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Restful Transitions

Restful Transitions
“Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you.”
Psalms 116:7

I don’t know about you, but I often find periods of transition anything but restful. My family and I are staring down a transition time right now: in just a couple of months, we’ll pack suitcases and return to the USA for a period of furlough, and while we are absolutely thrilled about seeing our family and dear friends, I can feel the transition stress creeping in. Decisions about our home here, our kids’ education, our schedule once we’re back in the States, combined with the emotional rollercoaster of saying temporary goodbyes to loved ones here and entering back into an American life that does-and-doesn’t feel familiar, tends to create some anxiety, not feelings of rest

The psalmist of Psalm 116 found himself in a much more complicated situation than my transition stress. We do not know the exact situation of this psalm, but he felt ensnared by death itself: he suffered distress and anguish and cried out to the Lord for help. We see the Lord delivering the psalmist from death and hear his response of praise to God and his declaration that God has been good to him, that God has dealt bountifully with him. 

In an ultimate, eternal sense, we too have been delivered from death through Jesus Christ: God lavishly bestows His love on us and grants us abundant life both now and for eternity. We can certainly say with the psalmist that God has dealt bountifully with us. 

But in “smaller” ways God deals bountifully with us as well, and remembering His goodness in our lives can bring us to a state of peaceful rest even in the midst of busy seasons. Remembering God’s faithfulness does not mean that I don’t need to clean out my house or pack suitcases or work out issues related to my kids’ education in the US, but it does mean that as I do those tasks, I can have peace. My soul can be at rest because I have seen the Lord provide time and time again, in a variety of ways and circumstances, and I know that He will continue in His bountiful provision.

Closing Prayer
Heavenly Father, thank you for your bountiful provision for me in Jesus Christ. Forgive me for doubting your goodness sometimes, and help me to cultivate the habit of regularly remembering all that you have done for me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Article: A Prayer about Trusting Jesus in Transitions by Scotty Smith This short prayer offers Biblically sound words to pray during times of uncertainty and transition.
Question for Reflection

If you are currently facing a time of transition, either big or small, do you feel added stress or added rest? How might you seek rest for your soul during this busy time?

Katy Brink
June 22, 2022

I admit that I feel added stress. There seem to be endless questions, details, and logistics to ponder! But when I feel myself getting overwhelmed, I try to think back to other times of transition and how the Lord has provided for us. He is faithful, and even if the circumstances change, He does not! I also try to be regular in my times reading His Word and letting it remind me of Who He is and what He has done in Christ.