monthly lessons
Transition Lessons: Fall 2020

Transition Lessons: Fall 2020

There’s a book on my to-read list called Life is in the Transitions.  I figure the author might have some good advice as I seem to be always in transition.  Do you ever feel the same way?  Life is changing whether we like it or not.  It might be our choice.  We change jobs or move to a new location.  Or it might not be our choice.  For example, the pandemic has forced changes on everyone whether we like it or not.  Maybe you didn’t expect to be schooling your children at home or are trying to figure out how to do your job online. The transition might be a happy one such as a marriage or a sad one as adjusting to living without a loved one who has died. 

Since transitioning back to the states at the end of July, I feel like my learning has about maxed out.  Between adjusting to living in the states again, learning technology for online teaching, and living in a RV full-time, I am a constant state of learning.  Some days I think I’ve got this.  Other days, I feel behind the curve wondering if I can even score a passing grade. In spite of all the craziness, these last few months have been a blessing for us.  We have reconnected with friends, seen God’s provision in housing and jobs, and enjoyed the beauty of creation.  Along the way, I have learned a few lessons.  Some are observations.  Some are fun.  Some are just lessons.

1.  “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Joe Sabah

This summer I trained on how to use an online learning platform to tutor students online, but I was nervous about taking my first contract.  I wanted to get it right.  I didn’t want to mess it up.  The trouble was I wasn’t going to get it right without some  practice.  I needed to be willing to try it out and make a few mistakes.  

After tutoring 10 sessions, I am not perfect but so far I don’t think I’ve messed any students up.  I had to start. I had to ask questions in order to get better. I may not be great yet but I won’t get there by not starting. I am glad I started because I have really enjoyed my time with my students so far.  It feels great to be back in the math classroom again even if it is virtual.

2. Living in an RV reminds me of living overseas.

Living overseas we always had to be aware of our resources and their limitations. Living in an RV is similar. Before I use my blow dryer, I have to think about what other electronics are on so I don’t blow a fuse, When we are at a state park where sewer is not included, we try to limit our water use so we don’t have to hook up and go dump in the middle of our stay. When I go grocery shopping, I have to think through if what I am buying will fit in my pantry and small refrigerator.  Using propane for my stove/oven is normal for me.  Lighting the oven with a lighter is something I am used to doing. And thankfully so far, I haven’t broken anything with everything there is to remember.

Do I like living in an RV? I love it. I love our space and layout.  I love the simplicity in spite of the challenges.  But most of all, I love the adventures we are having.

3. To hold onto truth in this uncertain time

In the midst of election chaos and COVID fears, there is one thing I know to be true. God is still on the throne. God is with us whether we feel it or not. On Sunday, the guest speaker at the church we were visiting reminded us of that truth citing Isaiah chapter 6. Isaiah was living in turbulent times.  Uzziah, the king at the time, had just died. Life looked uncertain.  It was in this context that Isaiah saw “the Lord sitting on the throne lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple.” (Is. 6:1) 
In the days ahead may we not forget this truth.  May we not give in to fear over elections or viruses.  May we do our part by voting and taking precautions while still remembering that God is sovereign.  None of what is happening is a surprise to Him.  
“The kingdom of God is not in trouble and neither are you.” (Emily P. Freeman) 

You may think but you don’t understand what I am going through? You are right.  I don’t.  But I have gone through elections in third-world countries.  Elections that took months to decide.  Things did get tense.  The kids and I even came home one summer to wait for the results.  We need to be informed and live wisely, but not live in fear.  I must admit though that it is different when it is happening in your home country.

4. Just because I am in America, doesn’t mean that things are easier.

Okay, I knew this was true. Kind of. But both my husband and I underestimated the time it would take to set up our RV, take care of transition business, and get things in general done.  I also naively assumed that being in the US that doctor’s offices had the technology to communicate with each other.  So when it took me two weeks and a lot of phone calls to get some lab results, you could say I was slightly frustrated. 

5. Do your HW

I am in the process of trying to get a Bible study that I wrote self-published.  The process would have been so much easier if I would have formatted everything at the beginning the way they suggested. In my defense, when I started writing the study, it  was more for me, and I thought I would share it with a few friends and that would be it.  Instead I decided to take the next step.  It has been some work, but I have been the time.  I also thought the message was timely for this season we are in. It is called Rebuild and is a study of Ezra, Haggai, and Zechariah.  It is a study of how Jewish people who returned to Jerusalem after the Exiles rebuilt the temple.  I hope to have more details in the next few weeks.

6. Getting up early to go hiking is worth it.

In our travels this month, we visited Big Bend in south Texas.  It was a busy, hot holiday weekend. We decided to get up early each morning and get to our first hiking trail while it was still dark.  Even if we did have to start a few of our hikes using our head lamps, it was worth it.  We had the trails mostly to ourselves.  The animals especially the birds were out.  The weather was cool and the views that time of day were gorgeous. Here are a few of our favorite pictures.

What are some lessons you have learned this month?

1 thought on “Transition Lessons: Fall 2020

    • Author gravatar

      TJ, hi!

      I see so many graces and wise choices and gratitudes in your words today. God is indeed so good, so strong, so mighty … even and especially in the changepoints of our lives.

      Bless you …

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