In December 2013, I wrote about Advent and shared my confession of our own season of waiting. I thought it appropriate to revisit that post as I await the birth of our long-awaited child.
The difficulty is in this time of liminal space (as described by Richard Rohr) in which we are no longer experiencing that which we are comfortable and oh so familiar; yet neither have we seen the resolution of the waiting, the answer, the direction, the everything-is-turning-out-fine moment. We are in the time of holding our breath, left to wait. We can choose to gasp for air, fight for our lives, flee the fearful expectancy. Or we can seek the Lord Jesus Christ in this uncertainty, looking for his movement, listening to his voice. Because even in the waiting, especially in the waiting, there is Jesus.
Dear One, I am waiting with an ever-increasing desire for your arrival. But this morning I prayed this prayer of confession –
Lord Jesus, As hard as this is to admit, I thank you for this long time of advent in my life. This journey of infertility may continue for many more years, I don’t know, but the grace, the blessing has come and is coming in the ways I’m learning to seek you. I imagine where my focus would be right now if I had gotten “my way” and it’s not likely to be totally on you. Teach me now how to keep company with Jesus, how to kindle communion with Him, that it may be an inextricable part of me in years to come.
I look forward to celebrating Advent with you in the years to come, teaching you about the birth of Jesus, the anxiety of Mary and Joseph, the obedience of the wise men and shepherds. I will walk you through the weeks leading up to the day we celebrate his incarnation, teaching you about the discipline of waiting and leading you to look for Jesus especially in those times when we hold our breath. In my hopeful waiting for you to become a part of my life, I pray I will become more and more connected to Jesus. I desire you deeply, but I want my Christ-seeking to always be at the forefront of pursuits. And I want you to know that about me.
I love how true all of those words still ring, two years later. Little Girl, you are my most treasured gift, the one for whom I’m prayed all my life. I have no idea why God chose to say “yes” after all these years, but we are rejoicing! And here I am, approaching the 3rd Sunday of Advent 38 weeks pregnant. Yes, I understand Mary’s journey a little more dearly. Yes, in some way, I am living the Advent. I am in the waiting and expectation of Christ Jesus’ birth; oh what cause for baited breath and celebration! And I am also smack dab in the middle of the waiting and expectation of your birth; not only the when will she arrive but how will Christ Jesus will use your life to change and sanctify me.
I am praying fervently for the labor and delivery work we’re going to do together, Child. I am praying for those moment to be holy, filled with the presence and peace of the Holy Spirit, beyond human understanding. And as I pray I find tears filling my eyes, for I recognize the great gift it is to partner with God in creation. To bring life into this world.
As we await Christmas and celebrate the birth of our Savior, I will share in Mary’s Song for the way the Lord has worked in my own life.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.