My Sister Was Pregnant. My Friends Are Getting Engaged. Now What?
The greatest gift I need is grace, and grace, and grace, and grace.
"You're not going to do this to me, right?" My mom asked of me, pleading with sincere eyes, whilst my sister planned the details of her wedding.
Her big day was finally came. It was beautiful. The yacht club was immaculate. The florals were insane. Her dress was beautiful. The hair and makeup was set up to a tee. The guys looked dapper. The food was perfect. The guest list was all we could ever ask for. We had so much fun.
A few months after the wedding came the news of the sweetest little baby. My first niece to reside in the States. We were overjoyed. The baby shower was everything pink and pretty. There was a beautiful balloon arch cascading the walls. The country club served us so well. The desserts were to die for. The presents were piled. Her dress was stunning and she had that gorgeous pregnancy glow. Our other sister, the oldest, surprised her all the way from Germany. There were tears, laughs, bear hugs, and more. It was such an amazing day.
There is a feeling in my gut that unsettles me. A feeling that has encompassed parts of my heart and my life walking in her and my other older siblings footsteps. Being the baby of the family is sweet and fun, but there's something to be said about hand-me-downs and walking around town because our mama was too tired of driving the kiddos everywhere by the time the baby of the family needed to get somewhere.
This feeling seeps itself into the crevices of my being. I then become ungrateful, but not just ungrateful, I covet. I covet and I complain. I fear for my future that I won't be presented with the same gifts, benefits, and privileges that my sister or whoever else was graced with.
My friends are getting engaged. I have my boyfriend. He's so sweet. If I wrote about his goodness even in a broken body and a broken world, I could still babble on forever about his character, his heart, his work ethic, and more. But my friends are getting engaged. They're receiving my dream rings and planning their dream weddings. I'm pinned against the wall to either be thankful I have a boyfriend who leads and loves me or be ungrateful because said boyfriend hasn't got down on one knee. What do you think I do more of?
Sitting back, looking over the landscape of this travesty of a heart issue, I am brought to my knees in need of grace. Nowhere am I promised a husband, a wedding, a baby, monetary comfort, trips to Target where I pay for nothing, balloon walls, presents, desserts, or anything.
Every good and perfect gift is from God. God gives good gifts. The Word says that the Lord does not withhold anything good from those who walk uprightly.
In short, it's not my time to receive the good gifts of marriage or a baby. God wouldn't withhold it for me if it was my time. The Lord's timing is perfect. When I harp on what I don't have, it's an act of spitting in the face of the One who has given me all I have. When I harp on what I don't have, I am prizing the gifts over the Giver. While I am waiting on it to be my turn, I am turning my eyes from His majesty, His goodness, His grace and my desperate need of it.
There may never be a time where there's an engagement ring on my finger or a baby in my belly. I have no idea what the Lord has in store for me even if my future does look hopeful. But I can no longer covetously linger in the moment and seek things I hope will glorify God, while my idolatry of said things aren't glorifying to Him at all.
My distrust of God for my future needs to be turned from and forsaken. Being self-focused in all I think I want and need draws me away from the mission He has given me on earth. Even when my desires are God-given and good, putting them over the Giver still leaves me in the wrong place.
There is no reason for me to look to the future in fear because I may never get what I want. Let me call it was it is. I fear that my mom will be checked out by the time I get married and my wedding won't be anything special. I fear that by the time I have a baby, the baby will don the same hand-me-down lifestyle I sometimes would. I fear that my family won't be as excited, because they've already participated in these festivities time and time again, I am just another sud in the bucket.
If you're not disappointed in me reading this far, I don't believe you. But I write from the heart of my discontent to confess, to plead for grace, to openly struggle with a hopeful, humble heart that the Lord is at work in me, calling me back to Himself in new and fresh ways, so that I would be in awe of Him, and trust His goodness, even when my selfish heart wanders, and wanders, and wanders, and wanders.
This holiday season, if you're longing, single, waiting, pregnant, in grief, or whatever season of life you're walking in, I pray you'd look to the Giver of all gifts, instead of steadily wait for the gifts to roll in. Breath is a gift. Waking up is a gift. Sunshine is a gift. A warm blanket on a cold evening is a gift. A hug is a gift. None of which we are promised.
Put aside, in your heart, the presents, the balloons, the desire for perfection, the excess of dresses, and the expensive strollers. Be grateful for the people in your life. Be thankful for their presence, be thankful you have babies to welcome into the world, engagements to congratulate, and weddings to attend. Focus on the Giver.
I am preaching to my own heart.