I’m thrilled to host my dear friend Julie Sanders as my guest today. The following post is based on her new book “Expectant,” a devotional book for expecting Moms. Enjoy!
By the time the news came, she had long since laid her expectations to rest.
For so many years, she hoped with hesitation turned to heaviness. Elizabeth waited to feel her womb full with a child long enough for other women to conceive, grow, give birth, and raise their beloveds to families of their own. But her womb and her arms were empty.
And then her husband Zechariah went to serve in the temple. As if to begin to sweep away their shared expectations, an angel of the Lord met him beside the altar. Their prayers had been heard. The messenger brought news that God would do more than they had asked. He would defy their age and destroy what everyone expected, giving them a son. The aged mom-to-be secretly said, “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me,” (Luke 1:25a).
Whether a woman embarks on the mothering journey at a traditional time in a typical way, or at a surprising time in singular way, God is revealed. Children are given under the watchful eye of the most tender heavenly Father.
God knows our longings and our limitations, and He sees that every mother’s heart is expectant.
As the angel foretold, Elizabeth conceived, though her husband waited wordlessly for his lack of faith. He believed in the power of his expectations, instead of the One who exceeds our hopes. Together, the aged man and wife became the humbled father and mother, for becoming a parent has a way of exposing our weakness and sending us to our knees. The elderly first-time mother surely wondered if she could manage an infant in her season of life, but as I share in EXPECTANT, “If He has given you a child to nurture, He can give you the energy and wisdom and desire to raise that child well.”
After most of a lifetime spent waiting and wondering, God did more than Elizabeth could ask or imagine.
Her son became John the Baptist, born just before Jesus and sent to announce the coming of the Prince of Peace. At the perfect time, in the perfect way, He exceeded her expectations.
Could it be that God wants to do more than what you expect in your life and in the lives of your family members? Mothers have the chance to see God do more than a mom’s heart can ever hope.
It’s easy to fall into expecting the normal pathway of motherhood and family. When it looks different, I find myself struggling to have faith. Help me to trust You to know and do what’s best. Would you lead me in my journey as a woman and maybe as a mom, and would you go beyond my small expectations and do more?
Julie lives where tea is sweet and grits are cheesy. She and her husband of 25 years have two nearly grown kids. EXPECTANT: 40 Devotions for New and Expectant Moms was born when God brought a group of young couples into their lives, just as they began to long to grow their families. Julie loves to teach God’s word to women in her hometown and across the globe; she is passionate about fighting human trafficking and helping women of all tribes and tongues find God’s peace for life. Check out Julie’s blog home Come Have a Peace (www.juliesanders.org) and Marriage Mondays to find reasons for peace and information about her ministry. EXPECTANT is available at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
Thanks for sharing your beautiful heart with us, Julie!
Sweet friend, do you find yourself in a season of waiting and wondering? How can we pray for you?
Share with us please!
With an expectant heart,
Oh, the season of waiting and wondering …. it keeps me dependent and going to the Lord daily! Thank you for hosting and sharing this today!
Oh Cindy and Julie,
I loved your post today. So much so, I put it on our Women in Leadership website today for scores of women to read all over the country. I love what you’ve both shared. I love you both,