“For a Child will be born to us, a son will be given to us.... And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace”
Isaiah 9:6 (NASB)
It would be several millenniums since they ate the fruit.
Since the first shedding of blood.
Since the perfect relationship between God and man was severed.
Within the spoken words of God to Adam and Eve, who were shivering in their shame and nakedness, God made a promise that Someone will come and end the curse of sin. As soon as the remnants of fruit hit the ground, Jesus planned to come.
However, He didn’t come right away. God began His story of redemption through building a people of His own. Through one man – Abraham. Then Isaac. Then Jacob. And hundreds of generations more were part of the generations who walked with God and were waiting for the Promised Son. Story after story of God and man together were told and written before the Baby cried His first cry.
The people of God learned how to worship and follow God, while they...waited.
In my own life, nothing has driven me into the graduate school of faith more than times of waiting. In fact, I think all of my life of faith has been about waiting and trusting the God whom I know is faithful. He has proven His faithfulness through the stories in Scripture and in lives all around me, including my own. But if you look closely at the great stories of the Bible, God rarely was a God of instant gratification. Before the miracles, there are long periods of time where people had to hold unto faith and trust that God will do what He said He would.
We know those periods of waiting. Of praying year after year for those we love to come to faith. Of sitting in waiting room praying for healing. Of empty nursery prayers. Prodigal son prayers. In those times, it is tempting to give into the lie of the evil one that says God has forgotten about us or isn’t good. We are tempted to forget the truth of God who has shown us in His word and all around us that He is and will be faithful to us. We are tempted, yet He is so good to remind us that He is still present and still loving us while we wait.
In our move to farm country, we left behind family and friends and a life of 20 years. My kids and I knew no one and we felt like strangers in a strange land. A couple of days after we had settled into our tiny farmhouse, a wave of “what have we done” swept over me. As I walked outside, I turned around and saw a metal cross in the banister of the front porch I hadn’t seen before. I cannot fully explain what seized me at that moment except I stood and wept with the realization that God was so present and He, again, was present and was going to be faithful to us, as He always is.
At this Christmas time, we celebrate the fulfillment of the Genesis 3 promise. As we hear the carols, decorate the tree, and wrap the gifts, we are proclaiming to the world that God is faithful. God has NEVER forgotten us and He never will. No matter how dark the night seems, God asks us to keep walking in the dark, following the surest of Voices. The Bible reminds us that we are in good company with countless people who kept walking with and toward the Father while in the waiting room of faith.
On the Silent Night, the Baby in the manger is the greatest gift from the endless faithful God.
Mary Quillin is a city-girl-turned-country-girl in her new life in North Dakota. She has been married to her hubby for 16 years and has 3 wonderfully, different kids who have begun their teen years (and she would appreciate all the prayers as possible on that note). After many years in full time ministry, Mary is learning how to show up and daily discover the journey of being available for whatever Jesus leads her to. She spends her days trying to build a welcoming shabby chic home in the heartland of North Dakota while learning to write and run.