Transition is a loaded word. For some, hearing the word transition brings feelings of excitement and a sense of thrill. For others, it only brews fear, anxiety, and sends their inner need for control into hyper drive. The truth about transitioning is that it requires change, which is where our internal alarm starts to sound off. When things change, we're immediately forced to move out of our comfort zone and face numerous new possibilities that we’ve either been waiting on our entire life, or have been avoiding for ages.
For me, transition into marriage came as a double-edged sword. There was excitement and butterflies leading up to my wedding day, knowing full well that my life would change forever. However, as the first few months went by, I realized that there is no way for anyone to successfully handle a literal overnight life change.
If I could describe this first year as a married woman, I would say that it’s been the equivalent to a culture shock. This is because, I faced multiple, 180-degree changes in almost all aspects of my personal life over the course of one day. Before I got married, I had just finished seminary school while living in my parent’s home and being taken care of financially by them (which they were happy to do).
Before marriage, I had never truly had any bills in my name, never truly lived on my own, was only responsible for myself, and was a virgin. After my wedding, I officially became a step-mother, became sexually active, got a new full-time job, had bills in my name, was living with a man, and was away from my parents for the first time. Hello, and insert your first year of marriage!
Don’t get me wrong, this has been the most exciting and joyous time for me. It has been a blast to do life with my husband and stepson, while walking into this new territory and learning about myself as I hold the title of wife. But this season has forced me to deal with any and every identity issue I’ve ever had. I became exhausted, and felt as if I was dropped into the deep end of the pool with limited swimming abilities.
It’s been similar to the riding of a new roller coaster. Most of the excitement stems from knowing there will be ups, downs, and jolts but only assumptions of when each turn will come. It’s all new, and even though you know to expect the bumps, you don’t know when or how you will react, feel, or handle it when it comes.
"EVERY GOOD AND PERFECT GIFT IS FROM ABOVE, COMING DOWN FROM THE FATHER OF THE HEAVENLY LIGHTS, WHO DOES NOT CHANGE LIKE SHIFTING SHADOWS." (JAMES 1:17)
He does not change like shifting shadows. How encouraging is it to know that we have a God who will remain the same, no matter how much our lives do! My husband is a gift and this life with him is one that I prayed earnestly for. But I’ve had to learn that my husband will change, and could fail me at times. And that is okay. Because the Lord is my refuge and never changes.
When we embark on a new life in marriage, become older, lose relationships, or our health fades, we can rely on the Lord to be the only constant thing we have to survive those days. Even when we are in constant change, being swept away by the tide of life’s seasons, He is consistent and never-changing. During this first year of marriage, my saving grace has been knowing that I have an anchor in the Lord.
Knowing that as I walk in a completely new context, with new responsibilities and am forced to grow and re-learn -- He will always be patient, He will always lead me, He will always be wise, and He will always be faithful.