Seasons change. The things that are shifting right now are gentle. Ebbing. Flowing. Nothing drastic or devastating. Just little bits that are changing my routine, making me feel ever so little off balance. I am used to the big ones. The earth shattering -language, culture, address, name changes. And am surprised that I can even feel the air shift around these small changes.
I pulled up an old list, one I have used when I've left two countries, two lives. I created it so that I could leave well and whole... so I could be still to see and hear how God was moving in me. So I could see my need for Him and praise Him for His faithfulness.
My plan was to email this to a friend who is going through a big change in her life... and I am thinking that I might need to do a few things concerning my own changing of the seasons.
So... to you who are leaving something - a job, a ministry, a life-circumstance, a home, an education, a country, or someone loved... I invite you to join me in some of these things.
Journal about how you have changed over this time and through this experience.
Write a list of things you’ve learned how to do during this experience.
Have friends write in a “Memory”.
Make a photo album or scrapbook.
Make a list of the Blessings
Make a list of the people you have encountered. Perhaps include memories you’ve shared with them and lessons they have taught you.
Write a farewell letter to your team. This can be something you don’t hand out – so that you feel free to write about the good and bad.
Write a farewell letter to the people… just for you.
Write affirmation letters to members of your team/staff to be handed out.
Write farewell letter to your city.
Recruit people to pray for the transition time.
Make a list of expectations for the next season.
Clean Out/Arrange documents on your computer.
Host farewell dinners to say goodbye and pray with people. Be intentional about saying goodbye before the last week.
Make a loss/gain chart of leaving this country and going to the next place.
Visit families in the community, say Good Bye.
Make house notes for future resident.
Make a disk with notes for other teammates.
Have Good Bye/Thank You party for people like housekeepers, friends, and church members.
Talk to significant others about “re-entry shock” and what it might look like.
Give yourself room. And grace. And depend on the Strength of the Lord to complete what He is doing.