Of Bottles and Seasons | The Speckled Goat: Of Bottles and Seasons


Of Bottles and Seasons

I plopped the bottle into the mug of steaming water. It was Thanksgiving day, and not only were we surrounded by our loved ones, but also by those delicious Thanksgiving smells- turkey, pie, corn casserole... it was no wonder that my little guy was getting hungry.

After letting it warm for a while, I sat down to feed him.

"Why are you holding him like that?" my niece asked.

It was a good question.

When we brought our baby home from the NICU, we were sent with follow up appointment reminders, love and best wishes, an open pack of diapers, and instructions to continue doing "paced feeding" when giving little baby E a bottle.

Instead of held close and cradled in our arms, we hold him on his side, perpendicular to our bodies. Paced feeding requires careful watch- making sure the bottle has milk flowing when he's suckling, making sure that he doesn't suck in too much air, but tipping the bottle back to prevent the flow when he's not suckling. It's more an art than a science.

E loves his milk- that much is for certain. It's good for him. It makes him healthy and strong, provides him with the vitamins and minerals and calories he needs to grow. But too much milk all at once, as much as he might think he wants it, will make him choke.

About a week later, again feeding a hungry growing baby, I tipped his bottle back and thought about the paced feeding in my life.

While it's not exactly biblical, I wonder if God paces me.

I know He gives me such good things- things that keep me healthy and growing and strong- but sometimes I get impatient for the good things.

Like the baby here on my lap, after more than four long years of waiting.

If God had brought this little blessing earlier, maybe I would have missed some of the goodness of those childless years. Maybe I wouldn't have noticed so many of the blessings that I had right then and there. Maybe I wouldn't have joined that Bible study, or maybe we wouldn't have gone to Colorado and had that wonderful adventure last winter.

If I'd gotten too much in my impatience, I would have choked. I couldn't have fully digested all the nourishment at once. The blessings and lessons of brought by each good thing may have caught in my throat and not become a part of who God was making me to be.

Maybe too much goodness all at once takes away from the joy of each blessing coming in it's time.

Come to think of it, the Bible does say something about that, doesn't it?

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted:
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace. (Ecclesiastes 3, ESV)

All of those years that I spent asking God why He was saying no.... it just wasn't the right season, yet. I had to wait.

He knows what's best for me, even when I don't necessarily agree. He knows when I need more, and when I need to work on what I've got yet.

He's pacing me.

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  1. i love that God reveals Himself in the simple things of life, like a bird on a branch or a baby in our arms. All we have to do is look and see that He is teaching us and drawing us closer into Himself. Love the analogy! - Amy

  2. I think you are absolutely right! And His timing is always perfect, even when we don't think so! Enjoy little E because all too soon you are going to turn around and wonder at your little boy who towers over you!! The minutes and hours may creep by but the months and years fly!