My sister-in-law called this evening and asked about our plans for Christmas. I laughed. I don’t even have plans for Halloween yet, and that’s six days away!
I don’t know where we’ll celebrate Christmas because I don’t know where we’ll be living in December. Will my husband have a new job by then? Where will the job be?
If we’re still 700 miles away from our extended families, then we won’t be traveling home for Christmas. We’ll celebrate Christmas here in our apartment, just the eight of us. And I’ll try to convince my children that Stouffer’s lasagna is the best Christmas dinner, just as I did last year. After all, Momma doesn’t want to spend all of Christmas Day in the kitchen, and they don’t really love turkey all that much anyway.
This living in limbo is not fun. Oh, I know there are important lessons to learn in the waiting. I know that God knows our future, even though we do not. I know that He is working good in us, molding us as we wait, vulnerable and helpless. I know all of that. But it’s still not fun.
In the meantime, I try to do the next thing, not thinking too far into the future. I wash the next load of laundry; I teach the next reading lesson; I make the next meal; I give the next hug. We aren’t making plans for next week because I might be dropping everything and packing boxes next week. We aren’t making plans for next month because we might be unpacking boxes in a new home next month. We are living today -right here, right now, trying to be content.
And my brain reminds the gnawing in my stomach and the stress-pains in my shoulders (Why must I always feel the weight of stress across my body as if I were carrying a physical, literal backpack of boulder-heavy anxiety?) — and my brain reminds the gnawing in my stomach and the stress-pains in my shoulders that God knows, even though I do not. And He has good plans, even better than what my finite mind could dream up. And this waiting will not last forever.
Maybe even tomorrow, we will know something . . .
How about you? Are you waiting on something or someone? Where will you celebrate Christmas? Can you feel stress as a physical weight? Do you think my kids will go for the Stouffer’s Christmas meal plan?