Looking back, I'm not sure that I enjoyed the excitement of the anticipation as much as I should have. By September because of the physical discomfort and stress of preparing for baby I was ready to be done. I'm not sure I really took the time to marvel at the process that was taking place in my body, the creation of this little person who is now my Sawyer.
In our modern world we've lost the art of anticipating. We live in an instant gratification world - we want something and we want it now. We get upset when our smart phones are being slow and we can't log on to facebook - I mean the message has to go to space and back and we can't wait two seconds. We get frustrated when someone doesn't respond to our email right away. We get mad when our flights are delayed. People, you are flying through the air at hundreds of miles per hour. That is amazing! Remember the days of not having the internet in your pocket...or even the internet at all. When you had to use the yellow pages to find a business phone number or actually call someone or look at a map to get directions. Remember when people wrote letters? You had to wait TWO WHOLE WEEKS for someone to get your letter and respond and send one back
*okay, I'll be honest. I wasn't much of a letter writer and by the time I got to high school and college, email had taken over. But I'm sure some of you remember right?
Advent has started. We are eagerly anticipating the birth of our Savior. Can you imagine how Mary felt in the last days of her pregnancy? Was she caught up in her swollen ankles and having to pee every 5 minutes or did she enjoy the wait, knowing that the little boy in her belly would be the Messiah. Did she spend her quiet moments in conversation with our Lord who was also in her belly? Was she fearful or peaceful? Excited or terrifed?
“The days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will fulfill the good promise I made to the people of Israel and Judah.” “In those days and at that time I will make a righteous Branch sprout from David’s line; he will do what is just and right in the land. In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safety. This is the name by which it will be called: The LORD Our Righteous Savior.” Jeremiah 33:14–16
In the past few Christmas seasons, my time has been focused more on buying gifts, attending parties, attempting to bake, decorating the house, preparing for travel all while working 40+ hours per week. Honestly, it hasn't been focused at all on the anticipation of Christmas morning, enjoying time with God, focusing on the birth of Jesus. Its a blur of 3 weeks and then its over, to be forgotten again until the next December.
I'm hopeful that this year is different. I'm not working full time this year (at least not in an office). As a mother, I feel a little closer connection to what Mary must have been feeling. I want my son to someday understand the true meaning of this season and that will start with how I choose to focus my time. Yes, I have gotten the tree up and we've broken out the Christmas lights. Yes, I hope to do some holiday baking (and actually have some time to bake). Yes, we will go to a Christmas party or two. But I hope to enjoy the season. I hope to spend more time reading my bible and focusing on my relationship with Christ. I want to enjoy Christmas morning, enjoy getting gifts for my friends and family, and enjoy the anticipation of the wait. I hope you do too. After all, we are waiting for God's most precious gift to us.
*our pastor showed the following video in church last Sunday. I thought it was adorable and often how I feel about giving gifts....