Recently, we sold our farm, and in the process, we downsized our belongings and re-homed our livestock and animals. We learned to loosen our grip and let God bring about change in our hearts to prepare the way for our move.
I could see God working out all the details in His timing with regards to this big change. First, my husband, my daughter, and I were all on board with it. That in itself was a miracle with three, completely different personalities and viewpoints. But we trusted God would change our circumstances when it was His time. Then, He brought a Jesus-loving family to purchase our farm. We were able to easily pass our farm to them and didn’t glance back with any regret. During that time, God also led us to purchase land in a very difficult market, where we will build our next home. Real estate makes me believe that God is in charge of every detail of our lives, otherwise how would it ever work?!
It hasn’t been easy, but it has been beautiful. It’s been a lot of change this year, and even though others might think I’m kind of weird for this, I actually like change when God is leading. I think it’s exciting!
For now, we are living in the middle, calling a rental in a neighborhood home for the time being. In the midst of all this transition, I was more concerned about making sure our family was comfortable and could continue on with our regular daily life that I didn’t expect to be the one to have the hardest time with the move.
I tried to analyze what my hang-up was. I grew up in a neighborhood in the ‘burbs. I was used to a small backyard and close neighbors. I didn’t have my identity wrapped up in owning versus renting, or even where we lived. I wasn’t feeling impatient about building since I know what a chore it truly is. I couldn’t figure out why I was struggling.
Even when it’s God’s idea and I’m excited about what He’s doing, transitions are not easy.
I think about good but hard transitions in God’s word. There are many, but the one I can really relate to lately is when Jesus’ followers were waiting for the arrival of the Holy Spirit.
God had worked a miracle — the biggest of them all: Jesus took the sins of the world away and conquered death. His followers had seen the entire progress of events, walked and talked with Him as a resurrected Savior, waved goodbye in astonishment as God lifted Jesus back to heaven, and now His followers had to wait on what Jesus had promised.
They were in the middle of a transition. They were wrapping up one chapter of their story, God’s story, and beginning a new one. They didn’t know what to expect. It must’ve been uncomfortable and not what they had imagined. They must’ve been nervous about what would come next while trying to process everything that had happened.
So, they waited and prayed.
Their waiting was necessary. They knew they couldn’t do anything in their own power. And there was no shame in waiting on God and not knowing when, how, or where the next step would be revealed.
When the winds of heaven came, the Holy Spirit filled the followers and enabled them. They were given God’s power to live out the vision Jesus had cast for them and the way was made to achieve what God had desired through them.
God didn’t chastise them for not understanding or being nervous about what was to come. He knew they needed time to process what they had experienced.
It takes time for each of us to catch up with God’s plans as they unfold in our lives, so we need to give ourselves space and time to process what He’s doing.
And that’s what was happening to me with our move. I realized my emotions and heart were trying to catch up with what had already happened. And I was waiting for God to show up because I couldn’t and didn’t want to do anything in my own power in the the middle of our story.
I didn’t want to make our rental feel like a home without His Spirit. I didn’t know how to build a home in the middle of all the post-pandemic issues without His powerful leading. I couldn’t understand God’s timing or what He was really up to in our lives without living in the power that He had already given me in the Holy Spirit.
The waiting in our lives is necessary so we can rely on God’s power and not our own.
Sitting in the middle of a transition and not fully understanding what is happening within you is just fine. Allow yourself to catch up with what God is doing. And know that as a Jesus follower we each need and have the power of the Holy Spirit in us no matter the circumstances we find ourselves in.
This really hit home for me! I am 68. I became a widow 4 years ago after my husbands suicide- which was 4 years after moving from Maine to Florida- a move I did not want to make. In Nov. 2019 I moved to Colorado to be near my daughter. It has not been easy and after soul searching, praying and a little therapy, I made the decision to go back to Maine where my heart is. I think God really had a hand in guiding me to this. So I am now facing packing up, selling my place and all that goes with a move- on my own. It is scary. While I have many friends waiting for me in Maine and I have family and friends along the east coast, this is still daunting. And yet, I feel God’s presence. Since the decision, while I wake up adding to the “to do” list, I also have a sense of peace and clarity for the first time in years. I waited and God answered when the time was right. And that time is now.
