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Transitions - Predictable and Unpredictable



Predictable and Unpredictable

Life is a journey.

Along the way, there are predictable transitions.

These are due to the natural progression from one stage of life to another.

Understanding these transitions can help in various ways.

  • an individual and married couple can prepare for future transitions

  • pastor and church planter can know the general problems of the members

  • ministry opportunities arise at each transition

  • there is enough pain to motivate the person to consider something new

  • serving a person in transition can lead to long-term discipleship


Some of these predictable changes that could be perceived as a bridge include

  • graduating from high school and off to college or military or other

  • choosing a career field and college degree or branch of the military

  • applying to colleges and for financial aid

  • choosing a college

  • funding the degree

  • moving to campus or commuting

  • starting to take classes

  • habits related to taking classes, studying, tests, papers, projects, etc.

  • balancing school, sleep, family, employment, social, church, other

  • persevering through the ups and downs

  • (changing majors, minors or schools)

  • completing all the details needed for graduation

  • graduation as a celebration and passage

  • graduation to finding the first career job

  • starting first career job to advancing in that company

  • not dating to dating

  • dating

  • dating to engagement

  • engagement to wedding

  • newlywed

  • first child

  • first child to other children

  • parenting changes as each child grows

  • renting to buying the first home

  • homeownership basics to advanced

  • buying a larger home

  • funding children’s college education

  • funding own retirement

  • dealing with health challenges for each family member

  • learning to balance career, family, fitness, friends, church, recreation, etc.

  • mid-life shifting main focus from achieving success to significance

  • each child leaves your home until you have an empty nest

  • one of your children has a child and you become a grandparent

  • grandparenting changes as each child grows

  • dealing with your aging parents and those of your spouse

  • transitioning into retirement

  • developing a retirement lifestyle

  • dealing with the health challenges and immobility matters

  • grieving the loss of family members and friends

  • leaving all worldly affairs in good order for others


Then there are other transitions that come without much warning.

Some examples include

  • major illness

  • major injury

  • laid off

  • divorced

  • a child went astray

  • natural disaster (hurricane, flood, fire, tornado, earthquake, other)

  • addiction to alcohol, drugs, overeating, pornography, etc.

   by self and/or family member

  • imprisonment of self and/or family member

  • the untimely death of a family member

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