This has been the LONGEST year of my life! Before this year, I’d have said that the wait from age 7 to age 10 took the longest.

It was around the age of 7 that I made a decision for baptism but was informed that I was too young to follow through with my decision. In retrospect, I think the elders were right to hold off on allowing me to be baptized. It allowed time for the decision to be solidified, tested my commitment, and provided an opportunity to get grounded in the teachings of the Bible.

The other thing I began waiting for at age 7 was to become a Pathfinder. They started a club at my church and you had to be 10yrs old to join it. My 11yr old brother joined and they made an exception for my 9yr old sister to get in a year early. But, in spite of my beggings and pleadings, they could not let me in 3yrs early (although I thought myself mature enough).

Finally, when I was 10, I joined the Pathfinder club and was cleared for baptism! Those three years took f.o.r.e.v.e.r. because I was waiting on the fulfillment of some significant life events.

But this year has been, by far, the longest year of my life. Probably because it has been filled with multiple significant life events.

Getting married in May, for one, was a big deal. Funny thing is, at the time, it didn’t seem that huge of a deal – it just felt right. And moving into the same living quarters with my husband also felt like the natural progression of our friendship. Looking back at our May wedding pictures, though, I realize how inexpressibly happy I was at that time. May 10, 2015 was probably the best day of this year for me.

A month or so after our May wedding, my husband and I learnt that we would be welcoming a new member into our newly established family! It was a happy surprise! And fraught, since then, with oh so many emotions. It’s waiting for this baby to arrive that has slowed time down the most for me this year.

No-one ever told me that being pregnant takes a LONG time! Everyday is long and the nights are even longer (with all the trips to the bathroom). It takes forever to get from one week to the next, let alone from one trimester to the next – Firstly because of the nausea, then the fatigue, then the heaviness of carrying extra weight and the discomfort of any postural position…be it sitting, or lying down.

We’re down to 6 weeks before our due date. I am so glad to be counting down weeks in the single digits now! Yes, I’m excited to meet our son! But I’m also excited to have my body back. And to have my brain back – it currently feels like mush (something else I wasn’t forewarned about).

ps: everyone’s experience of pregnancy, I’ve been educated, is different. Even each successive pregnancy differs for each Mom. So if God should so bless us with another child in the future, maybe it’ll fly by next time!

So with my mushy brain, I had the privilege of addressing the General Conference in session for one of the morning devotions. Being in my first trimester and feeling nauseated and exhausted, all I remember about the experience was much prayer and gratitude to God for sustaining me through the experience! The fact that a snippet from my sermon that day was used in a Young Turks video about Ben Carson later in the year just underscores God’s work in spite of ourselves.

After our second wedding in Zimbabwe (which was another undertaking altogether), Arch and I moved all our stuff to Lansing where I started a new job with an old employer. The weight of starting at a new job was mitigated by the fact that I was working with some old friends and that some of my responsibilities were familiar.

Arch and I also started searching for a house to call home. It only took us a month to find the place. With pre-approval letter in hand, we moved forward with the mortgage process only to be declined one week before our closing date. Thankfully, the sellers were willing to wait while we started the whole process again with another lender. <sigh> I’ll write about that whole experience another time – it was terribly trying!

With only two days to the end of the year, we were finally able to close on our new home! And end the housing saga. Thank God!

So in summary:

This year I got married, got pregnant, spoke at the international gathering of the world church, started a new job and bought a house. Those are the major points.

It’s been a long year, filled with very high points and very trying moments. And I’m so thankful for God’s constant guidance through it all. He is so faithful!

As soon as the baby arrives, I’m pretty sure everything will speed up again. Remains to be seen. For now, I wish you all a happy new year filled with the presence of God at every step.