"Head up, shoulders back, thoughts positive, heart set on the promises of God." Only to be followed up by, "He is the God who keeps every promise" the very next day.
His timing couldn't have been more perfect.
Last month, I saw the most beautiful rainbow I have ever seen. This picture doesn't do it justice. I have never seen a rainbow where I could see both the ends of it, and have never seen a double rainbow. I saw this rainbow on October 14th- I remember because it was the day before our National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Day Walk. I was a mix of emotions- excited about our walk, sad about remembering Bristol, anxious to get through that day, and feeling defeated with another month of unsuccessful fertility treatment. I walked out of CVS and saw the most beautiful rainbow...it took my breath away and I couldn't take pictures quick enough to capture this awesome sight. And then tears started to flow. Here I was having a pity party for myself, and God blesses me the most beautiful example of His love and never ending promises for us!
"Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you."
1 Peter 5:6-7
Seeing this rainbow put me in my place- it got my focus rearranged, humbled me, reminded me of His awesome power & glory, and reminded me that our trials here on earth are for one purpose...to serve a greater glory for His kingdom. This sure is a hard lesson for me, and one I continue to battle with...I know it's selfish of me to not want to have struggles and trials, especially the ones I continue to face, but then again, who does? I feel like I am constantly reminding myself that what I face, is just part of my journey, and if I can share with others about God's love, faithfulness, and mercy, then that is what it's all about...NOT ME. (As I write that, I hear my Beth Moore bible study ranting on about our current day Babylon and our self centered culture.)
Here is a picture of my precious Bristol, I've never really shared photos of her before...
Last week after hearing the Dugger Family news of welcoming a 20th baby to their family, I got out my memory box of Bristol. I was really upset (maybe hateful and jealous would be a better description) when I heard the news that they were pregnant, again! She must sneeze and get pregnant, and here I am jabbing my stomach with a needle 14 out of 28 days...have been through 3 pregnancies and have only to got to keep one here on earth....there I go again, my ugly selfish-pity party head raring...
On top of hearing this news, I have really struggled with some of the cases I am assigned to at work...long story short, I am surrounded by situations in which parents don't put their kids as a priority. I know several families who would love to have kids, and struggle to get or maintain a pregnancy. And yet, for others it seems so simple and at times an inconvenience. Heartbreaking to say the least.
Then it dawned on me this morning- the Duggers have constantly given praise to God for their children and the blessing of each additional pregnancy. Part of their journey (regardless of media attention, money, etc) is giving praise back to our creator, and maybe touching lives in unknown ways that will further His kingdom. Who am I to judge or say what their motives are? God knows, and in the end, that's all that matters.
This forces me to face the reality that perhaps fertility struggles are part of my journey. As much as I hate enduring this battle and feeling broken, it forces me to rely on faith, encourages a relationship through prayer, and allows an opportunity for a unique ministry. The loss of Bristol has allowed me to share my faith story with others, created new friendships with other women, and given me an opportunity to share about God's love and faithfulness. As Beats for Bristol continues to grow and gain recognition with other women, families, and organizations, I pray that God will use it to reach those who are hurting. It is in those most desperate times of need and hurt, that only a Savior can heal our hearts and change our lives.
"The righteous cry, and the LORD hears and delivers them out of all their troubles." Psalms 34:17
"He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds." Psalms 147:3
Perhaps this current fertility struggle, gives me a new platform to share my personal struggle in banishing Satan's stronghold on my thoughts/fears/anxieties. Fertility can shake a person to the core, cause tension in marriages, and create jealousy between friends. But trusting in God's plan, and relying on His promises for us
can get us through those hardest moments. So as I begin another month of shots, I will try to maintain His promise as my focus. Thank goodness our Lord is a loving and forgiving Father...I know this will be a tough battle for me, but I also know that He loves me enough to never let go.
"Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand."
Isaiah 41:10"Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary."