I’m a Londoner born and raised. South London, to be exact. I tried living in North London for a bit, but believe me, never again.
So if you’d asked me six months ago if I would consider living in another city in the UK, I would’ve said no. London always, end of. Even with increased living costs and the prospect of never owning a home, I’m a Londoner. When everyone else seems to be running away from urban life, I’ve always run towards it, open-armed and unashamed.
Yet at the beginning of the year that all changed. Now I’m considering – no, scrap that, I’m definitely – leaving London for pastures new. Manchester, to be exact.
In the midst of this process I have found myself inside my own head a lot, and feeling so overwhelmed. Then one day a lovely friend asked me the all-important question: “Where is God in all of this?”
Being a life coach has its perks. One of them is that I’m constantly trying to process what is going on in my life, and drawing lessons from it. And I’ve been doing a lot of thinking recently on change, transition and decisions.
So if like me, you’re currently facing a really big decision here’s a few things that have helped me particularly as I process this tricky time. And remember, it’s totally understandable that you’ll be feeling overwhelmed. Stay strong.
Make a decision
I love my comfort zone, it makes me feel safe and secure, which is a big part of my value set. So to make a massive decision like moving city goes against everything I’ve been used to. I read a wise quote on Facebook from a great vicar I know, he said: “Jesus loves you enough to disrupt your old life, in order to give you a new one.”
It’s funny, because I’ve been praying for change for years. Praying to do something different, to change the world. Praying to be used for God’s kingdom. Then I get an opportunity, and I don’t want to act on it. But when I brought my fears to God in prayer, He reminded me that he was for me (Romans 8:31). In order to get to a place of peace, I had to make a decision either way. The moment I said ‘yes’, I felt peace; I could start to think about the positive side of the move.
Be careful who you’re talking to
Being an external processor – a person who processes their thoughts out loud – I was sharing my thoughts with anyone who listens. Take it from me, this may not be a wise thing when you’re making big life-changing decisions. It makes no sense to process big decisions with people who have no real permission to speak into your life. The Bible is quite clear on the power we have with our words – they can literally bring you life or death (Proverbs 18:21).
So with a big decision, I’m trying to share deeply only with those who are good friends; people who are not afraid to share concerns, but who are also for me. Remember, good friends will speak from a place of love, because they want to make sure you are confident with your decision.
Whatever you decide, you be will OK
I have spent some time in Romans 8 and found that it has reminded me that God is with me in whatever I decide, as long He is invited along to show me the way. This is the key to being brave enough to take any risk. If we are more than conquerors and nothing can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39), what is really stopping us from taking that risk?
Have you, when facing a major decision, asked yourself “what’s the worst thing that can happen?” I did. When I did this, I realised that the worst case scenario was that I would move back to London a few months later, having had an adventure. And what about the possibilities for great things to come from this change? What good thing could come out of my move to Manchester? Adventures! In my view, it seems like it’s a win-win either way.
When it comes to making decisions, I’ve come to realise that there’s a process to handling change wisely. The most important part of this, I believe, is to know that we have a loving heavenly father. So why not seek His guidance and advice? He loves being invited to partner with us, to help shape His kingdom.
And if this is you right now, facing down a big decision or change, good luck. Let me know how you get on!