My life long dreams were to sing, serve the Lord in worship, to get married, and to be a mom. Specifically to carry babies. I wanted the whole experience. There is something about when you finally find out you are having a baby - everything changes.
Before I ever felt different, the awareness that I carried life shifted how I carried myself. My first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. And although the miscarriage occurred pretty early into the pregnancy, it was so heartbreaking because of the awareness of life that I was carrying. I have had 3 full term babies since, but because of a complication in delivery with my first baby all of my babies have been born via C-section. That was NOT my plan. Although, I’m in full support for moms who chose C-sections, it just wasn’t my first choice.
I remember feeling like a complete failure because I couldn’t deliver my firstborn naturally. I was later informed, by the doctors and nurses, that the C-section saved my baby’s life as the cord was short, wrapped around his neck, and would have choked the baby in delivery. I realized that I had a choice. I could mourn the process or delight in the answer to my greatest heart desire. I made the decision with the next babies to accept and find joy in the “out of the box” method of delivery.
Just like the birthing process, each promise of God is carried differently. Each one requires something different. Our job is to care for ourselves and to listen closely for the needs of the “baby” we are carrying.
If you have had a baby or are close to someone who has, you come to understand there are so many lonely, unseen parts of pregnancy. Especially in the early weeks, where you may know but no one else is aware of what you are carrying. Yet we continue to steward that little one inside us with the joy, hope, and promise of what lies within and before us.
So much about pregnancy and birthing reminds me of what it feels like to carry promises and words yet fulfilled. This resonates deeply with me in my season of waiting to see my dreams and desires come to fruition.
The Bible is full of people who were given words and promises from God and had very long seasons of waiting and wondering. Some of our patterns in the waiting find us questioning and doubting if we heard correctly. The thought comes in that maybe THE PROMISE was for someone else. I feel passionate in this season to encourage the body and to speak to hearts that may be losing hope.
I have spent the last few weeks thinking of Mary the mother of Jesus. Jesus, the Messiah, had been prophesied hundreds of years before he actually was born. When He came, it was to the most unlikely person in the most unlikely way. I have begun to ponder some of these things in my heart. The Lord was looking for a “Yes” that would be in complete surrender with total trust and without fear. He needed someone who would keep the promise safe no matter the cost.
We know the story, but there were some things highlighted to me in regards to carrying and birthing promise. Mary’s “yes” did not make her popular. It made her open to criticism. Joseph, who also decided to say “Yes”, accepted the challenge of fathering a Savior without really knowing what would happen. But in the word and promise he was given, he was also given everything He needed to support Mary and father Jesus, the Son of God. God is looking for those with a “Yes” in their hearts, who will not abort the promise. He is looking for those who will not give up and who will be open to how he decides to bring the promise about. When it was time to deliver the promise of Jesus, Mary and Joseph were moved out of comfort, away from home and family, on a journey, and Jesus would be born in a place where there was “No Room”. They were not sent to wide open doors and grand hospitality.
The story of Jesus’ birth we hear about is mostly in the night hours, in darkness of a cold, lowly cave. The angels herald to lowly shepherds, in a cold, dark field. A star in the night led the Wisemen on a journey across lonely deserts to find the King. I began to think about that night and in the lowly place where Jesus was birthed and where the announcement was made. It wasn’t broad daylight and in the temple or a palace. It wasn’t the Radio City Music Hall version of the nativity full of pomp, circumstance and pageantry. It was completely different than what people had waited for. Yet it was the most powerful, precious answer and fulfillment we could ever receive.
I felt the Lord stir my heart in the midst of this beloved story. Be faithful to steward your dream and promise when it is not popular and when no one is looking. Be open to how God will bring things about in your life as He is perfecting your promise and making you ready. Meet Jesus in the night seasons and keep your gaze focused as you search Him out. The light in the darkness allows us to shut all other things out and to see what we need to see. Let the Light of Heaven and promise of Jesus invade your heart as you read. Be encouraged as you co-labor to see His kingdom established through your life!