The Wonder in Waiting

Ask any pregnant woman who’s only a few weeks away from delivering, and she will most likely tell you that one of the biggest “wonder” in waiting is wondering when in the world the baby will get here so she’ll feel better.

This is especially true in my daughter’s case. She’s had an awful first pregnancy. She’s had morning/afternoon/evening sickness almost every day, and none of the anti-nausea medications have helped. She’s been hospitalized with dehydration twice and has had to have IV fluids at home off and on for months. She has heartburn every day, and there are only certain foods she can eat without being sick. Her back and hips are hurting so bad it’s hard to sit for any length of time, and hard to get a good night’s sleep.

Don’t get me wrong…she and her husband are very excited over their soon-to-be-born daughter. They’re wondering who she’ll look like (I’m betting on my daughter). If she’ll be born with hair, and if it’ll be curly. They’re wondering what it’ll be like to be parents, and be responsible for the life of someone else.

They’re nervous, too, especially our daughter, because she’s never had a baby before, and as much as her friends have been able to tell her about their experiences, it’s different for every mother, and she’s wondering what it will really be like.

And she’s wondering what it will be like to hold her own daughter in her arms for the very first time.

There’s wonder in every kind of waiting.

We wonder if we’ll get that new job we’ve interviewed for. Then we wonder how we’ll do when we actually start.

A young girl wonders if that first date with the guy who asked her out will be fun and lead to a relationship, or result in another miserable evening.

A nursing student wonders and worries if she’s studied enough to pass her final test so she can complete her dream.

These are wonders. But it’s a wonder of anticipating whether or not something will happen. It’s curiosity. And too often our wonder stays in that definition, instead of the other definition of wonder.

Wonder is also a noun. It means awe. Amazement. A feeling of surprise at the beauty of something.

Children know the wonder of waiting. Yes, they’re impatient, and they don’t wait for things very well. But when something wonderful happens for them, when their waiting for a reward is over, and it’s finally given to them, the joy in their faces is without equal. You can literally see the amazement and awe…the wonder…on their faces.

Too often we adults merely just anticipate something happening rather than being amazed when it does. We easily lose the miracle, the joy, of the moment.

Anticipating the event happening, the waiting for something to happen, should make us excited about the new possibilities coming our way. And when the call comes, when the event takes place, when the dream is realized…we should be as excited and ALMOST as much in awe and amazement as our daughter and son-in-law will be when they hold their newborn daughter for the first time.

The sacrifice and pain are sometimes part of the waiting. But when that wait is over, and the rewards are received, you realize it’s all worth it.

What are you waiting for? Are you wondering when it will happen? Or are you waiting for your moment of wonder? And when it comes what will you do with it? Will you simply say “finally!” or like a child, will you be thankful and thrilled with the amazement of the moment?

Don’t be afraid to be like a child again, and take time to enjoy the wonder that comes from the waiting. Because you never know what’s around the corner.

When the Confetti is Gone

Times Square was filled with people. Thousands of them cheering and screaming and waiting for the ball to drop. There were party hats and noisemakers. Streamers and confetti. Entertainers and TV cameras. Each and every one couldn’t wait til that magic moment.

You could almost feel the anticipation as we watched the activity on TV in the comfort of our home, like millions of others across the country and the world.

Like us, they were waiting. Across the globe other time zones had already passed into the new year, and the cameras would occasionally switch to show the other celebrations that were already over….almost as quickly as they began.

In the scope of mere seconds, another year had ended, and another had begun. We were all excited, as we celebrated a new beginning, watched fireworks and tossed confetti, called and texted friends and wished them “Happy New Year!”, and then….what next?

Within a half hour Times Square was almost empty, except for those whose job it was to clean up after the party was over. The celebrants had left, moving on to other parties to find another reason to celebrate, or going back to hotel rooms or homes, as the feeling of euphoria and excitement they’d just experienced slowly left them, and the same old feelings they’d tried to leave behind returned. The confetti and streamers that had been tossed in the air a short time ago, were already being swept away and discarded…forgotten. They were no longer needed or wanted. Because there was no more anticipation or excitement; nothing to look forward to. Really? Are you sure about that?
Life often hits us like that. We spend so much time preparing for and anticipating an important event…and when it’s over, we’re let down. Almost depressed. We dissect what took place, look at the pictures, share memories with friends, but we can’t quite seem to capture that exact feeling again. We keep looking for that same excitement to reoccur, and we’re disappointed when it seems to be back to business as usual.

Or is it back to business as usual because we allow it to be?

We forget how to look ahead with expectancy and excitement, unless it’s for some big special event coming up. We forget there are little things to be excited about, as well as the excitement and anticipation of things to come that we don’t even know about. There are things we’ve been hoping for, and praying for, but we’re almost to the point of giving up on them. Because we’ve been waiting so long, and we just don’t think it’s going to ever happen.

But guess what! It is! Isaiah 43:19 tells us, “Look at the new thing I am going to do. It is already happening. Don’t you see it?” (NCV) We only need to look with our spiritual eyes and heart. We need to see it as already accomplished and begin thanking the Lord that it’s already done. Because He has promised us, and we know that those promises are always fulfilled!

I’m guilty of feeling that way, too. More often than I’d like to be. But this year I’m making a serious effort to change that! I am determined not to go back to that old way of thinking, and I’m going to start seeing all of those things as already done. There’s so much to look forward to in this coming year. The birth of our first granddaughter in May is the only one I really know about, but I know there are many more exciting blessings coming our way! I just don’t know when they will occur, or exactly what they will be, but I know they are coming.

So I’m getting out the confetti and the streamers (and maybe a few balloons), and I’m getting ready!

How about your joining me in the celebration?