For nothing will be impossible with God. Luke 1:37
I was twenty-eight years old, and the biblical women with whom I could relate the most were Sarah, Rachel, Hannah and Elizabeth. Why? They were barren and could not conceive a child. I wanted a baby desperately, yet after much testing my doctors could find no reason why I couldn’t become pregnant. Full of sorrow over what might never be, I could no longer attend baby showers or watch new moms with their sweet babies without my heart breaking.
At the time, while working as a private duty RN, an assignment was given to care for a young woman who had just given birth. Along with the task came the warning that she was going to be very hard to handle; a poor little rich girl, spoiled rotten, separated from her husband and living with her mother, who was pretty loony in her own right. Not only did the patient not want her child but she refused to even see her; on top of that, she was driving the entire staff crazy with her complaints. Long story short, she lived up to all the hype and wins the prize for the most difficult patient I ever had throughout my nursing career. Day 1 was beyond awful, dealing with her hysterics as she refused the very treatments that would have helped her feel better; but day 2 was just as bad, or even worse. The dad came to visit and they decided to go see their child, escorted by yours truly. That baby girl was one of the prettiest little darlings I’d ever seen, and she stole their hearts (and mine!); after which they decided Mom would take her home where they would live with the the sex-crazed, drugged-out grandmother in her multi-million dollar Beverly Hills mansion. That broke my heart almost as much as the mom not wanting the baby because I knew there was little chance she would grow up to be a happy, well-adjusted adult; let alone the fact that short of a major miracle, there would be no godly influence in her life. I wonder to this day how her life turned out and if she has ever come to know Jesus.
After all of this, while walking to my car after work I could’nt keep the tears from flowing. Literally railing at God over the injustice of it all, I argued with Him all the way home; asking over and over, “Why God, why?” I felt convicted that I should read my Bible as soon as I arrived, but was so angry with Him that scriptures and prayer were the last thing I was interested in. All I wanted to do was yell and scream and pretty-much throw a fit! Finally, I gave in and told Him, “OK, I’ll only read the daily devotional, but that’s it unless You give me some answers.”
Backtracking a little, this was before the days of easy search engines where you can type in a few words of a Bible quote and immediately locate the chapter and verse. I had been searching for weeks for a particular scripture but couldn’t find it even though I’d checked printed commentaries and indexes, all to no avail; it seemed like those verses had disappeared from my Bible. Now, I entered my home and, with a rebellious, I’ll-show-You God attitude, picked up my devotional booklet. Wouldn’t you know it? The very passage I’d been searching for was the verse of the day:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
Broken, I collapsed on the floor in tears; repenting for my fears, impatience, lack of trust and everything else I could think of. By the time I got up He had made all things new, the angst was gone. Shortly afterward, a friend from church was about to give birth and I hosted her baby shower. I remember so clearly sitting there in complete peace; but there was also a quiet sense that I was pregnant, though it was much too early to even suspect it. Sure enough, I was; and about nine months later our son was born. I still identified with those biblical women, but this time it was because I understood how each one felt when they gave birth – Sarah, the mother of Isaac; Rachel, the mother of Joseph; Hannah, the mother of Samuel; and Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist:
He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children. Praise the Lord! Psalm 113:9
Why me? Why did I have to go through that? Certainly, I don’t have all of the answers; but I do know that the experience has enabled me to comfort other women over the years. I also understand that why-questions are not limited to infertitily and that whatever the issue, God is always faithful to His own. He’s proven it to me time and time again; through life-threatening illnesses, financial difficulties and family difficulties, just to name a few, He has proven His sufficiency:
Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:8-9
Clearly, we don’t have all the answers and often cannot understand, but the truth remains:
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9
Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:30-31
But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me. Psalm 13:5-6
For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in. Psalm 27:10
You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
The saying is trustworthy, for: If we have died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he also will deny us; if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself. Timothy 2:11-13
Life is full of hardship! Seemingly, about the time we overcome one thing, somthing else comes along. My prayer is that each person reading this post will embrace the reality of His sufficency and experience His perfect peace in the midst of the storms. Whatever the problem, He cares and He will help!
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