is as a Mother” and “Faith is Not a Dirty Word”
I’m going to get real now for a minute, friends. I share lots of fun and random stuff on my blog, but recently life smacked me in the face and I’m compelled to share the experience.
I am a woman of faith. It wasn’t always so, but people change. This fall, I am celebrating 10 years as a Christian…October 5th was my tenth rebirthday! But despite my decade-long walk seeking and loving Christ, I’m still not very good at it sometimes. Especially when it comes to listening.
I am also a mother. I came to Christ just before getting married, and the birth of my daughter in 2011 has an incredible testimony behind it. (I’ll share it someday!) But we only had the one child. Time and again, people would ask if/when we were going to have another, and we’d simply answer that “it’s just not in the cards.” I’d had a troubled pregnancy and was advised that doing it again might not be a great idea. I wasn’t told “don’t do it” buuuuut, it was discouraged. And while we have accepted being a little family of three, our mantra became “…but our plans are not God’s plans! If he has something else in mind then we’ll trust him!” That left us open to surprises.
It wasn’t that cut-and-dry, though. Not for me. Deep inside, I kept hoping that God would send us that surprise. My head knew it wasn’t a good idea so I took all the proper precautions, but I had a secret desire for God to override my human efforts and surprise me with a second child. If he did, I would throw myself at his feet and praise him and trust him and bless him! For years, I pined for it! But I hid the yearning and denied it. I crammed it deep down inside my soul where only God could see it.
Then I hit 40.
Hitting 40 was like hitting a brick wall, guys. BAM! Gray hair, spare tire, metabolic downshift, and my cycles went haywire! I felt like my hormones had gone AWOL. So after a year of watching my cycles go from clockwork to chaos, I finally saw my doctor. The problem is not life-threatening, but it’s only going to get worse…and surgery is my only viable option.
In just a few short days after posting this article…
I will lose my uterus.
At first I was okay with it, embracing the coming release from my recent misery. But very quickly I had to face that deep secret I’d been hiding even from myself…and it was devastating. My soul crumbled against the perpetually closed door that was now being walled over before my eyes. Even as I write this, my eyes still sting with the grief over the second child I will never bear.
But God heard me. He saw the anguish in my heart, and he pitied me. And, like any good father, he sent me encouragement. It’s so easy to miss those messages, though, isn’t it? Especially — oddly enough — if it comes from an expected source. For instance, had I gone to a pastor or brother/sister in faith, I could anticipate the kind of encouragement I would receive. It wouldn’t have been unwelcome, but it might have bounced right off me. So, God didn’t send it that way. He sent me a powerful word through someone wholly unexpected.
Now, don’t get me wrong here! Moms are CHOCK FULL of awesome advice and encouragement. I’ve never appreciated my mother more than I have in recent years!!! But my mom is not a woman of faith. (At least, if she is, she’s exceedingly quiet about it. That’s between her and God.) She does accept that I’m a Christian, and even supports it, but she doesn’t often speak into it. So when she shared a word from God…I freakin’ heard it.
I was confessing my despair to her on the way back from meeting with the surgeon. I told her all about hiding this secret desire even from myself, and how painful it was to learn that it truly wasn’t God’s plan after all. Then she said this:
“Deidre, honey, maybe this is God’s answer. He saw how desperately you were holding on to this, so he is taking it away from you to bring you peace.”
Oh, my God! Profound, divine comforter!
There he was, embracing me through my mother’s words. He’d been watching me wait so hopefully at a door he was not going to open, and locking it wasn’t enough…so he’s sealing it before me. But even as he is gently taking this away from me — “enough is enough, child” — he is holding me while I cry it out. We really are children, aren’t we? But wise is the man who prays that God confirm a sealed door, that he would not waste away before it.
So I heard ya, Big Guy. Well done. Thank you for speaking that I would hear you. And thank you, Mom, for allowing God to move through you.
Thanks for reading. And God bless.
My prayer of exaltation: My God, you are truly wondrous! You are Jehovah Roi, the God who sees me. You are Jehovah Shalom, the Lord my bringer of peace when I am troubled. You are Jehovah Rapha, the Lord who heals, who wipes my tears away! And you are Jehovah Jireh, the Lord my great provider. Thank you, Father, for seeing me, for soothing me, for being my God. Amen.