The Gift of the Middle

The summer before my junior year of college (yikes, 12 years ago!), I traveled with a group to Ecuador for a summer study abroad experience. We were mostly based in Quito but spent almost every weekend visiting the coast, the jungle and exploring other parts of this beautiful country.

On one of our adventures, our group crowded into a little suspended cable car to take a ride over a valley. Halfway across as we enjoyed the gorgeous views, that little car stopped.

I am NOT a fan of heights and really have a very small heart pocket that thrives on adventure. Stepping into that cable car and leaving the safety of the canyon edge was pretty risky, and getting stuck part way across was not exactly my idea of fun.

I’ve been thinking an awful lot about transition lately. In many ways I have left the safe and predictable edge of life as I’ve known it the last few years. Most of my ministry commitments and relationships have paused or ended, leaving me with a blank slate and a lot of unknowns. But I haven’t gotten to the other side of the transition where I can put roots down again and establish routines, finding the stability that steadies my heart. I’m right there in the chaotic middle, and it can feel pretty scary.

I’m learning that this messy middle of transition can also be a gift. Even though I knew how to handle the stability I was leaving, it was also becoming unhealthy and I know that this change has been really good. I have no idea what is coming and yet I have been granted a season of rest. I don’t yet have new responsibilities and demands on my time. I can seek God’s heart for this season and the one to come, letting His peace reign right there in the middle. In His perfect timing, He will lead me to the other side and establish His purposes for me there. In this, I can rest content, safe, held.

That cable car in Ecuador eventually began moving again, but while we hung suspended over the valley, my fellow classmates and I were able to laugh about the situation and enjoy the view. While I’m here in the middle of the transition process, I can strive to do the same.

Middle cable car

2 thoughts on “The Gift of the Middle

  1. Middle’s can be scary, waiting for direction can seem endless, but be assured that God will show you the way you should go — in his time. In the meantime, keep healing and doing what opens up for you as you wait. Don’t worry if you’re doing the right thing 😊, God’s got you in his hands!

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  2. Yes, transition can be scary. But I love quotes and this is one that comes to my mind – God is everywhere even at your wit’s end. Paul and I are approaching a transition too. Partly because – at one point in time we considered people in their 70’s as getting old, now when we do the math, it is even more obvious that we are getting old. Recently, Paul had a health problem that was very serious so we are having to face a transition from doing everything to finding someone who could do some of the work too. Not easy for a farmer, especially if they are ________________German men. But we know that God has a plan and all things will work out, but we also know that we want to know what that plan is NOW. We did get a couple of letters from Ginny recently. We pray that all things worked out on the 29th so that she could have knee surgery. My mother was 75 when she had both knees replaced and she used those knees for 18 more years. Our church circuit had an out-door mission festival this morning. It was held in a chapel in our neighborhood at 9:00 a.m. It was a beautiful morning with a slight breeze – cool temps – and an awesome sunrise over the trees. You and your whole family are welcome to come up sometime – we would love to take you there – the chapel has an interesting story. We pray that the Lord will direct you along the path that He has planned for you. In His love and care, Gynell

    On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 11:49 AM, A Heart Like His wrote:

    > shilkemann posted: “The summer before my junior year of college (yikes, 12 > years ago!), I traveled with a group to Ecuador for a summer study abroad > experience. We were mostly based in Quito but spent almost every weekend > visiting the coast, the jungle and exploring other pa” >

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