When recalling our experiences over the last few years, I often mention how evidently I have seen and experienced God’s faithfulness to us. I haven’t always been able to form the thought into a cohesive sentence, but I will try to explain through my experiences.
A couple of years ago, early on in our realization that our desire to start a family wouldn’t immediately be fulfilled, I was confused why we were okay. I’m sure this sounds strange, but it came from a time of observing others. I had seen, experienced, and read of families who’s lives were torn apart because they were unable to get pregnant. And here I was, sitting in our basement unit apartment, wondering why we were being spared some of the misery others were going through.
For a brief period of time, I thought it was because we were doing something right. We experienced a lot of good amidst the difficult. We experienced brokeneness, of course. We argued about ridiculous things, of course. But at the end of it, we were okay.
I falsely credited our stability to myself, our relationship, what I was doing, what I was eating, how much I was excercising, etc. It’s embarrassing how long it took me to realize I was experiencing God’s faithfulness to us in the midst of our pain and suffering. I can’t remember the exact moment I realized this, but I remember the feeling. I felt grateful. I was grateful that I didn’t have to sustain myself or our marriage. Even the realization itself was His patient way of reminding me to rely on Him for sustenance and proof that He is capable and faithful to supply my needs.
Several people pray for us on a continual basis and it’s amazing when I find out someone new is lifting us up in prayer. Each time someone mentions they have or are praying for us, I can only respond with gratitude because I know God is hearing them and sustaining us.
This last summer, we moved all of our belongings to Lincoln, Nebraska. Shortly after we moved, I had several signs of pregnancy and was convinced I was finally pregnant. Think of typical symptoms you hear of when a woman first finds out she is pregnant and I probably experienced it. I was elated.
If you ask any woman who has struggled to conceive for any period of time, you will undoubtedly hear stories of times they thought they were pregnant. They’ll also usually mention that although they have looked up the same list of early pregnancy symptoms dozens of times, the moment they feel a couple of them, Google searches to sites already viewed commence.
I soon found out that I was, in fact, not pregnant and my heart shattered. I cried tears with such ferocity I have never cried before. I remember sitting at our dinner table with Daniel crying until my body couldn’t produce anymore tears and I was left heaving. For a moment I would stop crying and then be overcome with emotions all over again. Daniel and I would be having a normal conversation and out of no where I would weep. I remember seeing the look of desperation in Daniel’s eyes, not knowing how to comfort me in my pain.
While in undergrad, I took a class on the Biblical Theology of 1 Samuel. It was by far my favorite class. The professor passionately taught the importance of the profound text.
As I waited in our new home, the beginning of 1 Samuel came to mind. I felt deep sadness and confusion about what was going on. Why did we move, why did I experience these symptoms, why don’t we yet have children? With the book in mind, I decided to read the beginning again.
I saw with fresh eyes how Hannah’s story is a powerful testament to God’s character. I found great peace and comfort knowing that her story is not an arbitrary addition, but is an intentional placement for the first readers and those thousands of years later.
In that moment, I rested in the fact that the God of Hannah’s story is an unchanging God, one in whom I can trust and can place my deepest desires.
I later shared with Daniel how I found great peace in Hannah’s story. I explained, to the best of my ability, how seeing the narrator’s account of Hannah’s experience left me grateful. Grateful that God not only answered her prayer, but recorded her experience as an example that He hears and answers our pleas even in the darkest of times.
I still shed tears and I will probably shed more in the time to come. But, I know this to be true:
God is unchanging and I can rest assured that He has always been faithful and will always be faithful to His people.
The circumstances may change and pain may take on a new situation, but my hope is in something far greater.
|For reflection on His faithfulness: He’s Always Been Faithful|