Ada Orie says
Madeline, my condolences on the loss of your husband. I pray as God guides you back to Maine he will order and ordain your steps. Thank you for showing your courage and honesty during the journey of transition. May God bless you.
Thank you Ada. I feel like life is one big transition and this is just another one to deal with.
Ooh. I’m so sorry for your loss four years ago. Depression in someone you love can be gut wrenching at times because you so want to help but cannot.
However, I must say that I am astounded by the rest of your story! I am exactly 20 yrs younger, currently living in CO and am packing up my home (rented) to move to Maine myself (altho’ I’d be a newbie there). I, too, know it’s what God wants me and was also waiting for the right time (2 yrs of praying and pondering the decision) and I know it is also now. So so wild! I truly am awestruck by your comment. It is yet another confirmation (I suppose for both of us) we’re on the right track and hearing God correctly. Wow. Also, trying to find a rental there has proven to be a bit competitive. Any prayers for a place to call home there would be appreciated and I shall pray your move back home goes well. Wow….just wow! 🙂
I don’t usually share the details of my husband’s death but I have grown to trust and value the women on this website. I cannot begin my day without reading what is posted and the heart rendering responses. Arian, I think God is speaking to both of us. And I hope and pray our stories will be everything we hope.
Stephanie Bryant says
Madeline – I’m so sorry for your great loss. But I’m so proud of how you’ve clung to your faith and continued in God’s guidance for your life. You’re such a brave woman! I’m praying this transition is a beautiful one with many future blessings and healing in your future.
Beth Williams says
Oh sweet sister I am so sorry about your loss. Prayers for peace & comfort. Asking God to guide & provide strength & assistance for you each step of the way. May He show you exactly where He wants you. Kudos for waiting & listening to God’ still small voice. Can’t wait to see how this journey turns out.
Very well said and much appreciated.
Ada Orie says
Thank you for this wonderful post. I am in the middle of an ongoing transition which has left me isolated and alone at times. I am thankful for how God continues to be near to us during the most confusion and chaotic times of our lives. God doesn’t judge us and we should not judge one another. May we walk in mercy , grace and love toward each other. God bless you.
Stephanie Bryant says
Ada – I’m so thankful God is proving Himself trustworthy in your chaos and confusion. I’m praying for clarity and His beautiful timing in your life. So proud of your for drawing near to Him when you feel alone, because you’re not. Happy you’re here!
Thank you for this. Transitions are hard in part because waiting on the Lord is hard. A good reminder to me to let me soul catch up to what He is doing!!
Stephanie Bryant says
Doesn’t it take the pressure off to not have our mind, body, soul and spirit in perfect sync all the time with what God is doing?! He is not in a rush even if we are. It’s His good grace that allows us to have time to process with Him what He’s doing in the waiting and moving. Thankful you’re willing to wait for His best.
Pearl Allard says
This comment! As good as your post! Thank you for both. I’m grateful God is gracious in our transitions.
This was so perfect for me today. I’m in the middle of a very big transition in my life, and waiting is definately the hardest part. I am very encouraged! Thank you for sharing!
Janet Williams says
Thank you Stephanie. I really really needed this reminder today.
Brenda M. Russell says
Finding my way through transition and I am just now finding out that it’s more than labor transition to birth your child.
