Saturday, October 08, 2016
That's a common line at my home. The boys are expecting one thing, but something unexpected happens, and they are caught in disbelief.
And we are the same.
We have high expectations, goals, plans, dreams. And things don't turn out the way we thought.
When remodeling our first home, we packed up everything, put it all into storage and moved in with my in-laws. We got into our home 4 days before going into labor with my first son. Wait. What?
I dreamed of having 3 children: 2 boys and a girl. Wait. What? I have three boys and my fourth baby was lost through miscarriage.
After ten years of marriage, my husband decided to join the military. Wait. What?
Teaching is all I've ever intended on doing. Recently, though, writing has become more important in my life, something I feel God leading me toward. Wait. What?
After house looking for two years and being very particular about what we were looking for, we bought a house on a whim because it was too good to pass up. Wait. What?
When I checked the scales after weeks of intense exercise, the numbers had not changed. Wait. What?
Life is full of those moments. Just ask any one. Especially Job.
Job had it all. Everything was great. Family. Friends. Prosperity. But then.....he lost everything.
I have to believe that Job said that just like we do. However, what he said next, many of us don't say: "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord." ~ Job 1:21.
Job blessed the name of the Lord after he'd lost everything? Was he crazy?
No. He just knew God.
When our "Wait. What?" moments turn out pretty awesome - like the purchase of our home - it is easy to praise the name of the Lord. But what about those moments of heart break, of bad news, of uncertainty, those moments when, like Job, everything is turned upside down.
We must praise Him then too.
Before I move on, let me just say, I do not know why bad things happen. I do know this: there is sin in the world and we make choices. I also know that God uses everything for His glory. Any experience I speak of is mine and how God has used it.
With that being said......
No doubt we were a bit surprised by our fourth pregnancy. It happened quite quickly upon my husband's return from deployment. However, we were excited and nervous, and in awe of this new journey. I even had this nervousness about whether or not this baby would be a girl. After all, I wasn't quite sure what it would be like raising a daughter after being a boymom for so long. Not long after we began spreading the news of our newest blessing, we discovered that something was seriously wrong. After an agonizing wait, we found out that our little one had stopped growing. I lost my baby through a natural miscarriage. Aside from watching my husband leave for war, this was the worst thing I've ever had to experience.
Being a mom is a blessing to me. I'm not a perfect mom, but I love being a mom. During this time, I questioned myself. Had a done something to cause this? Had I jinxed myself by telling before the first trimester was over? What did I do that caused the loss of this baby?
I had a choice to make, I could be bitter and angry over this devastation or I could lean on God and praise Him.
I chose God.
God gave me that baby. I'm not going to question why I wasn't allowed to keep that child. It isn't my place. I am going to choose to do something with that experience. So, I write here. I share with others. And I'm amazed at how the healing has come to me and others. We will never be completely healed on this side of heaven, but we can grow from here. We can be there for others. And through this experience, I've grown closer to God. I've been strengthened by him.
God didn't change during this time.
He didn't change while my husband served overseas.
He didn't change while we waited on whether our not my husband would be called to pastor a church.
He didn't change when I felt like a loser mom after yelling at my kids for the umpteenth time.
He didn't change when my bank account was far less than what makes me comfortable.
He didn't change when my middle son stayed sick for so long.
He didn't change when.......and He won't.
I have seen friends and family be refined by the fire because they fell to their knees in prayer. I've seen friends and family grow in their walk with Christ because they chose hope instead of defeat. I've seen lives changed because others used their weaknesses, their paths of uncertainty, and their sinfulness to trust God.
I've seen miracles because of those who have chosen not to be defined by their circumstances, but have chosen to bless the name of the Lord during their "Wait. What?" moments.
Today, I ask you to take inventory of your circumstances. What are you struggling with? Then wholeheartedly, lay it at the foot of the cross and bless the name of the Lord. Friend, we were created for an awesome relationship with Christ. Let go of whatever is holding you back from experiencing peace and joy.
You are not defined by your bank account.
You are not defined by your appearance.
You are not defined by cancer.
You are not defined by your sin.
You are a child of God and that is what defines you.