Waiting for Babies to Grow

Have you ever grown impatient for something to happen in your life? Is there something that you have been wanting for a long time? Perhaps you sought an answer to prayer many years ago, but it seems as if God is not listening. We wait, and nothing happens. We cry out to God, but we don’t hear an answer. We know what the Bible says, and we are standing on God’s promises, but we have not yet experienced the blessing that we expect. During these times, we need to ask ourselves what God is teaching us.

Yesterday, I saw a video posted on social media where a young, pregnant mother showed the growth of her belly throughout a 40-week pregnancy. For the first 10 weeks or so, there seemed to be no change in her appearance. During the second trimester, some growth could be noticed, but it was not completely obvious that she was carrying a baby. However, after week 30, her belly began to grow faster than a watermelon in late July.

Actually, watermelons are a great metaphor for babies growing in the womb. Not only are they about the same size, but they also grow because they are attached to their life source by a small, narrow cord. As long as the baby — or the watermelon — stays attached to the cord, they will continue to develop, but when the cord is cut, they can no longer benefit from the life-giver that nurtures and sustains them.

Jesus says, “I am the vine and you are the branches. The one who remains in Me, and I in him, will bear much fruit. For apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5 BSB). The word remain that Jesus uses in this statement is sometimes translated abide. He uses the same word in another place when he says, “If you continue in My word, you are truly My disciples” (John 8:31 BSB). This is the same Greek word that the two disciples on the road to Emmaus use when they ask Jesus to “stay” with them at their house instead of continuing along his journey.

These four words — remain, abide, continue, and stay — all refer to the same concept. They can be understood in exactly the same way as a baby who must endure the womb for 40 weeks until it is fully formed and ready to be born. With each week that passes, the baby grows larger and stronger. It would be disastrous to take a baby from the womb after only 15 weeks of development because it cannot survive on its own. Rather, it must remain within the warm, protective, life-sustaining womb of its mother. It must bide its time patiently, waiting for its appointed day to be born.

Jesus instructs us that we must remain in him. We must wait in his presence. We must stay in fellowship with him. We must remain under his teaching. We cannot go anywhere or do anything without him. Unfortunately, many of us are like impatient watermelons who sprout legs and try to run from the garden, but the moment we cut the cord from the One who gives us life, our ability to accomplish anything ceases.

What is it that God is teaching you as you wait for him to accomplish the thing that you have asked him to do? Perhaps you are looking in the wrong direction. Could it be that God is helping you to grow as his child, asking you to remain in his presence, to keep yourself connected to Jesus — our spiritual umbilical cord who nourishes us with eternal life from our heavenly father? Sometimes, you might be waiting for a miracle while God is waiting for you!

When I think of that mother who documented the growth of her baby each week, I am reminded of how God views us in our dark, lonely, and uncomfortable circumstances. With each passing week, the mother smiled to see her body changing, knowing that the time was fast approaching for her child to be delivered, waiting to see the infant’s face, longing to hold the baby in her arms. A pregnant mother gives us a picture of God who patiently waits for his children to be born. We feel alone, but we are inside him. He knows we have nothing to fear because he is protecting and sustaining us, enveloping us in his body.

As you wait for the Lord to answer your prayers, remain in him. abide in his love, stay in his word, and wait in his presence. As the day of your deliverance approaches, you will sense the changes coming upon you rapidly, like a woman in labor. As Jesus said, “It will be like a woman suffering the pains of labor. When her child is born, her anguish gives way to joy because she has brought a new baby into the world” (John 16:21 NLT).

[What are you waiting for? If you need support, click here to set up an appointment with a Christian counselor].

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