On Thursday, I shared how difficult these past two weeks have been for me. Of course, within the difficult time there have been many good moments, moments when friends have said the right encouraging word or moments when I've felt the peace of God flood over me. This weekend had more of those, and I wanted to write them down.
Friday night, Rob and I left for Lakewood, where I would be leading worship for a small women's gathering put on by our previous church and denomination. They had asked me months ago, and I said yes, obviously not realizing the difficult time I'd be in. I nearly cancelled last week but changed my mind, deciding to trust that God would give me the strength. I'm so glad I didn't miss the opportunity to be encouraged.
As I began the worship time, I shared with them how fitting it was that our theme was "Run and not grow weary" from Isaiah 40. The rest of that verse seemed to be my mantra: They that wait upon (hope in) the Lord will renew their strength. I told them that I was feeling very weak, very weary, but that it was God who would give me strength. And he did! It was an awesome time of worship and fellowship.
Afterward, a woman in the church (and a good friend of ours) came up and asked how she might pray for me. I told her that she could pray for us to have a baby, that that is what is on my heart right now. She began to tell me how they too had struggled with conceiving, and it took them eight years to get pregnant. She said she remembered being in a doctor's office just after having a laparoscopy. Before the doctor came in, she heard God tell her that she would have children, whether it was through the natural way or through adoption. Just then, the doctor came in and told her that the procedure had revealed that she was incapable of having a baby. She had to decide right then whom she would believe: the doctor or the Lord. She chose to believe the Lord. A year later, she was pregnant.
Later that day, we visited with some other friends, a couple who has just had a baby. Our friend shared that it was a complete shock and miracle that she became pregnant. She explained that she had not had a period in years, and she had been told that it was extremely unlikely that she would be able to have a baby. Her experience was very different from mine: she had already accepted in her life that she would not have children, and she and her husband were prepared for that. They were not prepared to get pregnant. Although it of course has been a blessing for them, it has nonetheless required a total dependancy on God.
It's interesting how different and yet similar our stories are. It reminds me that it is not so much about the outcome of our struggles as it is what happens within the struggles. What do we choose to believe? Do we trust the Lord, do we depend on him, or do we continue to think we know what's best for our lives?
Little by little (and I mean little), I am trusting the Lord, and I am not only believing intellectually, but believing deep in my heart that God has a purpose and a plan.