When we learned we were expecting our first child, my husband and I were excited and nervous as we awaited the birth. I remember those nine months being the longest wait ever! I longed to see our baby's precious little face and count his or her little toes and fingers and to hear that first blessed cry announcing a new life had just begun.
I could only image what the baby would look like, what we would feel and do as first-time parents! Would parenting come naturally or would it be a lifelong struggle of difficult decisions? Would the child be healthy and strong or would there be health issues, requiring more patience and care? While waiting I can remember times of great joy and anticipation and other times of doubt and fear.
Nearly 16 years have passed since that first, seemingly endless pregnancy when we were blessed with a healthy, beautiful little girl. Although that was the first "big" wait in our marriage, we have had many significant "waits" since then – waiting for medical tests, waiting for job offers, waiting for payday, waiting on the Lord for an answer to prayer, waiting, waiting, waiting.
In Lamentations, the author proclaims, "The Lord's unfailing love and mercy will be as fresh as the morning and as sure as the sunrise." Likewise, through the many times God has asked me to wait, he has taught me to place my hope in him, and he has proven himself "hope-worthy" time and again.
This holiday season may find you waiting for something, as well. My prayer is that you, too, can wait with the kind of hope that flows only from God's unfailing love and mercy.
Kim Quinn is children's coordinator for Woodcrest Chapel in Jefferson City and a consultant for Mary Kay Cosmetics.
This 2011 Advent devotion originally appeared in the November 17 issue of Word&Way.
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