Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Gift of Transition

Today, I'm unwrapping the gift of TRANSITION.  Not exactly the gift I would ask for, but it's what God has given me time and time again in life.  And, I have a feeling it will just keep coming...
This weekend, as Jeff and I checked into the crowded hotel lobby at the Young Life conference surrounded by shrieking groups of reunited friends, I felt... OLD.  Most volunteer leaders are college students, and most committee members are parents' of teenagers so, tired from our work week but still excited to sleep in a king-sized bed in a nice hotel, we were obviously very inbetween.

It wasn't very long ago at all that I was one of those giddy college students who couldn't wait to graduate, get married, make some money, and "have it all together."  And now, here I was fighting off the urge to go yell at the "noisemakers" in the hall for keeping me awake at 2:30AM, and frantically searching the hotel the next morning for somewhere to trade in the juice that came with our breakfast for some good strong coffee.  I kept saying to Jeff, "We are so old and lame now."

But, thankfully, God is good.  On Saturday afternoon, during a break-out session titled: "Finding Peace in Transitions,"  I was challenged to think about where God is in those "inbetween" moments of growing up.  My natural tendency, like so many others', is to think that when one area of my life changes, everything else has to too.  For example, I can't tell you how often Jeff and I talk about all the things we won't be able to do anymore once we decide to have kids.  The session, however, reminded me that even though the seasons of life will always change, God's call to ministry does not.  While our ministry will LOOK different as we "grow up", it doesn't have to stop... In fact, I can have hope that it will only get better as I grow in wisdom, experience, and confidence in who God made me.  As hard as it is sometimes, this transition IS a GIFT.
I don't want to look back on my life 40 years from now and think "my ministry was the best when I was in my twenties."  Instead, I want my life and my marriage to always be about giving my life away -- in whatever way God leads me. That's the legacy I hope to leave for my kids one day.

On the way home Sunday, Jeff and I talked a lot about what our lives will look like through some of the next transitions.  Of course we don't know what in the world God will do with us, but we both got excited thinking about the way he has already been faithful with our gifts and passions. 

So for now, I will choose to be happy in this stage.  The one where it's ok to have a stained carpet because too many people have spilled coffee/tea/wine/etc. over good conversation.  The one where we can stay up until midnight on a "school night" playing board games with friends, or eat frozen pizzas two nights in a row.  The one where friendships mean more than just seeing each other every day, and where I actually have two hours to think about all these things...

8 comments:

  1. I think you got it down right. I enjoyed these thoughts and I will say that some of those noisemakers were probably friends of mine so my apologies :)

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  2. awesome thoughts E. Thanks for sharing. I can def relate in many ways. The photo at the end made me shed a tear - I won't lie. Made me miss y'all-but realize how lucky I am to have each of you!

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  3. aw....wow, thats good E. I think you are not alone in this awkward time. Im glad that you are learning something through it. You and Jeff are going to have some very very adorable kids too!

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  4. good post. I'm an in-between-er, too, and your post is a great reminder of how I need to be thinking.

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  5. so touching! the photo at the end was the sweetest!!!

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  6. Oh, I SO remember hitting that stage of feeling old amongst the college leaders. I graduated college the same year I had Jackson- CRAZY transition. There is a lot of truth in this post and it resonated with me! =)

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