What do you do with change? I read two books back to back recently. Both discussed our reactions to change. I suppose it means God must have thought we needed to revisit where I stand on this heart issue.
The first book, Girl Meets Change: Truths to Carry You Through Life's Transitions by Kristen Strong. Let’s get a glimpse of where she spent her childhood years.
I am a country girl who spent my childhood surrounded by endless blue skies and wide open Oklahoma prairies.
I never had to learn to make friends; they were simply always there.
She had me.
She baby-stepped her way out of this childhood comfort zone, going off to a nearby university for example, until the day she married a military man. For years, they moved all over the country and she had to, well, get used to it. God taught her though, in all that moving, how to accept change. Using examples from her own life, as well as the lives of others, she shows her readers all she’s learned. How to grieve over an unwanted change. The best way to embrace change when it’s scary. Most of all, where to find God in the midst of all the change.
I look back at the road and am reminded that when we are confronted with difficult change, time doesn’t heal all wounds - time with the healer does.
Kristen sees change differently now, in a much healthier way. She realizes God is always in it. She gives herself the time and space to express her feelings honestly. That’s what I liked about this book. She never claimed to have it all together. Often times, she resisted the change before her but she allowed God to grow her in this area. It’s drawn her closer to Him. Even though not a day goes by she doesn’t miss home.
She had me there too.
The other book, Roots And Sky: A Journey Home in Four Seasons, looked at change from the opposite direction. For years, author Christie Purifoy lived in places that didn’t feel like home. Her heart never completely settled there. In this book, she writes about her first year “home.” She and her family settle into a historic home on some land in rural Pennsylvania.
She had me there.
I was right to believe that I had come home. I was right to imagine that my dream was being realized in this undreamed of place. But I was wrong to think that such a meaningful arrival could ever be accomplished in a moment.
That’s what Christie has to teach us. Even when we long for change and it is given, there’s still much work to do.
The readers observe how Christie does the work in a year’s time. Intermingled with the various church and calendar seasons. Also real life in that she has a baby, they don’t know a soul and she has no idea how to live a life in harmony with the land.
I enjoyed the style of this book. It was organized in seasons, written month by month, further broken down by moments. You can read it in snippets or in larger segments of time.
In Autumn... Shutting the front door with a tug, I pull my wrap just a little tighter around my shoulders... Each step is one step away from my past. Each step is one step closer to something new.
In Winter... This snow-covered yard is like a blank page inviting us to make plans for the garden and urging us on toward the next season’s work of clearing and trimming and planting.
In Spring... I want to say, but then I do not say: it is perfect. I talk myself down from that word every time. Because tomorrow it will be cloudy, or later this week it might freeze... But I confuse perfection with permanence. Whoever told me that perfect is only perfect if it lasts?
In Summer... I am a home-loving homebody, but even for me staying put is not easy. I read travel guides and travel memoirs, and I love the travel section of the Sunday paper.
Your life right now might have too much change in it for your taste. Or maybe the change you’ve longed for is finally coming to fruition. Sometimes it’s a bit of both. I’ve certainly encountered all of the above. Moments like this, though, are what we live for:
In the wilderness we lost some things and surrendered others. Now we have received. We have come home.
I received a copy of Girl Meets Change, written by Kristen Strong, and Roots And Sky, written by Christie Purifoy, from netgalley.com for the purpose of generating a review. Italicized quotes are from the books (Girl Meets Change at top; Roots And Sky at bottom). The opinions expressed here are my own.
Now, the good part! Let's give away a copy of "Roots and Sky." I know you'll love it.