One year ago today, I got a positive pregnancy test.
After months of mourning and healing, my husband and I were finally ready to set aside our fears and “what ifs.” Love had begun to overflow the shaky walls that we’d built, and new hopes and dreams were blossoming in place of pain. Our grief had not been forgotten but our hearts felt called to stretch once more.
It was a quiet Monday morning when those two, pink lines first appeared in my hands. This family was growing again, and I felt nothing but pure joy.
After a quick trip to the store, the toddler and I spent the rest of the day decorating a Popcorn Cake and munching on marshmallows. I knew exactly how we were going to surprise my husband with the baby news. I topped the gooey dessert with a mini-bunting that announced, “Mama’s Going to Pop!” and my son and I sucked on Smarties while the cake chilled. The kitchen counter was dusted with cinnamon and fluffy, white marshmallows: the scent of hope and anticipation, the flavour of possibility.
A year later, I can still see the love and excitement that was poured into that cake; the look of shock and amazement that crossed my husbands face at the sight of it. I never dreamed that we’d be here, a year later, still waiting on a baby.
It’s not easy to be patient. It’s not easy to wait and to love and to have your heart broken time and time again. A year ago, I didn’t know that I had more good-byes in store; I didn’t know that we’d still be here, twelve months later, aching and wondering, and hoping and longing.
“How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?”
Psalm 13:1 (ESV)
It’s not the first time we’ve found ourselves in this place of waiting, and it certainly won’t be the last. And maybe today, you’re in a place of waiting too.
Throughout our lives, we often find ourselves in these periods of uncertainty. We wait on marriage, and children, healing and restoration, jobs, relationships, and retirement; but for all that waiting, we’re not very good at it. We’re not satisfied in the quiet. We’re not content in the intervals. We want firm timelines and prompt, concrete responses; and more than anything, we just want to arrive at wherever it is we’re going.
As I look back over the disappointments and heartache of this past year, I hear the soft, still voice of One calling me closer to Him. I hear the gentle admonishment that “fulfillment is found in Christ alone.” These words prod gently against my soul, an ever-ready reminder that our hope for tomorrow is not found in the answers to which we seek; our hope is built upon the faithfulness and sovereignty of the eternal God we serve.
Dear friend, I feel your pain. I know that this wait stretches out before you indefinitely, and that your heart longs for something more. With empty hands, you’ve cried out for answers and have been met with silence. You feel frustrated and worn with uncertainty. You are aching and dejected, but know that through it all, God is here.
I know how easy it is to get distracted during these times of waiting. It’s easy for us to start placing our hope in temporary solutions to immediate problems; or to wait upon the illusive moment when everything will be just a little bit better than it is right now. But in this place of waiting, do not press pause on life. Draw near to the God who has proven Himself faithful across the generations; push forward in faith, and listen attentively to His voice. We may wait, but we do not wait without purpose.
In this time of unrest, may our satisfaction be found in Christ alone.
“Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Romans 5:3 (ESV)
What areas in life are you waiting on today?