Jun 15, 2021

While You Wait for a Child

By Carol Yenish
Five years. I waited five years before being given the opportunity to celebrate Mother’s Day with a child of my own. My five years doesn’t sound so long when we think of women who may never see that day, or when we remember Sara in Genesis 21 who waited decades before witnessing the birth of her son Isaac. But it’s still true that each year when Mother’s Day rolled around it was painful to notice the growing groups in the pews around me in church—to see that where four members once sat there were now five, or six, or seven; while my family dent in the pew remained at two…two….two.
Even one year of waiting can feel like an eternity when you hope and pray with the passion of Hannah, for month after month in anguish, to be given success.  It can feel so lonely to work through your disappointment each cycle with even the most loving husband at your side. 

Hannah too, despite Elkanah’s great love for her, was grieved by the constant taunting of more fruitful wombs around her. “And Elkanah, her husband, said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep?  And why do you not eat? And why is your heart sad?  Am I not more to you than ten sons?” (1 Samuel 1:8).
That’s the thing with waiting for a child.  There is no amount of food that can satisfy the hunger for a chance to give birth. There is no limit to the number of happy and satisfying days you can experience and yet still long to give them up for ones filled with children of your own. There is no comfort in knowing you are waiting, even while you cling to the promise of God’s plan for your life to “prosper you, and not to harm you” as He says in Jeremiah 29:11. The disappointments of this world are heavy even though we have hope for the future.
I wanted to say something to make the weight of waiting for a child feel lighter, but I don’t know that I can.  Maybe knowing that you are not alone will help for a moment. Maybe caring for the children of others will help fill that gap for you as it did for me. Maybe you will create something spectacular while you have the freedom. Maybe you will spread the extra love you have to give on your friends and neighbors.  Maybe you will not have to wait much longer, or maybe you will be given the strength to wait longer still.  May God bless you and fill you with His peace that passes all our understanding.  Amen.


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Carol Yenish is a Director of Christian Education graduate from Concordia University Chicago. She went on to serve as an LCMS missionary in Japan before returning to marry her husband in 2010.  They currently live in Jackson, Mississippi where they likely have the largest (or the only) collection of snow shovels in the neighborhood from their home state of Minnesota. Carol goes to bed looking forward to her morning coffee, and wakes up looking forward to writing after her children fall asleep.

Post image: "Samuel Dedicated by Hannah at the Temple" by Frank W.W. Topham. Image is in the public domain in the United States. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this beautiful article ❤️. After 19 years of marriage my husband and I were blessed with a beautiful baby girl! I was 44 years old!! I prayed for a baby, taught at our church's preschool to help fill that void, loved those precious little ones and their families. Then when the time was right God blessed me. Looking back I do see His timing was indeed perfect. My daughter is now 12 years old and a blessing to myself and others. Thanks be to God 🙏✝️❤️


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