can where we are, and with what we’ve been entrusted.

Constancy: Don’t you wish sometimes that you could just press a button and make time and change stand still? Ah, if only we could! What a blessing it is to know that there is Someone who defies time and change, who says to us, “I the Lord do not change” (Mal. 3:6, NIV).

I’m thankful, God, that You are constant, the one I can hold on to, the one who transcends time and space; who, from outside my realm, sphere, and time, is still my anchor. There is no one, nothing, before or after You, and no time when You are not.

You are constancy I can depend on forever!

1 Olga Valdivia, Through the Seasons With God (Nampa, Idaho: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 2019), p. 22.


Marvene Thorpe-Baptiste is editorial assessment coordinator for Adventist Review Ministries.