Most of us pine for a time when life will stabilize, when change will cease, when we will live happily ever after. We also know in our hearts that such times rarely come, and, if they do, they are usually brief. More often, life moves from stage to stage, through transition after transition. Some transitions end well and lead to the renewal of our spirits. Some transitions end badly, with a worse outcome than we expected.
William Bridges reminds us in his book, Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes, we must spend time in “the neutral zone” before we rush into a new beginning. The neutral zone is an uncomfortable place where we question ourselves, doubt our decisions and flounder. Because the neutral zone is often so uncomfortable, we try to skip over that phase and rush toward a new beginning before our soul has done its work. That is a mistake. We must live in the neutral zone, with its uncertainties, frustrations and doubts.
Put another way, as people of faith, we must wait upon the Lord.
This message is adapted from “Neutral Zone” written by Robert O. Wyatt in the June 2011 issue of Lutheran Woman Today (now Gather) magazine. Today we remember two scientists, Nicolaus Copernicus who died in 1543 and Leonhard Euler who died in 1783.