Monday, 13 October 2014

A Lesson in Obedience and Grace (part 3)

This is the final piece of the pregnancy puzzle. Please read part 1 and part 2 if you've not yet done so (it'll make loads more sense that way).

"Over the following months I wrote letters to family members, to other young couples, to Andel, and even to my boss. In retrospect it is so clear that this lesson was one I was meant to learn during this time, and I could not have moved on literally and figurative until I had, and so when I moved on, I left with peace.

I received two more words in quick succession one day. The one was from a family friend (a passage in Numbers) and the other was from my colleague (a passage in Isaiah) both of which spoke of coming favour, of trusting God to fulfill His promises, and to be expectant of a blessing. I really thought I was on my way, that I had done all that was asked of me, and that things would be falling into place. But as these things sometimes happen: just when one area of life seems to be coming right, another is seemingly falling apart, and deep down I just knew we would have to wait longer because God commands a blessing where there is unity, and at that time we didn't have a consistent amount of that.

As we entered the month of August I was beginning to get antsy. Then one day I got this verse from a family friend: "Until now you have not asked for anything in My name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete" John 16:24. I also happened to find, at that time, a blog record of another Christian couple's battle with infertility. It's probably important to note here that, at the start of this year I was obsessed with falling pregnant. I had an information supply on pregnancy and fertility that could rival Google, and I would get into an absolute tizz every time I got a negative pregnancy test or a visit from Aunty Flo. As I read this other couple's account, I realised our journey was very different: for one, we already had Zac which meant we didn't (seem to) suffer the same desperation that childless couples experienced. I also realised that in some ways, I was not so much sad as I was hopeful: isn't it funny how sometimes just when you stop looking for something you find it? After getting to a place of acceptance - about having (or not) more children, and about my life in general - when God gave me the promise of another child, I just didn't consider that He would not make good on it eventually. I wondered at times if I was being too casual about the whole thing. Sometimes there's such a fine line between trusting God like a daddy, and taking His work in your life for granted...

Then, amazingly, a few days later I listened to a sermon on Psalm 119:49 "Remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope" in which it was emphasised that (a) we are to remind God of his promises in boldness, and (b) we are to pray urgently, in faith. Was this for me again? I initially felt like I was 'within my rights" to apply this to my situation. Then I reminded myself that it had nothing to do with rights. Quite simply, God had promised me, and His grace gave me the freedom to both approach him in boldness, and expect some action from Him, in faith.

On the 7th August we found out we are pregnant! Soli Deo Gloria!"

Looking back, there were so many physical (and some less so) signs. There were things that, quite eerily, happened almost identically to when I found out I was pregnant with Zac - and I don't think it was that I didn't see them, I think I was just being cautious. As much as this story paints a picture of big faith, there was most certainly a fair amount of doubt too. And yet, I distinctly remember feeling like God and I had this amazing secret. When I plucked up enough courage to take the test, those two purple lines brought forth a wave of so many emotions. Even after a blood test confirmed it, it still felt surreal, and for the next 6 weeks or so I found myself a little hesitant to accept it, and often paranoid about all the things that may be going wrong (we don't ever learn, do we?).

But here we sit now - 15 weeks in - and I'm beginning to get it:
Every baby is God's baby. As much as we have a great or not so great pregnancy; if we find ourselves strictly following the 'rules' or not; whether we deliver naturally or by c-section; when we breastfeed or don't - it has absolutely nothing to do with us! God's grace creates and sustains our children! And while we do have the immense responsibility of caring for and rearing our babies (both in utero and out), it's that same grace that equips, strengthens and guides us to do so. Each child has a divine purpose and story.

This is the beginning of ours...

1 comment:

  1. Our dear Rob, Anno and Zac-i,
    We have been invigorated by your testimony! Thank you for sharing this with us. What an exciting season...