My family and I recently moved to a new city. We sold our house, said goodbye to friends and family, and set up life in a new place. It was a huge decision, and one we felt God placing on our hearts (ask me about that another time, because it’s a really cool story).
We’re in the beginning of a new season. A new chapter. And it’s awesome. If not a bit lonely sometimes.
This week, I’ve struggled with loneliness. Not an overwhelming sense of it, just a bit of sadness that sometimes lingers throughout my day.
Yesterday, I went to the park with my girls and I noticed some other mamas having a playdate together. It reminded me of my park dates with my best friends back home. I felt a sudden tinge of sadness that my old familiar was gone, and I found myself fighting back tears.
I messaged a couple of friends to tell them how much I missed them. What happened next? My friend called me on the phone. Like, an actual phone call. I don’t normally talk on my phone much but it was so, so good to hear a familiar voice.
It got me thinking about seasons. And friendships. About the people who know us intimately. Who just “get” us. Who we can pick up a conversation with as though distance and time means nothing. Who understand our quirks and who we have shared jokes with, developed over seasons of time spent together. I don’t have to explain who I am, or how I got here, or prove anything. These people, they already know. They’re my people. They get me.
It takes time for this kind of friendship to develop, though. Living in a microwave generation, we so often want everything to happen right here and right now. In the same way you can’t rush the seasons, you can’t microwave intimacy. You can’t expect people to just get you and love you when they barely know you.
I never imagined I’d be the new kid in town in my thirties. And to be honest, it’s been fine. In fact, it’s been more than fine, it’s been amazing. My husband and I, we have been so overwhelmed by God’s faithfulness this year. We have seen His hand at work, orchestrating every part of this new season.
I’m learning a lot about myself. Some days I feel lost, not knowing what to expect in this new season, but overall I’ve realized that wherever I go and whatever crowd I find myself in, I’m okay. I don’t worry so much about what people will think of me and if I’ll fit in, because I know WHOSE I am. I know that as I follow God with my whole heart, everything else will fall into place.
So, that sense of loneliness? It’s only natural. It’s natural that the beginning of a new season will still carry remnants of the old. It’s natural to miss the things that are familiar and feel a nostalgia for the good times that have been. It’s natural to miss the faces and voices of those who have our hearts intertwined with theirs.
But it’s no longer the place I live. Just like the seasons in nature demonstrate, there is no stopping the arriving and departing of seasons. Just as the autumn leaves slowly give way to the barren branches of winter, and the bare branches then prepare themselves for the blossoms of spring, so too must we travel along with the seasons.
I love this song by United Pursuit, which sums up perfectly how our seasons change but God does not:
Though the music changes and the songs we sing
We still lift our praises to our loving God and King
Though the seasons change
Your love remains
Your love remains