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“And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there will be no end.” (Luke 1:30-32)

I often wonder how Mary felt in the days leading up to Jesus’ birth. More so, since I’ve had two Christmas babies of my own. What did it feel like to nurture and carry the Messiah? What physical pain and spiritual peace did she experience? When she received news of her unexpected pregnancy, Luke tells us, “Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19 ). Those nine months of waiting, as well as the resulting birth, were life changing.

Throughout our lives and in abundance over the last year, we’ve been through our own periods of waiting. They aren’t usually marked by something as extraordinary as giving birth to Jesus, or even always marked by such a specific framework of time. But they represent our periods of growth, the times we patiently wait. There’s opportunity to pause, to seek God, to ponder in our hearts ahead of what is to be birthed.

So, whatever you’re waiting for; results to come in, health to improve, to hug someone, to see family, to have questions answered, to see a vision come to fruition; I encourage you to use this season of advent to again embrace your own period of waiting, gain perspective, cherish opportunity of growth even through the aches and pains and channel Mary’s hopeful expectancy.

“I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits and in his word I put my hope” (Psalm 130 v 5).

Hannah B