I’m a bit of an artsy-sewy-creative type at heart, and at the beginning of my pregnancy I set out a few small projects that I wanted to get done before Nathan was born. During the first trimester, I was so sick and immobile but managed to make one toy. During the second, I had so much energy and motivation to do everything I had missed out on for months, that I didn’t complete anything. Now, today, I’ve finished off something that I’ve been working on for quite a while – a padded play mat:
I’m certainly no pro at sewing, so I was pretty impressed with the end result!
As I finish up my projects and face new ones (preparing Nathan’s clothes and bedding, cleaning out the pram and bassinet), the imminence of his arrival is very apparent. Most of my mind is eager and excited to stop the waiting and meet our baby, but then I’m reminded of all the productive ways I can invest my time while I’m still sitting in the virtual mother-to-be waiting room. And, if we’re honest, there are several times in life where we find ourselves just waiting for that next thing to happen, so that we can move on: to finish school and finally go to university, to finish university and finally be done with assignments and get a job, to finally get married, to finally have kids, to finally get that dream job.
We all do it. We all look ahead to that next thing that is going to get us from where we are to the ‘next and better’ position in life. It’s certainly good and wise to have goals, ideas and plans in mind, but we should never let our minds fall into the trap of living in the future, thus missing the opportunities we have to invest our time and efforts in what God has us doing now. For example:
- Pray. You may feel like all you’re doing is sitting around, waiting for God to just move you to where He wants you to be – so why not pray while you wait? Find out from your church, bible study and friendship groups who is in need of prayer, and pray for them. Better yet, follow up with them after a little while, to ask how things are going – one of the best ways to grow your appreciation of the power of God through prayer is to pray expecting Him to work, and seeing His answers at work.
- Invest in others. If you have the time and resources (you very likely do), why not catch up with a friend you haven’t seen in a while? Ask them how life has been going, how their relationship with God is, and about any struggles they’ve been facing – then just listen. Offer to help a friend move house or study for their exam. Offer to be available for lunch once a week. Share the gospel with your non-Christian friends. Spend time with people, and invest your effort, encouragement and resources in building them up. And don’t forget to be generous – with your words and actions as well as your money. A generous heart will multiply in the lives around those it gives to.
- Grow in thankfulness. Feeling a bit sad and sorry for yourself? I’m guilty of this one – being so caught up in being ‘stuck’ in the here and now that we lose sight of all we have to be thankful for. Pray about this with God – repent of any bad attitudes, and ask that He would give you grace and thankfulness.
- Love God more. The only way to get to know someone and grow an intimate relationship is to spend time with them. God has given us everything we need to know about Him in His Word, so why not devote more of your time to bible study? I encourage you to read the bible seeking to see God Himself – and not just the facts about Him, but through those facts coming to know Him more intimately. Spend time in prayer thanking, praising, confessing, admonishing, repenting, wondering, blessing, and loving. Your affection and intimacy for God is in direct proportion to your devotion to knowing Him through His word and through prayer.
I hope these encouraged you in wherever you are at right now. Please be praying that I would be more diligent and dedicated to doing the above things as I ‘wait’ for our baby boy to make his appearance! I would also love to be praying for you – if you’d like to email me any payer requests, feel free to visit the Prayer and Support Page here. I encourage you to pray through the above points and live them out – I guarantee it will enrich your relationship with God and the fruit will be a continued godly sanctification!