Article Display
Email  |  My Account  |  Donate
How you leave one phase of life determines how successful you'll be in the next. The way you leave is the way you enter.

Robin and I were praying one night in February of 2001. We had accepted an invitation to teach a one-week class on youth ministry at RHEMA Germany, and we would be going there a few months later.

As we were praying, God spoke to both of us very clearly about preparing for more than a one-week trip. He told us that this was to be the next step for us in ministry...that we would be moving our family there and ministering to European teens and leaders.

Needless to say, we were quite taken by surprise! We had a great position in a great church in Texas (a great state!), working with people we loved and respected.

But when we were first married, we decided that whatever God asked us to do—no matter how strange or difficult—we would obey Him. After all...if He's Lord, I don't have much say in the matter. My job is to obey.

So there we were. We knew that a big transition was coming, but we didn't know when. We had been through a transition before (seven years earlier), so at least we sort of knew what to expect. And so we began to prepare....

All of us have to face transitions. And since every transition is different, it's never easy. Sometimes it's a transition of place, such as relocating from one town to another, or even moving to a new house.

Maybe it's something as common as going to a new school or starting a new job. Other times it's emotionally painful—even devastating—such as the death of a loved one or a divorce. Either way, transitions are a normal part of life.

We need to know how to handle them when they come in order to make a clean break from the place we're leaving, and so we can enter the next place with the right heart and attitude.

Here are some things I think we all need to remember about transitions.
  • First, I think it's important to keep your life connected. In other words, turn to God, not from Him. It's not His fault if things aren't going smoothly.

    Psalm 46:1 says God is a "very present help in trouble." You'll need His help to get through this unscathed. Walking toward Him counteracts burnout. Walking away from Him increases the feelings of loneliness and frustration.
  • Next, you need to remember to keep your heart right. Make sure your attitudes and actions are motivated by love. Philippians 2:5 tells us our attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus. Sometimes in our desire to be right we lash out at others. This hurts both the target of our aggression and us.

    You need to refuse to demonize either the people or the place you're leaving. We want to be right, so we make sure all involved know our side of the story. This puts us in a good light, often at the expense of the other person.

    The problem is that it hurts everyone involved if you make them out to be the bad guy. You can BOTH be right. Keeping your heart and attitudes right counteracts frustration.
  • The next point is related to the last need to keep your mouth shut. Never let a critical word leave your lips. Don't allow your words to cut off a possible future source of blessing. You don't want to have to reap when you sow like that!

    Remember: It's hard to be critical of someone that you're genuinely praying for. 1 Peter 3:8-12 says,
    Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing...."
    (1 Peter 3:8-12)
    Our tendency is to try to get people "on our side." We may not call it such, but in the final analysis we want to be vindicated.
  • Next you should keep your bridges intact. Keep relationships open as much as it is possible with you. It may not be possible to restore some relationships. Too much damage has been done and the other person may not be willing to restore the relationship.

    If that is the case, let them know that you love them and will be praying for them. Apologize for any hurt you may have caused...even if it makes you vulnerable to their attacks.

    Matthew 5:23-24 and Mark 11:25 make it abundantly clear that it is MY responsibility to keep relationships open. In these verses we are told to forgive anything we have against others and make the first step toward others that have something against us.
  • And finally, keep your mind and heart in the game. Give your very best until the day your transition is completed. Leave things better than they were when you came. Then you can go without any feelings of guilt.

    This is quite hard when you are sensing a disconnection in your heart...but it is necessary. Even through His suffering while dying on the cross, Jesus kept His mind and heart in the game enough to make room for one more sinner (see Luke 23:43).

    As I said before, transitions are never easy. There is always some sort of cost involved. Sometimes there are even "hidden fees" that we didn't expect.

    But regardless of our circumstances, we can intentionally choose our response. If you choose to do the above things, you'll see a rich payoff on the other side of the transition.

    Perrin Ministries
    All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Jon Perrin
Web site: Perrin Ministries
Jon and Robin Perrin met at Bible school. They have over 25 years of ministry experience. Besides their family, their greatest passion is empowering leaders and mobilizing churches to reach the unchurched.

About Us

The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

At cfaith, you can strengthen your faith and deepen your understanding of the Word of God by digging into the vast collection of teaching articles, streaming audio and video messages, and daily devotionals. No other website offers such a unique and extensive collection of spiritual-growth resources aimed at helping you grow in your knowledge of the Word.




Support Us

Why support cfaith?

(All contributions are 100% tax deductible)


For every Internet search you make using
goodsearch, cfaith will receive one penny!

GS Logo 250x38

Contact Us

Business Hours:

Monday—Friday: 9 a.m.—5 p.m. CST
Saturday & Sunday: Closed


(763) 488-7800 or (800) 748-8107

Mailing Address:
9201 75th Avenue North
Brooklyn Park, MN 55428


Login Form

Please ignore the “Secret Key” field; it is not needed to log in to cfaith.

Login Change Article

You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.