Simply Transitioning

Do you remember learning how to write an essay?

The indent at the beginning, the certain number of sentences per paragraph, the introduction, the body, the conclusion. All that jazz.

For me, the hardest part was always figuring out how to transition from one paragraph to another- from one idea to another. It’s not that I didn’t necessarily know how to do it, it’s just that I didn’t want to. Transitions took up time and wasted energy. Precious time and precious energy. Why waste my limited time on writing a transitional sentence when I could be writing more about a great idea? Why take up the energy to come up with a great transitional sentence when I could be putting my creative energy into finishing up a stellar concept?

The thing is though, I think that transitional seasons of life are just as hard as transitions in essays. They take up time and waste energy. Precious time and precious energy. Why waste my limited time on a transitional season of life when I could be enjoying a more permanent season? Why put all of this effort into a transitional season when I could just save it for a longer lasting season?

Transitions are hard.

There is a lot of brokenness that surrounds transitions.

635a1ed0578654bfc2c47ccc85330f50

In an essay, the brokenness creates a divide from one idea to the next. There is a disconnect between paragraphs that interrupts the flow. The essay doesn’t mesh together in a way that is effortless and natural. Without a smooth transition, the essay doesn’t make sense.

In life, the brokenness creates a divide from one phase to the next. There is a disconnect between high school and adulthood, family life and retirement. Each phase of life doesn’t mesh together in a way that feels effortless and natural. Without a smooth transitional season, life doesn’t make sense.

I’m in a transitional season of my life. I’m going into my third year of college, so I’m not transitioning into being in college, I’m instead transitioning from kid life to adult life. And I find myself wondering, where do I fit in?

The last paragraph, in and of itself made so much sense. It read well. It was a beautifully written childhood that had a few climaxes, but ultimately resolved to a beautiful resolution at my graduation of high school.

The next paragraph is coming together pretty nicely, too. I can tell as I assemble the words and begin to arrange them into sentences that it’s going to be a stellar paragraph.

But what about now?

The last paragraph told a story about wonderful friendships, an incredible youth community in my diocese, fairly easy decisions and little to no responsibility. The last paragraph told a story about a strong girl who know who she was because of what she did and who she surrounded herself with.

But this transitional season- it’s full of brokenness, remember? Where are my wonderful friendships? Youth community? Ha- you’re not a youth anymore, you’re in college- we have nothing for you. Easy decisions? Here- why don’t you just decide what to do with the rest of your life. No responsibility? Here- pay your tuition and rent and get good grades and get a job and feed yourself well and exercise and volunteer and get an internship. You think you know who you are? Guess again.

Transitions are hard.

There is a lot of brokenness that surrounds transitions.

But there is a lot of beauty, too.

This transitional season of my life is exhausting. Day in and day out I am reminded that I don’t really have a place in life right now aside from being labeled as a “college kid,” or the international way of saying “transitioning to adulthood…we hope.”

But you know what, day in and day out I am also reminded that with every passing second I have the power to change the course of my life. I have the power to write this transitional sentence and change the meaning of not just the next paragraph, but every single one thereafter.

And therein lies the beauty.

7513022f2f5ba703379d0d55cf0cf56c

The last paragraph may have been an extraordinary compostion of years past that formed you into the person you are today. In that last paragraph, you may have been absolutely sure of who you are. You may have been surrounded by the most wonderful people and been a part of some incredible things.

But now in this transitional season of life everything that formed you has been removed. You don’t have the same friends. You don’t have a youth community. You have hard decisions to make and you have a lot of new responsibility. But that’s just it- that’s the beauty of this season.

You get to explore yourself. You get to figure out who you truly are and who you want to be without the influence of the kid from the last paragraph. You’re no longer confined to the last 8 sentences. You have a whole new page to write and you’re only just beginning. And it all starts with this transitional sentence. How you write this sentence, how you live out this transitional season shapes the next sentence- it sets the direction for the next phase of life.

8953aabc74fe88a2c133fff4b4906c0c

And in all of this wondering. In all of this lostness. In all of this chaos of trying to figure out who you’re going to be, turn to your Maker. I guarantee that if anyone knows who you are created to be, it’s your Maker.

Seek the Lord during this transition. Just as if you’re writing an essay and you can’t find the write word, consult the thesauras who is our God. You may try the wrong word once or twice. Or maybe time and time again. But keep consulting the Lord. Eventually you’ll find the word that fits- the path to take, the community to join, the decision to make.

Transitions are hard.

There is a lot of brokenness that surrounds transitions.

But there is a lot of beauty, too.

There is beauty in the possibilites that lie in the very essence of transitions.

Take advantage of those possibilities. Your course of action for the next phase of life has not been decided yet.

The next paragraph has yet to be written, so where will your transitional season take it?

198a3441ad55ef70c5bfa7371e95aadb

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s