It felt like I went from being stuck to moving at top speed in a matter of seconds. Everything we’ve been sharing about transitions got left at the gate. I went from being anxious about sitting still and waiting to being anxious about crazy schedules and a myriad of tasks to accomplish. Our last few months were like:
Ready, Set, ……………….. OH NO!
Completing the transition and moving into a season of active serving has brought several learning opportunities. The only way I know how to share is with a few quips and highlights:
Learn to manage energy – time management often rolls off my tongue and fills my napkin diagrams. Rather than prioritizing schedules, we should be giving our best time to those who need it. When are you most productive? Use that time to get projects done. When are you the most receptive and responsive? Use that time to give people time and care. When are you the most tired? Use that time to recharge and rejuvenate; avoid difficult discussions and major decisions in those times.
Prioritize your values – Give time to the things you want to become. If you want to be known as a person of the Bible; take time to study. If you say you value family; give them time. If you say you love people; don’t waste your time on things.
Know your capacity – my capacity has changed through the seasons of life. There was less ministry time when my daughters lived at home and I was working full-time. My availability changes when I travel. Some projects need more time. Some people get more time than others. I can only do so much at any given time. That’s my capacity; what’s yours?
Know your purpose – Working under the strain of performing differently than how you’re designed lessens your effectiveness and drains your energy. You might be able to serve for a little bit, but you will wear out faster. You may have several people tell you who you are, or what you are not, but you and your Creator are the only ones who get to make the final decision. I have had seasons where everyone around me was convinced I should be doing something different than I thought. I see now those were times God was guiding me into a different role, location, or direction. God has the ultimate purpose for His creation; trust His guiding.
Take action at the right time – Have you ever seen a runner stumble at the starting gate? For whatever reason, they were not ready to go when the race started. I feel like I stumbled in this time of starting. I was more concerned for the baggage I’ve collected over the years than the race that should hold my focus. I wasn’t looking forward at the time the race started. The writer of Hebrews encourages us to lay aside every weight, and sin, which clings to us, and let us run, with endurance, the race that is set before us
Ask for help – This is more than asking for help to complete the tasks at hand. This is surrounding yourself with good teams, personally, spiritually, and projects. One of our supporters encouraged us to get a prayer team around us as we move into this new season. I’ve been accountable to them for activity, goals, and personal health. If I am not feeling, or thinking well, they know how to pray, support, and encourage. If I am straying from my original purpose, they advise me back into effectiveness. They have warned me of impending danger. They have laughed with me when I was taking myself too seriously.
Spring has sprung! At least in this season of my life. the winter has closed with its seemingly endless bareness. I feel like anything extra has been stripped away. Deserts and winters seem to filter down everything that is unnecessary. The character developed during that stillness will sustain through activity.
Thanks for letting me share. I’d love to hear your story of transition, what went well?, where did you find resolve to wait in the quiet time?, what was the hardest/easiest thing about your ending, pausing, and starting? What would you say are the lessons you learned?