I believe, that even before I could plan out anything in my life, God placed in my heart a very strong desire to be a Mom.
I thought of, planned, pondered, and dreamt of nothing more than being a Mom.
After we were married, we were both ready to start our family. Four heartbreaking years followed. Anguish, loss, frustration, sadness, anger. I felt them all. Mostly I felt my hope being crushed into nothing. Until there was nothing left of me, and I had fallen to my knees, crying to my Abba. Why? Why did you give me this desire? Why did you give me this desire and then not allow it to be fulfilled? Why are you letting me hurt so much for so long? Why?
I was so hopeless, I didn’t really believe He would answer me. I was just crying out….
I remember the day that our two pastor’s and an elder and their wives laid their hands on us and prayed over us. They knew and had seen our hurt and disappointment go on. I remember telling Pastor Russ, how I’d come to really hate going to work, or to the store, or even just leaving the house. Because all I could see were women with their bellies swollen with pregnancy. Babes in strollers. Frustrated parents yelling at their children (how dare they). Oh how I would give anything to have that.
I can still hear his raspy words ring truth in my ears. Words meant for gentle correcting and guiding.
You need to stop thinking of yourself. When you go to work, pray how Jesus will use you for His Kingdom. When you go to the store, pray for those little babes to grow up to know Jesus. When you see parents frustrated and yelling at their kids, pray! And you need to trust. Because we serve a God who is faithful and He loves to give good gifts to His children.
I think I just stood there staring at him. But I obediently said I would try.
The next several months, I did just that. I prayed when I went to work. I prayed when I was at the store. I prayed all through my days, first out of obedience, and then out of a growing love for my Father. I know that Russ knew what he was talking about because pretty soon, I wasn’t so focused on what I didn’t have, or what I wanted. Instead I was thinking about others. And I was finding joy in life. Friends and family members were all having babies, and I spent my time with them, loving them rather than avoiding them. Helping them rather than making excuses. Praying for them, not just for myself.
Early in the spring, my very dear friend Candi invited me to a women’s lunch meeting. On a whim I went. I don’t know or remember too much about what the woman was speaking on, but I do remember what happened there. She was talking about Jesus, the bridegroom and us His bride, when all of the sudden, she looked up, straight at me all the way in the back of the room, and said, “I’m sorry but I need to stop for a minute. The Holy Spirit wants someone here to know that once you stop idolizing your own ambitions, His gifts will come pouring out over your life. Our God is faithful.”
And that was it. No real explanation to follow, she just simply went on with her talk.
But I knew. I had an overwhelming understanding. It was me. I had turned my desire into having children into my god. I had spent all of my time, my energy, my resources forcing it to happen. I suddenly could look back and see what I had been doing all those years. I had been hosting my very own Pitty Party for one.
I could sort of feel myself slouching in my chair, hoping that she didn’t know it was me she had to interrupt her lesson for. I snuck out to my car, and bawled my eyes out the whole drive home.
Through the summer, I felt an increasing amount of peace and joy. A new found hope in my faithful Lord. But my desire to be a momma still lingered pretty strong. We’d set up an appointment with the top infertility doc in the state, kind of our last stop with the whole IVF thing. We were originally told we’d have to wait about 3 months to get in, but a last minute cancellation allowed us to squeeze an appointment in just 2 days later. Wow! We were both hopeful and excited. I think I prayed nonstop. Lord give us answers. No more grey stuff. Black or White please. Yes or No.
After our hour long meeting with nurses, financial secretaries, and lots of paper work, we finally met with the doctor. Who basically told us not to hold our breath. We could go for it, but he wouldn’t recommend it. Nothing was really in our favor for IVF to work. And our bank account was really not in our favor for being able to do it.
Now I could tell you that we both left that appointment praising God for His answer. One of us was. That was me. I was so relieved, because I knew what logically would follow was a path to adoption that I think God had really been preparing me for all along.
However Saul must have been in an entirely different meeting than I was, because we got into the car, and he drove us straight to the car dealership. He was going to trade in our new car, for a junker, and use the money to pay for IVF. And then he called a realtor. He was going to sell our house and move into a cheap apartment to pay for the IVF. And then he looked at the paper, to look for a second job, to pay for…..well you get the idea.
I sort of stood back, just taking it all in. I reminded him that the doctor said there wasn’t a chance of us getting pregnant. Remember….you were there, right? He wouldn’t hear it. His heart wasn’t ready. I went home feeling so sad. Here we finally had an answer, only we couldn’t move forward because Saul wasn’t ready. Why hadn’t I been praying for him too?
So I started praying right then. For God to unite us. For God to reveal His plans to us. For peace.
I didn’t pray for a baby. I didn’t pray for adoption. I just prayed God’s will be done.
Not even 24 hours later, Saul told me at breakfast to go ahead and call that adoption agency. I’m so ready to be Dad. Let’s get going with this thing!
After I picked my jaw up off the ground, I cried. And hugged him. And cried some more. God is so faithful!
(To be continued…)