God Will Transition You
In the book of Exodus, you see the deliverance of the Israelites out of slavery, out of Egypt. God used Moses to lead them out of slavery and away from Egypt.
The Israelites had been slaves in Egypt for 400 years. That was their life for 400 years; the hard bondage of slavery.
God performed many, mighty miracles through Moses, to convince Pharoah to let the Israelites go free. But his heart was hardened and he wouldn't set the Israelites free. In all, God sent ten plagues on Egypt.
There was one, final plague that God brought upon the Egyptians. He sent the angel of death and all of the first born of Egypt died. This included all of the first borns of everyone in Egypt. This included the first born of the cattle.
So Pharoah relented and allowed the Israelites to leave Egypt for the land God had promised Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
The journey to the new land as a free nation, was a journey that should have taken about 3 or 4 weeks. The journey ended up lasting 40 years. In addition the generation of Israelites that were delivered from Egypt, didn't see the promised land. The two exceptions were Caleb and Joshua. That generation's children saw it, with Caleb and Joshua.
So, why did it take Israel 40 years? The Israelites at different times rebelled against Moses and God. They also complained quite a bit. Often, while they were complaining, they yearned to go back to Egypt. Though they were in bondage, they kept speaking of the food and drink they had there, that they didn't have during their travels through the wilderness area.
God had sent them a deliverer in Moses, yet they yearned for Egypt.
God led them out of slavery, but they weren't handling the transition very well.
Transition is going to be a common thing that will happen to you as you discover, pursue and live out your God-given calling.
You may be in a transition now, or if not, you will be when you seek God for His direction in relation to your calling. The Israelites didn't handle their transition very well. It took them 40 years and they still didn't see their destiny.
How well you navigate that transition will be determined by three things:
- Your relationship with God and how surrendered you are to His direction. The generation that was led out of Egypt, never, truly surrendered to God in their journey. As a result, they died in the wilderness.
- Your mindset. In anything you do, in order to be successful, including transition, it's about 85-90% mindset. If your mindset allows you to be successful, this will help you in your transition.
- Whether you continue to look back to the past or not. The Israelites kept looking back and yearning for Egypt. So, they never made it out of the wilderness. Jesus said if one looks back, they aren't worthy of the Kingdom of God.
There are generally three parts or phases of any transition you'll go through.
- The first phase is the deliverance phase, if you will, or the letting go phase. As Moses saw with the Israelites, this is usually the most difficult phase. Often people will make the excuse they aren't prepared for what God has for them after the transition. Let me let you in on a secret. More than likely nothing or very little in your past has prepared you for it. The key here is to focus on God and realize His loves for you and that He has your best desire in His heart for you. Commit your transition to God. After all, He's leading you. Trust Him and He will help you (Psalm 37:5).
- The second phase I call the wilderness or the journey phase. During this phase, the Lord will be preparing and strengthening you for the calling and assignment He has for you. You may learn new skills. Psychological resets and setting new patterns will take place.
- The third phase is what I like to call the Canaan phase or the Jordan phase. This is the phase where your new beginning starts. You'll develop a new identity and discover or rediscover the new sense of purpose that allows the transition to work.
The toiughest part of a transition is the first phase. Just with the Israelites, one may have a very hard time of letting go of the old. As opposed to the Israelites, your ending phase may not have been a bad thing at all. You may have been in a great job, location or situation. It could be a tough place to leave, though God is leading you to your new beginning.
In future posts, I'll discuss how to navigate the different stages of transition. But for right now, just seek God regarding His destiny and purpose for you.