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A time for change


Jimmy Cochran Columnist

  “To everything there is a season, and a time for every matter or purpose under Heaven.” (Eccles-iastes 3:1)


  When God created everything, I think there was also another creation besides the physical things. He also created a time schedule for things to happen….flowers bloom in the spring and then die back in the winter. Life begins and life ends. Jobs come and jobs go. I guess you could say that God also created change. Personally, I’m not the best at change, but as the writer of Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for everything, coming and goings, beginning and endings. Change happens

  I am reading a new book written by Pope Francis where he makes a statement that I had never thought of, but describes exactly what I have been dealing with for a few weeks and months. He said to, “never lose hope, always be open-minded to being surprised by God and to live a life of joy.” The being surprised by God part is what caught my attention. I’ve always been prone to trying to tell God what to do, then being quite impatient as I wait for Him to do what I suggested. Most always, I am greatly disappointed and annoyed when things don’t go my way. So, recently, I finally just gave up and uttered the eternally useful phrase of, “Whatever!”

  And God surprised me. Surprised me big. And out of this surprise, of course, change is required. However, I am embracing the change this time because it all just seems so right and good.

  I have been a church musician for 47 years either on piano, organ or electronic keyboards. I’ve served in local churches, been a part of various contemporary and gospel groups, played at the National Southern Gospel Quartet Convention in Nashville, TN, competed in piano competitions in younger years, recorded an album and played for various other musical events. This ended this past Sunday, April 27. Oh, I will still be playing the piano, just not weekly in a church. I’m still not fully aware of how God led me to this decision, but it will be exciting to see where it leads. There are some options in the works that may or may not come to pass, but for now, I am following the leading of God that this season of my church musicianship is ending. Seasons come and seasons go. I may end up back in a local church somewhere someday, but it is not time for that yet. The hardest thing for me is to let it go. In all honesty and humility, I am a good musician; a good pianist and I think about who can take my place and how selfish I may be in leaving like I am. But, I also know that God will provide someone to do so. The beginning of someone else’s season.

  Do you ever feel that you are being led in a path that seems totally out of your comfort zone? Have you ever felt that urging that maybe it’s time to do something different? Maybe it is time for a change? Maybe God can use your abilities better somewhere else? A time for a change of seasons in your life. God never calls us out of His service, but I believe He can change that place and method of service at times. And that’s where I am. And, for the first time in a very long time, I feel content with where I am and it is a good feeling. Maybe I should leave things up to God more often, huh?

  And for today my friends, this has been the gospel according to Jimmy.

  Jimmy Cochran is a resident of McDonough, author, musician and minister.



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