When Waiting is a Verb

by | Dec 5, 2011 | Uncategorized

We packed my suitcase, headed for the hospital.  Nine months and it was time to deliver this boy into the world. But just like my first pregnancy, I wasn’t progressing and things came to a halt. 

When my doula met me at the hospital, I was laying on the bed feeling the lump in my throat. The one that once moved with honest words, would trigger a waterfall of tears.

I was petrified to have a boy.  I grew up without a father in my house, my parents were divorced when I was three, and I didn’t have the first clue about how to take care of a boy.  All the horrible things women say to you when you are pregnant kept swirling around in my head.  How boys bounce off the walls with energy, pee all over everything, wear you out.

Those thoughts coupled with my first delivery experience – 24 hours of labor – had me in a state of panic and fear.

In a stern but loving way, my doula said I wasn’t ready.  That we needed to gather our things, go have some lunch, and pray through the fear until I got peace.  “He isn’t ready until you are ready,” she said.

I felt like a child disciplined by her teacher for showing up early to class. Humiliated and thankful someone cared all at the same time.

But really, the main reason I showed up early is because I was tired of waiting. Uncomfortable with waiting. I was trying to make something happen in the midst of my impatience.

“Most of life is about two kinds of waiting,” H says from the pulpit on Sunday, “waiting in anticipation and expectancy or waiting in fear and dread.  God uses all of our waiting for his purposes.”

And remember, the Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. ~2 Peter 3:15

H and I left the hospital that day and had lunch, picked out a refrigerator for the house we were moving into that week, and spent some time in prayer giving my fears over to God about having a baby boy.  That doula talked me through every single contraction and Harrison came into the world four hours later.  The nurses made over him as if he was the first baby they had ever seen.

Waiting is a verb.  God wants us to be active in our waiting, not passive.

So how do we wait?

  • Prepare – Respond to God and His promises, engage in conversation and excavate the purpose in waiting.
  • Repent – If Christ returned today, what would I do to make things right?
  • Live like it Matters – If the Gospel is true then nothing else matters. Be a full participant in redemption knowing we have a unique call to live differently.

During Advent, this season of waiting, I am thankful today for that window of time found between expectant waiting for the birth of my son and holding him in my arms.  It gave me the opportunity to find peace and grab onto destiny, overcome fear.

As you anticipate the celebration of Christ’s birth, what are you waiting for?  Are you an active or passive participant in waiting?

And so,dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. ~2 Peter 3: 14

Linking with Ann today to count the gifts:

  • For homemade soup on a cold day.
  • Prayer that changes things.
  • Walking the streets of London to capture beauty.
  • Connecting with old friends and feeling like time stood still in between conversations.
  • Scones and clotted cream at Harrods with my sweetheart.
  • A seat on the underground next to the boy eating candy in his school blazer.
  • Christmas lights that illuminate a city.
  • My boy wearing his London t-shirt to school this morning.
  • Finding purpose in waiting because all of life is waiting for final redemption.

Also linking today with Graceful, Playdates, Soli Deo Gloria

Subscribe for Shelly’s stories and free resources here: https://shellymillerwriter.com/free-resources/


  1. Celebrating Eve

    Shelly this is beautiful. I found your blog from your post on Ann’s blog this morning. I have read a few of your past posts and they are inspiring. Thank you for using your gifts. I also attend an Anglican church in Falls Church, Virginia. God bless you and your family this Advent. God bless you as you blog!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Kerry-Ann, so happy to meet you. I know of your church and you are blessed. Thanks so much for you kind words today, they have truly made my day.

  2. Kelly

    Prayer that changes things! What a glorious gift! He doesn’t need us, yet invites us to participate in His grand plans for the world. blessings to you from Uganda

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Kelly, I have stood on the border of Uganda – on the Rwanda side but never entered the country. So happy to meet you here. Yes, I learned that awhile ago, that He doesn’t need us. But my, how we need Him. So glad you left a comment.

  3. Pamela

    Scones and collated cream at Harolds….sounds like a delightful memory.

    Love your three steps of waiting. I need to work on implementing them in my life.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I should fess up that they are actually my husbands three steps to actively wait. He spoke about this in church yesterday and I took good notes!

  4. Angi

    Your writing just exudes Jesus! I love how you have action points at the end!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Angi, your words are an answer to my prayers every day when I hit the publish button. So, thank you for leaving a comment and I am so thankful for your visit.

  5. Theresa Miller

    Oh this is a beautiful example of waiting and just how to wait with anticipation this Advent season. Loved your story!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Theresa. A Sunday sermon most always conjers up a memory to go along with it for me. It wasn’t until I started taking notes that all the thoughts started to come to the forefront. So glad you you enjoyed it!

  6. Dea Moore

    Live like it matters…..I am going to keep that one close today. I think I live that way but then I turn a corner and I think, what am I doing that really matters? Everything matters because of the fact that my life is hidden in Christ. Am I willing to wait on Him to birth his life through me into a world that needs his love? Yes, but in his timing, actively waiting—with anticipation.

    Enjoying your beautiful photos 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Dea, love all your processing here. It always makes me think even further than when I wrote the story. So glad you keep coming back!

  7. Charity Singleton

    Excavating the purpose – I like the feel of that phrase. We have to dig down deep, sometimes, to see what God has us waiting for. But we have to dig carefully lest we damage the treasure we are looking for.

    Beautiful post.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Charity, your words are so true. Thanks so much for the Advent link up and for your words of encouragement here!

  8. Deidra

    That doula is a genius! What great wisdom. And you? You got a refrigerator and a baby boy all on the same day? Wow!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Deidra, she was actually a pastors wife who does this for people on the side after retiring as a nurse. It was a wonderful experience having her there for that breakthrough. I know, picking out a refrigerator before I have a baby. Crazy!

  9. Jess

    This post is lovely. (Sent here from Misha’s blog). I enjoyed what I read here- I’ll be back!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Jess, so glad you visited from Misha’s place. Oh how I love that one. Please come back, would love to get to know you. Blessings!

  10. Megan Willome

    Came over here from Charity’s. Anyway, I almost wrote something very similar. The waiting at the end of pregnancy … ugh. And I lacked your wise doula.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Megan, I see you around the comments on other blogs. So honored to have you at my place. I agree with your UGH! Won’t be doing that again luckily but sometimes other waiting is even harder.

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