How to Handle Change and New Beginnings

There are two different kinds of “flying people.” There are those who smile with glee and sit on their hands to prevent from clapping over the adventure of it all, and then there are those whose knuckles turn white while gripping the awkwardly small armrests.

I am very much a member of the first group.

I’ve heard people talk about how they’re terrified of take off or how they get nervous when the landing gear comes down. I’ve heard the steady breathing in and out and in again. I’ve seen the wide eyes and the look of panic when the nose of the plane first reaches toward the sky.

But I’m not one of those people.

There’s something magical, something so This Shouldn’t Be Possible about being up in the air, suspended between heaven and earth, going in and through the clouds. And here’s what I’ve found to be true of both people groups: we all love the in between. After the seat belt sign turns off and, if the weather permits, we can look out all the finger-smudged windows and simply sit in awe of the view.

Tiny little cars with practically minuscule people driving them. We go further up and it’s just us and the puffy, cotton candy clouds. There’s a reason the windows are always smudged with finger prints. We’re awestruck with the in-between of the adventure.

But the take off? The beginning that holds so many uncertainties? The moment of both panic and trust as you buckle up and allow a stranger to take you up into the clouds, relying on his or her ability to help you safely come back down? A lot of us aren’t a big fan of the start.

And then the landing… sometimes smooth and gliding over the pavement, sometimes rough and bumpy and everyone’s thinking it – “please just get me out of here and onto solid ground again.” We’re pushed back against the seat from the sheer force of taking off or slowing down to a full stop.

It’s not too different from how many of us live our lives, really. We like the adventure and the in-between but change and beginnings are intimidating, scary, and new. Even when we can anticipate what’s coming there are still things up in the air {no pun intended}.

I know it because I’ve lived it. I’m living it now, actually. May 16th, 2015 was the day I closed the page on my college career, walked across a stage, turned back in my cap and gown and entered into “the real world” as a Virtual Assistant. It’s a new beginning and although I know some of what’s coming, there are things I can’t fully anticipate and then other things that take me completely be surprise.

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Others have gone before. Others have done this. Others have been just fine. And so yes, I will be (you will be), too. But this is my adventure, my journey, and the nose of the plane is reaching toward the sky.

Certainly, I’m in no position to offer great wisdom on how to seamlessly transition into adulthood. But as the plane is tipping upward and the adventure begins – whatever your adventure or change may be – here is what I’m finding to be true:

1. Situations may change but He remains the same.

God is still God and He is still good no matter my circumstances. God will remain the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. I may not know what tomorrow will hold, but I know the One who holds it. And so yes, we can be okay. We will be okay.

2. Lean into the change.

During both take off and landing, there is a force so great that you almost can’t help yourself from falling against the back of the seat. You could try to remain upright or you could lean back and let the plane take you where it will. Both are just fine and you’ll get to where you’re going either way.

But what if next time you choose to lean into it?

I tried it once and you know what happened? I felt like I was flying. And I know, I know. I was flying. But I went from casually sitting in an aircraft to feeling like I was actively participating in the journey. Lean into the change.

3. Trust the Pilot.

He can see what’s ahead, He has all the coordinates necessary to help you reach your destination, and He knows what He’s doing. We would never climb into the cockpit of a plane and take over the controls, forcefully pushing the pilot over and declaring that we’re fully capable. Yet we do this with the God of the universe.

We’d rather not think about it, but here’s the thing friends: if we’re flying over a vast ocean and that plane goes down – if things don’t go according to our plans – don’t you know that our Pilot can walk on the water?

We’re so secure, so held in His hand, so loved and protected no matter the sudden drop in our stomachs at take off or the bumpy landing. We’re going to enjoy the in-between and the view is going to be absolutely insane. But let’s choose to lean into the change together, trusting that our Pilot will get us where we’re going.

{A free gift for you: click here to download an 8×10 print of the Oceans lyrics pictured above. There are three color options available.}

 

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4 thoughts on “How to Handle Change and New Beginnings”

  1. Pingback: How to Handle Change and New Beginnings

  2. I think a lot of the fear we have about the unknown is that we are locked onto our “preferred outcome” with a death grip, and when things don’t turn out as we hoped they would, then we become disillusioned with God and get angry or withdrawn. The problem is that God often has other plans for us from the beginning and that’s where trust has to come in. we have to have faith that His way is best no matter what and that we can make our goal in any situation that we draw near to Him… and that, we can know for sure, He will always come through on. Thanks!

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