Change And Transitions, The Holiday Season
By Lynda Rozell
(Washington, D.C.) - Find the calm in the storms of life with this heartwarming devotional and business travel best seller, Journeys with a Tin Can Pilgrim written by author Lynda Rozell, also known as the Tin Can Pilgrim. Her travels by faith can be also referenced in the 2021 Oscar-winning film Nomadland, with her lifestyle as a full-time nomad in her Airstream RV. This book talks about healing as her trailblazing journeywoman of God finds peace through many storms of life. Today, you will find Rozell driving her Airstream across the United States as her book and life is featured on the national stage. Journeys with a Tin Can Pilgrim has topped the best-selling ratings on Amazon in #4 Business Travel Reference, #6 Travel Tips, and #9 Solo Travel. Rozell outlines her featured opinion article which is featured in her most recent blog, Changes and Transitions, speaking to the upcoming holiday season and the personal community she has built through her nomadic journey in her Airstream.
"As we pass into autumn, we enter into a season of change and transitions. The leaves begin to glow yellow, orange and red, pumpkin spice becomes ubiquitous, and our thoughts turn to past things and to future things. It is a time of transformation all around us. For many of us, that only emphasizes the shift occurring in our own lives.
We are reminded that “There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens. A time to give birth, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant” (Eccles 3:1-2). In my book “Journeys with a Tin Can Pilgrim,” I offer a way to look at transitions with hope in the future and trust in God’s providence. My book is about change in the different seasons of life, about how I went from being a young ambitious lawyer, then a mother of two, then to starting over after divorce, and most recently to an unexpected call in the next stage of life.
More than three years ago, I sold my house in an urban suburb of Washington, D.C. and left my job as project manager and in-house counsel to become a wandering evangelist in an Airstream travel trailer. Not something I ever anticipated!
Yet, I’ve found great happiness and peace in this new stage of life. Whatever God has in mind for you, His plans can’t be beat. If your next stage involves RV travel, you’ll find helpful practical tips in my book. Plus, even if you do not travel, the book’s reflections on change apply to anyone facing a transition.
Change is part of the world God created where seasons come and go until the end of time. For me, change meant acquiring new skills. I had to learn how to drive a truck, how to back up a trailer, as well as basic maintenance for electric and plumbing that in my previous life I’d just have called someone to do for me.
I’ve also had to learn more humility about what I can and can’t do. Being able to ask someone for help with an unexpected difficulty – in my case, a rollover accident — was new for me. While perhaps not a skill, humility comes with spiritual growth. Growth, you see, is another characteristic of a season of change. Bears and squirrels gather food for the winter, growing fat and securing their energy stores to winter over. Likewise, we have to find what we need for our personal journeys into a new season.
At the same time, we learn to let go, like the birds who fly south leaving rapidly cooling weather for warmer areas. Birds leave the painstakingly built nests where they raised their chicks and launched their fledglings. Empty nester is a very apt term! Just as my children took flight on their own out of the nest, it became my turn to take flight as well, to soar above where I’d been before. Leaving my comfort zone, I ventured out in trust like them. We all journeyed into new seasons of life – whether close to the beginning or nearer to the end. Detachment from the past is a characteristic of a season of change. Finally, there is beauty in change. Consider the leaves splashing color on the fall sky or the bright red berries that hungry birds gorge upon, greedily stuffing themselves for fuel on their flights. We see the fields shorn of their harvests, evoking the wispy hairs on a baby’s head or the stubble of a new Marine’s haircut. A season of change reveals different beauty in the same place, in the swaths and swales of the ground now revealed after harvest. Even the leaves that fall create soft layers on the forest floor that eventually change to rich soil, covering seeds that will sprout with new growth in the spring.
I cherish the clear crisp autumn days when bees drunk with honey dart about getting into my picnic food. The days grow shorter, the nights grow longer with crisper cooler air. While I love the stark beauty of the desert and the lush tropical foliage of our southernmost states like Florida, I treasure the constant change of seasons in most states.
In change what we find steady and true is the love of God. We confidently can hope in Him for whatever comes in the next season. It may be fierce storms or peaceful blankets of snow forming from tiny flakes, falling with whispers, covering all with silent beauty. Transitions don’t necessarily mean chronological change. I used to think anyone over forty was old. Then, I became forty and thought anyone over fifty was old, and so on. Now I realize that old is simply a state of mind. Seasoned or mature are better terms. I’ve met people much younger than me who are old in their attitude. Too often they are ruled by fear, afraid to keep doing things the same way but too timid to try new things. I remember feeling that way myself. Now, I rejoice to share the love of God with them and pray they too will find trust in the future He has for them.
Likewise, in nature, aging leaves fall, nourish the ground, and create soil to sustain new life. The harvest goes to feed people and we scatter grains to start new crops. The seeds that fall lie dormant in the cold until spring comes again, until we enter eternal life with the God who loves us.
Some of our best adventures await us in our later or seasoned years of life. Each of us has so much to give back to others and in doing that find ourselves and fulfillment. We all have a purpose, no matter what stage in life. It may be working in relief efforts, helping people build homes, reading to children at a library. Most simply, it is being a loving grandparent or neighbor or friend who cares, who becomes God’s hands and feet in the world.
About: Lynda Rozell was born and spent her childhood in New York. She has lived most of her life in Virginia, where she earned Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Foreign Affairs and a J.D. at the University of Virginia. After law school, she joined the firm Hunton & Williams as an associate on the Antitrust and Trade Regulation team in Washington, D.C. After several years, she accepted a position with the Federal Trade Commission as a staff attorney in the Enforcement Division of the Bureau of Consumer Protection. She subsequently worked as an Attorney Advisor on the personal staff of two presidential appointees to the Federal Trade Commission: Commissioner Roscoe B. Starek, III, then Commissioner Orson G. Swindle. Subsequently, Lynda worked as a project manager and in-house counsel for a Virginia non-profit.
In 2018, Lynda retired, moved to Florida, and embarked on her marvelous adventure as a full-time nomad, living in an Airstream travel trailer. She started a travel blog in 2019, www.tincanpilgrim.com. This book chronicles her transformation from her previous life to that of a Tin Can Pilgrim, including her ongoing growth in her faith and in the practical skills needed to live in and tow her Airstream trailer. Lynda seeks to live out her Catholic Christian faith in her ordinary, everyday life as she travels around the country visiting and writing about shrines, religious sites, and the beauty of Creation. She invites others into the community of nomads and wanderers that she has found on the road and shares the signposts that continue to lead her to radical trust in God.
Writing and editing have been key parts of Lynda’s personal and professional life. Her publications range from law review articles to an article in the Catholic Missourian. Last year she appeared on Catholic Faith Network and in 2019 was interviewed in print and on a podcast for the Arlington Catholic Herald. She enjoys volunteering, lecturing, photography, reading, and art, as well as spending time with her children and the many friends she has made in her travels across the country.