Monday, April 8, 2013

Three Obstacles of In-Between Places by Shana Schutte

Shana Schutte
Waiting seasons are familiar to writers, aren't they? We wait for different reasonscontest entries, submissions to agents and editors. Maybe we're waiting to hear back from a critique partner, sort of holding our breath to hear what she'll say. Then there are other waiting timesseasons of change or transition. Please welcome Shana Schutte back to Seriously Write today as she shares some strategies for getting you through those transitional moments. Enjoy! ~ Annette

Three Obstacles of In-Between Places
by Shana Schutte

Life is filled with beginnings, endings, and in-between places. Whether you are a teacher, doctor, or writer, you experience an in-between place at some time in life.

In-between places are when you have let go of the old, and you are deconstructing some aspect of your old life or calling, but you haven’t yet received the new thing God has for you.

In-between places are transitional in nature and they can be confusing. If you find yourself in an in-between place in your life or how you are serving God, here are three common obstacles.

1) Unbelief About God’s Work

Sometimes we think God isn't at work because He isn't working the way we want. When He doesn’t move in the areas we desire, we may believe the lie that He has forgotten us. Our expectations can blind us. In reality, He may just be trying to get us to shift our focus off the old to the new.

2) Regret

After God has removed the "old thing" in our lives, and we are in our in-between place, if we don't believe that God is at work, in despair, like the Israelites, we may want to go back to our own personal Egypt. In Isaiah 43:18, God says, "Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past." Oh, boy, can this be hard when we are in-between and longing for comfort! It's at these moments, that we have to make a conscious effort to believe God.

3) Striving

Remember that when you are in an in-between place, it's not your job to figure out how God will get you to your new thing; it's your job to trust Him.

Proverbs 3:5-6 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and He will direct your paths."

There is nothing like the discomfort of an in-between place to cause me to want to figure it all out so the discomfort of my transition with vanish. For analytical types, controllers, or those of us who always like to have our ducks lined up, being in an in-between place can feel like torture!

According to Proverbs 3:5-6, God doesn't expect you to figure out how to get to your new thing; He just wants you to trust Him. I had someone once tell me, "It's not your job to get yourself to your destiny; it's God's." I believe this is a great word for in-between places.

When you are in an in-between place, believe God is at work, look ahead to the future even if you wonder if you should be in your in-between place, and trust that He will get you to your new thing.

~~~~~

Betrayed by God?
Shana Schutte is an author and popular speaker. A former editor for Focus on the Family, she has been published by Today’s Christian Woman; Focus on the Family’s flagship magazine, FamilyLife; Mission of Mercy; Clubhouse Jr., At the Center; and Focus on the Family’s website; family.org, and others. Shana is the founder of Beyond Imagination, an organization dedicated to helping people find answers for everyday problems through biblical truths. Her nationwide radio program airs daily on over 400 Christian stations. She also leads seminars across the country. Shana's new book, Betrayed by God? Making Sense of Your Expectations, was written from Shana's personal experience and her many journal entries.

2 comments:

  1. Don't you just hate the "in-betweens?" I know I do and it seems like half my life is spent there.

    Thanks so much for the encouragement and the advice to take another look at them. Needed that this morning!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is so beautiful said (written) and so needful. Waiting is so hard for one like me who was born without the patience gene. And when it results in disappointment, after disappointment, trust is really difficult. Thanks for the wonderful reminder and encouragement.

    ReplyDelete

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