Transition is a Team Sport
In the transition from freedom at home in Judah to forced captivity in Babylon, Daniel stood out as a leader among his peers. However, he did not go through this adjustment on his own. His teammates were Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. In the first two chapters of Daniel, we see his team studying together in the School of Babylon. The pagan teachers recognized this Hebrew team for their superior aptitude (1:19). They took a dietary oath together and the team was healthier than any of their peers (1:15). When faced with their first life-and-death challenge in their new positions, they prayed together as a team and God answered their request (2:17–19). When the king rewarded Daniel for revealing the meaning of a dream, Daniel convinced the king to reward the other members of his team as well (2:49). No doubt, Daniel would list good teamwork as a priority for successful transition.
To state that teamwork is important to the military is like saying fuel is important to a car. From a two-person buddy team watching each other’s back to the Air Force providing close air support for the Army, the military knows it must function as a team to be successful.
What is in every fiber of military functionality is sometimes strangely missing in the life of some military spouses. Military spouse Shelley Kimball admitted, “As a military spouse, I was making everything so much harder by insisting to myself that I go it alone. I refused help. A lot. Even in desperate times. I thought it was a personal failing, a weakness, to be willing to accept help. I was so wrong. So very wrong.”
Transition can go much smoother if you tackle it with a team. Your home team of husband and possibly children will face many major life transitions together. Like Daniel and his team, you can best support each other if everyone signs on to the same shared values to guide your decisions. As Daniel made sure the king not only rewarded him, but also his team, every member of your family needs to know you consider their feelings and aspirations.
In addition to your home team, may I suggest you pull together a prayer team of people not bound by location and distance to back you up? Daniel already had his prayer team in place when a crisis arose. Any time is a good time to build a team to support each other in prayer, but having that team in place before you are in crisis mode is comforting.
Sister, don’t go it alone. Teamwork can make the hard work of transition easier!