Friday, July 12, 2013

Due Date

On this day last year, my second daughter was due to be born. Her older sister was 5 days 'late' so I expected to wait a little longer for her arrival. I did not, however, expect to be pregnant 16 days later. I wrote the post below on July 28, 2012. 

I have now been pregnant for 296 days.

That's a pretty significant amount of time to sustain another life inside of you. It's a lot of time to consider the future and attempt to prepare for it. And it's quite a lengthy period to wait.

Many of you have shared this journey with me but I wanted to officially take some time, in this space, to reflect on the awesomeness of these last 296 days. Remembering God's faithfulness is one way I continue to remain hopeful for what lies ahead!
This I recall to my mind; therefore I have HOPE:
the Lord's lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning.
Great is your faithfulness.
"The Lord is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore, I have HOPE in him."
The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the person who seeks him.
                           ~ the prophet Jeremiah, in his Lamentations (3:21-25)  
This passage has been a repeated and encouraging theme for most of my walk with God. In fact, waiting has been so prevalent in my Christian journey that it's the name of my blog and the most common theme in all my journals over the years. So truly, I should not be surprised that this pregnancy has been another source of waiting, hoping, and trusting in God.

For those of you who follow my blog, you may suspect, as I do, that my recent series on pregnancy and birth is no coincidence. I have been wondering if the Holy Spirit is preparing me for the possibility that the birth of my second child will not be at home and may not be natural. That would be just God's way! Most women have a c-section or hospital birth with their first child, then choose homebirth the second (or 3rd) time around. Given so many other stories in my life, it would not at all surprise me if God granted me such an amazing homebirth with Maren, only to land me in the hospital the second time around. Upside-down nature of his ways, so to speak.

God has been sustaining and providing for me every moment of these 296 days. In particular -
  • he has preserved my health and the health of this baby
  • he has given me the most delightful and understanding 3.5 year old imaginable
  • he has blessed me with a mother-in-law who continues to rearrange her schedule and cancel plans in order to be available both now and in the hour of baby's birth
  • he has surrounded me with a close circle of prayer warriors who listen, encourage, and lift up my needs in all circumstances
  • he keeps sending friends to play with Maren, bring me food, pamper me, and just generally lift my spirits at the most timely moments (i.e., when I'm just about to have a complete meltdown)
  • he reminds me of his grace and gives me visions for the future
  • he has provided many moments of connecting with my husband and daughter, of enjoying our little family of 3, before our family changes
For all of these moments, in the midst of all this waiting, despite the uncertainty of what will happen next, I am grateful. And I am grateful to be grateful right now and not just months from now, looking back. I want to be sanctified.

I have been made right in God’s sight by faith, and I have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ my Lord has done for me. Because of my faith, Christ has brought my into this place of undeserved privilege where I now stand, and I confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

I can rejoice, too, when I run into problems and trials, for I know how troubles can develop passionate patience in me, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping me alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, I'm never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—I can't round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into my life through the Holy Spirit!

~ encouragement from the apostle Paul to the Roman church (5:3-5)

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