December, the month of endings, the month of finishing, the month of preparation for a new year, a new beginnings. I love this time of year. But if I’m honest, sometimes in all the hustle of this season, I wish it all away and wish that next year was here already.
We are a people that are focused on the new, the novel, the next big thing. And we have tendency to want to skip over now and rush ahead.
I have not been able to shake this phrase over the last few months.
pregnant pause: a pause that gives the impression that it will be followed by something significant
And naturally, at this time of year, I think of Mary, and the revelation that she was carrying the Messiah. There is a real sense that the bible skips over nine months there. In the space of half a chapter, she is given her calling, and then it is fulfilled.
She sings a song of joy at the revelation being given, and we see her treasuring memories in her heart at the arrival of her son. However, the bible doesn’t tell us what those nine months were like for her.
Though we can guess. In these nine months, Mary is experiencing the physical discomfort normal in pregnancy; morning sickness, aches and pains, the discomfort that comes from growing a baby. She is also experiencing social discomfort as a young unwed, pregnant woman would in those times.
Her time between the vision being given to her and it being realised is uncomfortable.
How do we handle the time between, the time of preparation for Christmas and next year? The time of preparation between the end of one thing and the beginning of another?
The phrase “pregnant pause” works so well here, because we live in a society where silence and waiting is often so uncomfortable.
How do we handle the pause, the preparation, the quiet, the time of internal growth with no tangible outward manifestation yet?
I’m struggling with this at the moment, the tension between the vision, the pause and the revelation. But even within the Easter story there is the pause. The often overlooked Saturday of pain and unrealised hope.
So what I’ve got to is the fact that this place of pause is valid too. It has a purpose, it is doing secret internal growth that will not be seen for months, it is uncomfortable, it is quiet, but it is important.
If I’m honest I would wish it away and hurry on to the next thing. But I know the pause has a purpose, so I choose to embrace the quiet, stop resisting the discomfort, and let the growing occur.
join me on the journey,