Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I Asked The Lord

Sometimes, church hits you in the face in a good way. This Sunday was one of those days for me. I was introduced to a hymn that could have been written by me [you know, if I was the poet/hymn writer type]. Fellow sufferers may relate. The hymn is "I Asked the Lord That I Might Grow," by John Newton. Here are the words:
I asked the Lord that I might grow
In faith, and love, and every grace;
Might more of His salvation know,
And seek, more earnestly, His face. 
’Twas He who taught me thus to pray,
And He, I trust, has answered prayer!
But it has been in such a way,
As almost drove me to despair. 
I hoped that in some favored hour,
At once He’d answer my request;
And by His love’s constraining pow’r,
Subdue my sins, and give me rest. 
Instead of this, He made me feel
The hidden evils of my heart;
And let the angry pow’rs of hell
Assault my soul in every part. 
Yea more, with His own hand He seemed
Intent to aggravate my woe;
Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,
Blasted my gourds, and laid me low. 
Lord, why is this, I trembling cried,
Wilt thou pursue thy worm to death?
“’Tis in this way, the Lord replied,
I answer prayer for grace and faith. 
These inward trials I employ,
From self, and pride, to set thee free;
And break thy schemes of earthly joy,
That thou may’st find thy all in Me.” 
In his sermon, the pastor talked about being angry with God. I have felt hurt and frustrated by God, but had never realized that I might be a little angry at Him, too. After all, I know He is good, I know His plan is better than mine, so why would I be angry?

One part of the song hit the nail on the head:
Yea more, with His own hand He seemed
Intent to aggravate my woe;
Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,
Blasted my gourds,* and laid me low.
There's the reason for my anger. I had a plan. God ruined it. He ripped it up, stomped on it, and carried out His instead. How rude!

As a planner, I like to know where to go, what to bring, and exactly what is going to happen. My plan was as follows:

  • Get married: check
  • Set an example to other couples of the right way to do birth control (FAM) by naturally preventing pregnancy during law school: check
  • Get pregnant as soon as law school ended, which would be easy after three years of charting: negatory
  • Have four biological children, then adopt three: about that...
It was a good plan, or so I thought. Now, I see some pride and control issues. Either way, God messed with my plan, and I think it really has made me angry. But, I don't want to stay there. May the mission be accomplished in my soul:
These inward trials I employ,
From self, and pride, to set thee free;
And break thy schemes of earthly joy,
That thou may’st find thy all in Me.
Through infertility and extended childlessness, may the Lord free me from pride and selfishness until I find my all in Him. It's scary to pray that, but I want it to be true. Will you join me?

*"Blasted my gourds" likely refers to Jonah 4:7, in which God sends a worm to chew the plant Jonah had trusted for shelter.

- This version of the song can be downloaded here:  I Asked The Lord [Emily Deloach]

This post is linked with Amateur Nester's Infertility Link Up, Titus 2sdays, and Monday Musings.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Waiting for the Day

I can't even wait. Let's skip to this part, please.

Amazing Love from Eric & Jenna on Vimeo.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Inside the Tears

Infertility has messed me up in ways I don't even understand. Here's a glimpse into a struggle with myself:

Davy, why are you crying?
Because the tears are below the surface much of the time and sometimes they just spill over.

Don't you know that God is good?
Yes, He is. But I don't know what to do with that truth when it hurts. 

Are you believing that Jesus + Nothing = Everything, or have you decided that Jesus + Children = Everything?
If I had to choose between Christ and children, I would choose Christ. However, I feel confident that He has children for us. 

Seriously, why are you still crying?
I don't even know anymore. Maybe because people around me are having kids. People who didn't even know each other when we got married have kids now. People who got married after we started trying to conceive have two-year-olds and new babies. 

Would you want different for them?
No. I would not want anyone to go through pain like ours. Somehow, it still hurts.

It sounds like you are dealing with sins such as envy and selfishness.
Am I? I'm having a hard time distinguishing between godly sorrow and sin.

You should just trust in God's promises.
Okay, like this one from Psalm 128?
Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in his ways!You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands; you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.
Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house;your children will be like olive shoots around your table.Behold, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord.
That one sure comes up a lot, but it doesn't seem to apply to us. Instead, it feels like salt in an open wound. Are we not part of "everyone"? Do we not fear the Lord enough?

Don't get caught up on that. The Bible includes several stories about barren women, and their barrenness is not due to lack of faith. Rather, it is for God's unique purposes.
Right. [Deep breaths]. 

I don't want to guess God's purposes, but have definitely thought about our future child(ren). We would probably not commit so much time and money into the infant adoption process if we had been able to conceive.
Sure, but we are just wasting time. The years are slipping by. 

The time is not wasted. If God has a specific child out there for us (and we believe He does), He needs to work every detail out accordingly. That child has a specific birthday, and every step of your process, from infertility to home study to approval to waiting, is pointing toward that day. You cannot go too fast or too slow. God has everything under control and is working out His perfect plan.
I know. I do trust Him, and I really look forward to seeing the plan unfold. But our arms are so empty. Our house is SO quiet. We feel so alone. 

You aren't.

Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.

This post is linked up with Titus 2sDay and the Infertility Link-Up