Delayed Fruit Tastes Sweeter by Julie Arduini

Happy New Year! I missed my last December post not remembering what day it was thanks to the holiday schedule. I was also basking in what had to be one of our best Christmas celebrations to date.

After we had our first ever Christmas with the four of us in our new house, we traveled back to our hometown to visit family. This time we met my husband’s adult children en route and drove most of the way together and spent precious days with them as we caught up with both sides of my husband’s and my family.

I can’t remember when I’ve enjoyed so much laughter.

All four Arduini children plus girlfriends.

All four Arduini children plus girlfriends.

I got thinking, it didn’t seem that long ago when I was praying for such a thing. When I first met the kids they weren’t even teenagers. The very week we started dating my now husband learned they were moving  from Upstate NY to Wisconsin. We didn’t see them often, but when we did, we poured a year’s worth of love and laughs into those visits.

The goodbyes were heart wrenching.

I kept praying.

The distance was hard, especially in a time before Skype and texting.

But as they grew up and became young adults, we saw the fruit. For kids of divorce, they were well-adjusted and very close siblings. They had a lot of family that loved them from all sides. Although it wasn’t a perfect situation, we understood God knew what He’d been doing all along.

As time marched on and not only were they adults, but we also had kids of our own, the fruit became a harvest. When his daughter married I got to watch former spouses chat with fond memories and laughter. Former in laws greet my husband with kindness. Everyone reach out to me and our kids with hospitality and warmth. I still bask in the blessing that their maternal grandmother switched place settings at the reception so she could sit by me. It was an absolute perfect day.

My husband asked how did I know things would turn out so well? I didn’t even hesitate.

“When you’ve laid down fifteen years of prayer, you know it’s not going to return void.”

This last visit was more bounty. Grown children with solid jobs and healthy relationships. All kids interacting together as if they saw each other every day. A beaming father. So much laughter.

As a young wife, I wanted the distance erased and tears gone. Thankfully God asked me to pray. When we gathered a couple weeks ago we remembered those goodbyes. As hard as they were, we realized the silver lining. The older siblings have a strong bond and took amazing care of each other when traveling. They were surrounded by their mom’s family and love, their dad’s, their step dad and sister, and me, my family, and their siblings. When we Skype and they are at their mom’s, it’s fun to watch my husband interact with her. They had good times, and I love that they are able to remember them.

If you’re going through a situation you’ve prayed and prayed for and it seems like nothing is happening, don’t believe the lie. I believed a lot of activity was going on in heaven before it pulled down to Earth. And although it took more time than I naively thought it should, the fruit of those prayers is sweeter than anything I can describe.

My prayers are with you!

***

Starting in February, Julie Arduini newsletter subscribers will receive the exclusive Upstate NY romance, Crumbs and Embers. To subscribe for free, complete the form in the right sidebar of Julie Arduini.com and watch for activation. For a limited time, new subscribers also receive the 2014 novella, Match Made in Heaven. Spread the word!

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About juliearduini

Julie Arduini loves to encourage readers to surrender the good, the bad, and ---maybe one day---the chocolate. She’s the author of ENTRUSTED: Surrendering the Present, as well as ENTANGLED: Surrendering the Past. The last book in the series, ENGAGED: Surrendering the Future, is coming soon. Her devotional, FINDING FREEDOM THROUGH SURRENDER, features the surrender themes and characters from the series. She also shares her story in the infertility devotional, A WALK IN THE VALLEY. She blogs every other Wednesday for Christians Read, and starting April 2017, will be part of the Inspy Romance blog. She resides in Ohio with her husband, two children, and secret chocolate stash. Learn more by visiting her at http://juliearduini.com, where she invites readers to subscribe to her monthly newsletter full of resources and giveaway opportunities.
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