"Guess I overdid the sweets last night." A pretty normal post holiday thought. But last year, that thought was just the beginning of our new normal. A year ago, following our family Christmas, I was not feeling so well and starting to get the first few hints that something was not quite right. The day after returning home, a positive pregnancy test confirmed those thoughts and prompted a whole lot more.
Really, God? After 3 kids in 3 years, I'm kind of ready to slow down. Didn't You just hear me say that to my husband?
I mean Zeke just came home. I'm enjoying the time I have when it is just the two of us. And are You sure Zeke is ready to handle a change like this?
Haven't You considered the logistics? 4 kids under the age of 7? That sounds, um, scary.
I kind of had this planned out, that we would wait a bit and then maybe do one more adoption, perhaps a bit older child. But now? With this new baby, the beds will be full and there's no room in the van.
And what about going back to work? It seemed like I was in a good place to start something new, maybe supervising student teachers or finding another job that uses this master's degree that is currently just collecting dust?
At the time, my brain was swirling with doubt and fear and disbelief. Why bless someone with a pregnancy when that person was perfectly content not being pregnant?
And even today, I'm not really sure why God thought I needed this baby. Maybe it was about the months of morning sickness where I couldn't be the mom and wife I wanted to be. Those months provided me with an opportunity to see my husband in a new way and to remember that I am not super woman. Maybe it was about seeing my husband as the dad of a newborn or my kids as the siblings of an infant. Watching those moments is such a joy. Maybe it was was about the birth experience itself. Labor and delivery is a lot about surrender and reliance on the God who made you and created you as a woman. Maybe it was about tapping into another side of motherhood that comes with having a baby who changes daily and depends instantly upon you. I missed those early days with my other three.
Or maybe it was about God saying "You defined this experience as impossible. But I told you it was not." It seemed impossible to grow our family so quickly, to meet the needs of everyone. It seemed impossible to control the chaos that the numbers 4 under 7 suggests, especially when so many others are quick to tell you how busy and crazy your life must be. It seemed impossible to deal with the basic facts of labor and delivery and the demands of a new baby. But God is proving that impossible is not as impossible as it seems.
Or maybe just maybe, it's not about me. Maybe it's a bit like a burning bush moment. When God called Moses at the burning bush, it was a moment when God wanted to redefine Moses, to turn Moses from a shepherd into a liberating leader who would guide the Israelites out of slavery. But before God could redefine Moses, God defined Himself.
When Moses asked God, "'Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?'". God's replied "“I am who I am.'" He is Yahweh; He is who He is.
Maybe it's a bit about God being God, that He has no need to have a reason for what He does. That even with this in mind, He still acts towards us in loving, good and personal ways because that is the essence of His character. That He is the standard for good, truth, and perfection, meaning His plan for my life is good, full of truth, and perfect. That He has no beginning and no end but yet the One who has no creator revels in being a Creator.
So tonight I'm thankful for those double blue lines-what a strong reminder of how compelling it is to have a God whose ways are not my ways. And while my humanness seeks for a rational reason, I can't help but think of how the Yahweh God of Israel is still the Yahweh God of today, a God who purposes our lives so that we might grow and learn, a God who orchestrates events in amazing non coincidental ways, a God who does what He does because He is.