Two months ago, I moved to Austin, Texas, to join the team at IF:Gathering and to work full-time at building a dream to gather, equip and unleash women to live out their purpose. It’s been an honor to get to be a part of the work God is doing and it’s been humbling to leave a life of security, community, and comfort, for something so much more consequential than little old me.
Transitions are hard. But transitioning careers, locales, churches, and the community that you do life with day-in and day-out in one fell swoop, is not for the faint of heart. Here’s what I’m learning about life, myself, and God in the midst of it all:
1. Life isn’t supposed to be a cakewalk. Some days, maybe even a lot of days, are going to be hard. Especially for those of us actively pursuing God’s will. We need to draw near to God in both our joy and in our sorrow. When life is hard, He is still good; He is still present; He is still faithful.
2. A leap of faith is just one step in following God. I have a tendency to think that once I’ve jumped I can sit back and enjoy the free fall, but I am finding that God is continually nudging me from one uncomfortable ledge to another.
3. People don’t belong on pedestals. We love to put our leaders on pedestals and jeer when they stumble off. It is important to remember, they are human; they are imperfect; they are fallible. When we forget this truth, we set everyone up for disappointment.
4. All good things thrive with a good dose of intentionality. As Michael Hyatt warns us, “Beware of drift. Acknowledge where you are. Decide where you want to go. And start working toward your destination.” It’s been important to think about what kind of life I want to build in Austin, what mistakes have I made in other jobs and other settings, and how do I avoid making them again?
5. Diversity is worth fighting for. It’s really easy to get thrown into a group of friends who are from a similar background, in the same stage of life, etc. but some of my richest friendships are women who are different and who stretch me to see the world a little differently. I need to fight for friends who have families and for friends who will pull me out of my comfort zone.
6. You can’t wait on a spouse or a family to build healthy boundaries around your personal life. I’m 37, if I had waited for a spouse or a family to have “a life” outside of work, I would have surely burned out by now. It is important to prioritize the people in my life…and hopefully they’ll be there long after my work is done.
7. We need to keep hoping for reconciliation and redemption, even if it might seem foolish and naive. God doesn’t give up on people and neither should we.
8. Time and again, God writes the best stories with most unlikely of characters. God can use me, even when I’m a mess. As long as I’m willing.
What lessons are you learning right now?
Lindsey Nobles believes in women having a place to come together to reflect, rest, refuel and redeem their passions, their purposes, and their lives. She has worked in the trenches to bring IF:Gathering to life, and spends her days mobilizing others to bring hope to those in hard places. She has a sincere love for her precious dog Molly, Topo Chico, and Texadelphia mustard sauce. Learn more at lindseynobles.com or follow her @LindseyNobles .