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:: waiting (and some big news)

“but thou, oh Lord

are a shield for me

my glory

and the lifter of my head”

 

These days are long.

We wait. For papers and signatures and phone calls and for the power to come back on. For the news that we can go home. For what’s next.

A friend recently reminded me that “we will always be waiting for something.”

I’m only 25, so I’m just learning about the waiting – that it never ends. The things we’re waiting for eventually come and then there’s a new wait. It’s good – the waiting – because it means we’re hoping for something. And hope is a good thing.

I’m learning that if the thread that ties all of our hopes together isn’t eternal, we will eventually grow weary. That way we handle the hopes that string us along this thread to the eternal is actually the way we worship. Expectant stillness. Engaged waiting. Never hurried, but never stagnant.

So I’m viewing this waiting as worship. I can glorify God while I wait by simply enjoying where I am. Hence the capture gratitude posts. I want to remember the tiny blessings of this time spent in waiting.

And then this morning as I was processing all of the waiting I’ve been through in the past year and wondering how much longer, an email rolled into my inbox this that brought with it an equal measure of joy and sorrow.

“WE BOUGHT OUR TICKETS!” she wrote.

The season of waiting is ending. Two mothers on the other side of the world are packing their bags and preparing to make the journey that will end their waiting. And ours. And the waiting of two unsuspecting baby girls. Sweet Pea just learned how to say “dada” and soon she’ll meet him face to face.

My days of waiting (and with them my days of motherhood) will end before mid-October. It puts the waiting in perspective when I can count on one hand the number of days I have left to wait.

And now my worship is my ability to hand over this treasure with joy. My worship is doing the next right thing.

From behind my computer screen I looked up to see Sweet Pea grinning at me from behind her rubber ducky. She has no concept of the waiting she’s been subjected to for the past seven months. She has no idea that I’m not the mother that is going to tuck her into bed next week. Forever. She has no idea what goodness awaits her on the other side of this waiting. She just trusts. She trusts me to feed her and bathe her and hold her. She’ll trust me when I hand her to her mama and don’t take her back. She’ll trust her mama to feed her and bathe her and hold her. Her worship is simple baby trust.

That’s the kind of trust I want to live. Simple. Knowing that the person in control of my life has a plan for me that is better than I could ever imagine, even when my heart is breaking.

So, this week we will make memories. I’ll breathe deep that baby smell. I’ll play with her toes and try my best to teach her to say “mama”. I’ll show her pictures of what’s to come and I’ll take pictures to help her remember. We’ll both remember this strange season. Seven months of being mother and daughter, knowing that it was just a season, but knowing that while we waited we could be nothing less. We’ll try on twenty tiny outfits to find the perfect one for the airport. We’ll charge camera batteries and brush hair and prepare to do it all over again.

This is what we’ve been waiting for. Two more goodbyes. Two more new beginnings.

New, after all, is almost always the result of waiting. Often the birth of something new is hidden in the death of something old.

But if this is a death, I am promised a resurrection. If this is a loss, I am promised redemption. If this is an end, I am promised a beginning.

And, as He reminded me recently, nothing can be wasted. And so my new worship is trust.

Trust that he is good, even though I won’t have any children this Mother’s Day. Trust that he is good because this year five little ones will get to celebrate Mother’s Day with the mothers that were created to be theirs before they were even born.

So, it’s with joy and great expectancy that we count down the last few days of this season. There are many hurdles yet to overcome before things are official. We need you to keep praying still. I’m looking forward to sharing more details along the way, but wanted you to be preparing, with us, for the handing over that will happen so soon. You’ve loved us and these babies so well. You deserved to be the first to know.

Rachel blogged about how she’s viewing this new end of a season and the handing off of baby Eden. You can read her thoughts here.
  • Nyakoojo Isaac - Can we become friends on face book.ReplyCancel

  • chalice - not sure how i stumbled upon this post tonight except for the providence of God. needed these words as i grieve a season of loss and am learning what worship needs to look like for me right now as i grieve. thanks for writing, mandie. even in times where i’m sure you sit down behind your computer and think “where do i even begin?” or “how could i possibly convey all that is swirling around in my head and heart?” …thanks for writing anyway. it’s a gift to me. and so many others.

    wrote these words down on a card stock make shift book mark tonight to reflect on daily:

    “Often the birth of something new is hidden in the death of something old.

    But if this is a death, I am promised a resurrection. If this is a loss, I am promised redemption. If this is an end, I am promised a beginning.

    And, as He reminded me recently, nothing can be wasted. And so my new worship is trust.”

    thank you.ReplyCancel

    • Mandie Joy - Sweet Chalice, I hate that this is a hard season for you, but love that you’re listening to Him in it. I owe you an email…to ask you a favor. Stay tuned. :)ReplyCancel

  • Esty - You? are breaking my heart. Totally. If I didn’t know that God REFILLS and OVERFLOWS when we are depleted I would weep. But. He Does.

    love you soReplyCancel

  • MandieJoy - Thank you all for your encouraging words. It’s so exciting to share this journey with so many, both old friends and stranger-friends. You guys have blessed us this year!ReplyCancel

  • Katie Turner - Dearest Mandie, I think this whole year has been worship.
    May these last days be the sweetest of all, and remember…
    your mama is waiting for you!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Syler - You continue to bless my life more than you could ever fathom through writing about your experience of being a Mom. You maturity far surpasses your chronological age, and I continue to be amazed at all God is doing in you and through you. Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you for answering His call on your life and for loving these precious children as you have….as a Mom…as Jesus loves! I can’t wait to read every time I receive an email that there is an update. I will be leading a team to Uganda in June and am counting down the days. I cannot get there quickly enough. I have a good friend, on whose ministry board I serve, that will be moving there in January and working at Amani. God is good, all the time!!!

    Blessings abundant to you, Mandie!

    LisaReplyCancel

  • Kelsey - Beautifully written, Mandy. Praying for you and Rachel.ReplyCancel

  • shawnda - Mandie. What a sacrifice. Truly. There are no words for this calling He has called you to – the middle mom. It’s one of the truest forms of sacrificial love. THANK YOU!!! And may His grace abound!!!!!

    One waiting sister to another.ReplyCancel

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