God knows how all of His children are wired mentally and emotionally. We need guidance when we make faith leaps. For example; a new job, a new relationship, a new realization about OCD and or ADHD. When I used to want things organized a certain way, I didn’t know that was just the way I processed things. But all people don’t process things like I do. My youngest daughter is wonderful at organizing her calendar, her work schedule, her self care routine and processing how she plans to embrace something or not. I didn’t grow up having choices to do something or not (if it was important, school related or Church related). I must admit I really have to pray for understanding and pause and wait for my daughter to explain to me what causes her to have stress and overwhelming feelings. I am certain that we are more alike than we both know. Maybe all three of my girls exhibit a lot of my personality. That is not easy to admit. I think I have been hiding a lot of my emotions just because I didn’t want to be persnickety or hard to get along with.
I feel like I am in Kindergarten when it comes to emotions and feelings. I am not accustomed to being asked how I feel when things occur. It’s talking through emotions and not getting stuck in an uncomfortable place, but moving forward with a new perspective.
Health and wellness is part of our Spiritual Being also. I don’t know why some people are not comfortable admitting that problems come with being human beings. To think that I did not have anyone to discuss these things with me until I turned 61 years old. Although I have had counseling during my 40’s & 50’s but I was never asked questions to help me see different outcomes to my inner thoughts.
I pray that if anyone is having to choose between housework, cooking, working outside the home and going to Bible Study and Church, you realize that’s a lot to have to do. We all need help to do what is necessary and how to prioritize those responsibilities. Ask for help and allow yourself to fail at getting it all done at one time.
I pray for strength, patience with myself and others, the ability to say “no” more often and to learn how to celebrate small accomplishments.
Thank you for listening.
Enjoy your evening.
Nancy Ruegg says
You’ve offered such wise advice here, Stephanie, for dealing with life-changing transitions. I especially appreciated your observation that we need to give ourselves grace and time to catch up to God’s plan. Just that insight alone would have helped during four of our twelve moves that were particularly challenging. God will no doubt use your words today to minister to many currently facing difficult transitions!
Beth Williams says
Change/transitions are never easy. They can be exciting to see what God has in store for you. I have been through many transitions since last September. It started when my co worker broke her arm. I volunteered to work full time till she got better. The only “bad” thing was that I didn’t care for my new boss. She was one who made lots of changes & micro managed people.
In the middle of November-still working full time they shut my unit down due to staffing issues. I was nervous about the next step. God sent me to ICU Covid unit. That scared me some. Not sure what to expect. While there I learned how to make IV Chains (IV med with 4 extensions to reach patient while pole is outside the room). One slow day I decided to make a few IV extensions. Management was so pleased they wrote a job out just for me. All I had to do was apply & I would get it. They also allowed me to choose days & hours (4 10 hr. shifts). Wow!! That lasted a few weeks then that unit shut down due to low patient count (yeah!)
I prayed God would put me in Med Surg Covid unit. He did. Didn’t like that unit as much. Less work to do & co workers not quite as friendly. That lasted till April this year. You guessed it that unit shut down- (Yeah again-no more Covid units). Each time I moved I had a different manager to report to. After that they moved me to 2800-medical ICU. We are being housed in another part of the hospital while the unit is being fixed up. Enjoy working here. I can almost always find something to do. The RNs enjoy working with me & vice versa.
Through all this I simply waited & prayed to God. I knew from past experiences that God would take care of me. My saying during all this is “you reap what you sow”. “God will reward your hard work.
This is so perfect. My husband and I, along with our son sold our home and land so I could go back to school to become a Nurse Practitioner. It’s always been a dream but I always felt it was out of reach for me. I was the one that had a change of heart. My husband wanted or talked about selling for a while and living in a 5th on my father in laws property. I said I would never be able to do that. I also said that about many other things, even school.
Well one day I was thinking I said to my husband let’s sell and live in a 5th wheel, get out of debt. Once I said yes, doors just kept opening for me to go back to school. I’ve been amazed at how it’s all worked out. This is something that has been all Gods doing. Not mine.
I have no idea when we will be able to buy/build again but I know that Gods timing is perfect and will pull through just like he has done every single time for us.