I have asked a few of my friends who have recently gone through change and transition to share with you part of their story of growth. I am inspired by these women, their stories, and how they are trusting The Lord in the Midst of it, and I am confident you will be too.
My husband loves Cleveland and his Cleveland peoples. His city has become a city i love too and also his peoples. Meeting his peoples is how i came to know and love Courtenay – our guest post writer today! One of the highlights of my trips to Cleveland was getting to grab coffee with her. We would catch up on the highs and lows of life and what God had been teaching us. The last time i got coffee with this bright young lady was a couple days before her wedding. We sipped on our coffee at a local Starbucks and chatted about how she met Kingsley, the wedding, and the big move right after to Kansas City. Wow – thats a lot of big change happening within a few weeks followed by transitions. Thats why when I started this series on change and transition I knew I wanted her to share her story.
Getting married is a big change. Moving to a new city is a big change. Getting married and moving to a new city at the same time is a really big change. My husband and I have been married for four months (today, yay!). We first connected on Facebook. In 2012, his friend who was my pastor, along with his wife, thought Kingsley and I would make a great couple despite the fact that Kingsley lived in Kansas City and I lived in Cleveland. To make a long story a short one: one friend request, many hours of FaceTime and hundreds of dollars in plane tickets later; I now live in Kansas City and have a new last name.
Change occurs in an instant. With two words, a man and a woman change from unmarried to married. But to transition from two single people to one couple takes time and submission. (Bear with me, I’m not going where you might think I’m going). I prepared for the changes for over a year. Kingsley and I talked about who would move, what we wanted our wedding to be like, and how he would begin to eat breakfast.
I packed up the things from my apartment; I gave away a lot of stuff and moved in with my parents three months before the wedding to save some money and consolidate. I spent those three months saying goodbye to people and places that I would no doubt only experience through the interwebs for quite a while once I moved. (Dating long distance does a number on your travel funds. Pun totally intended.) I was ready for the change. The transition, however, caught me a little off guard.
You see once I arrived in Kansas City, and got my spices where I wanted them and recreated the chaos in my new bathroom that existed in my old one; I looked around and asked, “Ok, now who am I?” I had no job and didn’t want to go back to serving unless it was absolutely necessary. I had no friends and my church was brand new to me. The person that I now lived with had known me for just over two years and so was hardly an anchor for what felt like a storm of an identity crisis coming on. Or so I thought.
The miracle of marriage is in that commitment word. And not even so much commitment to each other. These past four months my husband has demonstrated to me that while he may not always remember my tree nut allergy he is committed to his role in molding me to the image of Christ Jesus. It was hard at first to submit my emotions (that feeling of being lost) to the reality of the truth of the gospel in my life and in the midst of this transition. Shoot, its still hard. But Kings continues to remind me and encourage me in lots of tangible and subtle ways. The fact is that I am not lost. I am in a new place and a new situation for the purpose of God conforming me to the image of His Son (Romans 8:28-29). See, I told you I wasn’t going where you thought I was with that submission thing!
Transitions kind of suck. They do not feel nice. But without them I wonder if I would understand again the richness of God grace, the warmth of His mercy and grandeur of His master plan.