Have you ever been 9 1/2 months pregnant?

You know that feeling when you think you are going to pop--you can barely breathe? You waddle and your ankles are swollen and everything is an effort? I gained 50 pounds with each of my babies--it was just my way. I started out at 5'8" and 121 pounds and went up from there. Sarah came on her due date, though it did take 22 hours of labor and she had to go immediately to the emergency room for care.

Joel, in Vienna, was delivered an hour and 15 minutes after my water broke at 2 weeks early. Nathan was also 2 weeks early and came out in 45 minutes to an hour, (after false labor several times!)

So, when I was due with Joy, I knew, from my own experience, that I came on my due date or before. So when two weeks early passed, I became more impatient. Surely on her due date. Then her due date came and went. More pleading with God, even more about to burst. More waddling. I had been at bed rest since week 32 because they had thought I was going to come early.

Finally, I was resting in bed one evening and something black fell down from the ceiling--it was a scorpion and it stung me on the belly. What a funny sight it must have been to see me scream and lunge out of bed. It did sting badly and even with all the dancing around and jumping, Joy stayed in another week and finally came out almost a month after her due date! Speaking of popping--and I was just shy of 42!

This summer, I finally realized, that spiritually speaking, I, and  my family members have been 9 1/2 months pregnant---way overdue for some things to fall into place. Kids waiting on jobs, never hearing back from anyone. Kids applying for bank loans for cars---never hearing back and then hearing "no" because of college loans. Kids waiting for doors to open---not even a squeek--Clay and I waiting for his book to come out. Ministry waiting on some financial issues and waiting on things to get done---seemed that all we have been doing, day after day, after day, is waiting--to no avail.

Then, in the last 24 hours, two of my children have given birth--two jobs "suddenly" dropped into their laps that determine futures, stability, and ease of mind for me. I am so very thankful--now only 2 babies left to pop out.

I told one of my children that waiting seemed to be the thing I had done the most for most of my life.

So, some thoughts on waiting---

Trust in the LORD and do good; (right now in the midst of the waiting, do good--to someone or yourself or for a cause--it helps to be productive.) Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. (Live well, dwell, stay where you are--God is at work. Cultivating faithfulness suggests a picture of gardening--it must be planted, watered, have time to grow--faithfulness is indeed a worthy quality that cannot be developed any other way than by time invested with slow results over a long period of keeping at the cultivation and gardening of this quality.)

4 Delight yourself in the LORD; (Meanwhile, ponder sweet Jesus, be happy in Him, trust that He sees you; look for His fingerprints; cherish Him, by your will--a command--delight in the Lord--joy in Him, now, while you are waiting!) And He will give you the desires of your heart. (He cares deeply for who you are and who He made you to be. He will work--in time. You will not be pregnant with prayer and no delivery forever--an answer will eventually come and you will see that He cared for you and your desires and that He was working.)

5 Commit your way to the LORD, (Keep committing your way, your thoughts, your hopes, your desires, your requests to Him--dedicate your way--your path to Him and ask Him for wisdom as to what to do at each step.) Trust also in Him, and He will do it. (As an act of your will, trust Him, believe Him, believe that He is good--wait, wait, wait with choosing to hope in your heart.) He will do it--in His time and in His way--meanwhile conforming your heart and character to the Lord Jesus--and usually you are a lot more humble for having waited!)

6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light And your judgment as the noonday. (It will come suddenly, it will come indeed, He will be faithful, He is God--it is not a democracy with Him--He is leading and guiding and working--ours is to believe and wait!)

7 Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; (Learn, as an act of your will to rest in the moment--to be at peace, to cultivate a peaceful, patient heart---(ouch--so hard for me to do!) But trying to hurry God or doing a "taking your husband to your maid servant" sort of "I will help God out," only leads to trouble that you may well never get over. Wait patiently--don't have a cow!) Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, (This Psalm actually tells the waiting person 4 times not to fret--it leads only to evil doing. I am afraid I have been doing a little fretting lately, but have been correcting my soul's attitude--fret not! Fret not! Fret not today! Now!) Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.

And the last verse I will share:

But the humble will inherit the land And will delight themselves in abundant prosperity. (Oh, so that was one of God's goals--humble in heart--not demanding, or fidgeting, but trusting waiting patiently, being willing to go without--humble--Jesus said he was humble--to learn from Him--so that is one of the purposes in waiting--developing me into a humble person, not one who demands his own way or grumbles and complains when things do not work out--but humble!)

Now, I am so grateful at least some of my waiting is over and I will not ask to be further tested, knowing there will be more tests ahead.

But, even as it is a relief to have the baby out and the weight off, so today, I will bask in the knowledge that after all this time, two babies have been birthed and I will take joy in this moment.