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In Between Times


Issue 342

There is phenomenon in life and work which I am proposing to explore with you for a few weeks. As we explore, I will also be inviting you to comment and respond. Firstly, by email; then by interacting with our social network pages. We are currently developing those and will introduce them to you during this series. So we are in between WORKTALKweekly emailing and setting up discussions. Our social networking is under construction and in development. This is the theme of this series. I want to invite you to look at the ‘in between’ times. Have you noticed how common they are? You can be in between idea and fulfilment, proposal and acceptance, or vision and delivery. You can be in between one system and another, one team and another or one place and another.

In work, you can also be in between one project and another or, on a more radical scale, between jobs or unemployed. You may just be between one mode of thinking, whereby you are reviewing your beliefs or premises, and on your way to new conclusions.

The biblical narrative is full of ‘in between’ times and we will look at them in this series, but before we go into detail, here are a few generic characteristics for you to ponder : Firstly, when you are at an ‘in between’ time you very rarely know when the outcome will arrive and sometime you don’t know what it will look like. Slaves, exiles and wanderers don’t know when freedom, return and promised lands will be reached or what shape they will take. Secondly, ‘in between’ times are full of questions. If you have more questions than answers in your soul you may be at such a time.

Thirdly, ‘in between’ times are often characterised by polar opposites. So if I am hoped to despair, love to fear, ambition to discouragement, vision to confusion, then you well may be in such a time. Forthly, the end point is often a birth point. ‘In between’ times can be seen as run-ups to a birth – a pregnancy or gestation period during which something new will emerge. In this sense, the end of the ‘in between’ time is also the beginning of something new.

Fifthly, such times can vary in length. When we look at our examples, they will range from a few days to a few hundred years. Whatever the length, if you look carefully, the learning will tumble out.

Lastly, as you can now possibly guess, ‘in between’ times can be seen as ever present. In fact as Christians living today we inhabit an era between the ‘already’ and the ‘not yet’ – but nevertheless I will invite you to visit particular, specific ‘in between’ times and grab a few fruitful lessons from the trees that grow in their borders.

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Series: In Between Times
Module: 7
Season: -
Daily Guide: No

Tags: beginning, in-between, opposites, paradox, timing, uncertainty

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Work well
Geoff Shattock

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