Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Blessings - Time to Prepare

March 15, 2010.

It's a day I will never forget.
The day of our 20 week ultrasound.
The day we learned of Amelia's anencephaly.

The day itself was not a blessing, but that day and in the days that followed, Tim and I were blessed immeasurably in countless ways. For the remainder for our pregnancy we were given new perspective in the midst of our sorrow. As we prepared for Amelia's birth and death I often found myself thankful that we had been given time to grieve and to prepare. Knowing she wouldn't live, we prepared our hearts for moments rather than years. Our focus shifted from painting a nursery, buying a crib, registering for focusing solely on the gift that we had been given in our sweet Amelia Grace.

The season of Advent is upon us. As I sat in church during our Advent carols and reading service this past week, it occurred to me that, for the last three out of four years, during a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the birth of our Lord, I have had the joy of being an expecting mother myself.

The season of Advent invites us to prepare for the coming of our Lord as a little baby in a manger. It wasn't to long ago that we were preparing to meet our little Amelia. Last year we were preparing our hearts for the journey of pregnancy after a loss with baby Sam. I had thought perhaps this year would be different, feel different, since I am not expecting, but it hasn't.

I am still thankful for this time I have been given to prepare.

And so for the third year in a row,
I find myself waiting in expectation.
Preparing for that glorious and joyful moment
when I see the face of a little baby
whose life and death will change mine, forever.

The Birth of Jesus Foretold
 26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, 27 to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. 28 Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you![d]” 29 Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. 30 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel[e] forever; his Kingdom will never end!”
 34 Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”
 35 The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. 36 What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she’s now in her sixth month. 37 For nothing is impossible with God.[f]
 38 Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.
 Mary Visits Elizabeth
 39 A few days later Mary hurried to the hill country of Judea, to the town 40 where Zechariah lived. She entered the house and greeted Elizabeth. 41 At the sound of Mary’s greeting, Elizabeth’s child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 Elizabeth gave a glad cry and exclaimed to Mary, “God has blessed you above all women, and your child is blessed. 43 Why am I so honored, that the mother of my Lord should visit me? 44 When I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for joy. 45 You are blessed because you believed that the Lord would do what he said.”


Jennifer said...

I love how Advent provides reflections and just like you were given time to prepare your hearts for Amelia, we can prepare our hearts to celebrate the birth of a Savior. Love you friend!

Holly said...

I know I am thankful that we had time to prepare.