The past two weeks have been a whirlwind for me. I feel like I’ve been slammed against a wall. It seems that the world is literally falling apart around me, and all I can do is stand by watching. Thankfully I AM standing on dry ground that the Lord has provided for me. I know He IS faithful and in complete control. Still, I feel the pain of all that these two weeks have held. Before I tell you the specifics let me give you a little back story…
Close your mind’s eye for a moment. Imagine a world that is void, filled with absolutely nothing. No light, no joy, no pain, no life, nothing. This is so hard to conceptualize for me, but please try your very best to imagine a space where nothing exists. Now then hear the thunderous voice of God say, “Let there be light.” BOOM! An explosion of light shines forth, bringing warmth to your void. Do you see the brilliance of it all as God separates the light and dark? Listen as God gives names to the light and dark, and listen as He reflects on what He’s done. “It is good,” He says.
You know the rest of this story, but let’s visualize the beauty of it all together! Can you see the sun, the moon, and the stars as God creates them? Watch as the very first land rises out of the ocean. Watch each animal as it comes to life. Do you hear at every turn when God looks over His creation and He says, “It is good.”? Can you see just how good it is?
Oh, please don’t forget that last moment when God creates the crown of it all. See the first man come into existence. Watch as he marvels at his own body made in the image of God himself. See how carefully God crafts the woman to be a perfect match for the man, and listen my friends as God looks down and says, “It is very good.”
I’ve always loved the story of creation. The very first story in all of history is so beautiful and filled with awe and wonder. I have to step back and ponder, just how big is this God of mine? Over the years one part of the story has always grabbed me. After God sets Adam and Eve in the garden, He says to them:
“Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Genesis 1:28
It’s God’s first commandment to mankind: be fruitful and multiply. As a young child the only thing I ever consistently wanted to be was a mom. In the past as I’ve read this scripture I have thought it meant that I was to bring children into this world. I thought that somehow I was fulfilling God’s purpose for my life if I brought children into the world. My identity and my purpose have been deeply rooted in the title of mom.
I have spent countless hours researching different ways to parent, best practices, and parenting traps. There have been hours reading tips and listening to experts in order to glean useful information. I have so desperately wanted to get this whole mom thing right because that would mean that I have value as a person. I could check off the box of following God’s first command.
For about 13 months now I’ve been struggling with some pretty severe female challenges. I’ve been to the doctor more than once. We tried a treatment that worked for a time, but then it stopped being effective. The past two months have been awful. Last week I knew something was wrong and I decided to go back to the doctor again.
I’d done the research over and over again, and I knew that I likely had a uterine fibroid. I also knew that the severity of my case was likely to result in the need for a surgical treatment. My research had not prepared me to hear the news. As I sat in the office last week listening to my doctor explain things to me, I began to loose my breath. Her words smacked me right in the face.
Two days later, I sat in another office listening to a specialist explain how she would need to remove my uterus, the place where my babies have grown inside of me… the place where more babies could grow. Again she was saying things I’d already researched, but her words were piercing my soul like daggers.
There are spaces in our lives that are void, formless like the earth at the beginning of creation. This past week has been one of those spaces for me. I feel lost. The thought of letting go of a part of my body that I’ve held so dearly is devastating to me. If I cannot be fruitful and multiply, how can I fulfill God’s plans for my life?
This week, as I have sunk deeper and deeper in to the abys of despair, God the creator, has spoken light into my life. My eyes are opened to the truth that there are many ways to be fruitful and multiply. I now understand that this verse has so little to do with childbirth.
God has called me to live a life that bears fruit. Not the fruit of life here on earth, but the fruit of life in eternity. I am called to live a life that multiplies, and that is something that occurs when I am willing to share my faith with others. When my life inspires someone to draw closer to Christ, then God’s glory here on earth and in heaven is multiplied.
On Monday I told you I was writing from the emergency room. While I was sick last week, my son was sick as well. He had gotten a lumbar puncture with chemo on Tuesday. By Wednesday morning he had a migraine complete with vomiting and light sensitivity. He is 8.
I desperately wanted to care for him, but I was spending my day at the doctor instead. I was battling anemia. I was helping make decisions for my grandmother’s care, and advocating for her treatment. I was praying that God would keep another one of my children safe amidst threats being made against his school by other students. I was planning a birthday party for another child whose birthday had been cancelled the week before due to illness.
When I finally arrived at the emergency room on Sunday, I felt so guilty for allowing the migraine to continue for so many days. I wished I could have gotten him help sooner.
Some moments of our life are simply heart wrenching. We are stuck between a rock and a hard place. As I sat in that room, waiting and waiting, I reflected on all that the week had entailed. I found that God had been quite busy in my life. He had been opening my eyes to the amazing support system He has created in my life. The people that God has placed around me to do this life with me, are invaluable to me. Although I was indeed stuck, the Lord had provided friends to cushion my rock and the hard place.
This past week has brought more hard news. A loved one is facing two or less years to live. I’m swallowing that information in as big of chunks as I can manage. My heart is hurting so deeply. Remember how I said things were falling apart around me?
On Monday, I encouraged us all to keep our perspectives balanced. Our past are full of joys and disappointment. Creation was amazing and full of joy, until Adam and Eve sinned. My two weeks have been filled with bad news and challenging situations, but God has been with me every step of the way. His manna is currently sustaining me.
I wish that life was filled with more rose blooms and less thorns. I wish that I could choose my battles and when I would face them. Yet somewhere tangled up in all this mess is beauty. I know God is looking down on this space I’m in, saying, “it is good.” Good that I’m learning to lean into to Him. Good that I’m having to walk intentionally by His side. Good that I am growing in my understanding of His scripture. It is good.
Please let me pray for you today, and let’s worship Christ our King and Creator together!
We love you. We trust you. You alone are the creator who can speak beauty and ignite passion into the darkest spaces of our lives. You are our king and yet you desire intimacy with us. Though we do not understand all these things, we know they are truth and we are thankful for you! God give us strength in our weak moments. Give us comfort during our despair. Father would you also open our eyes to see the glory of your work in our lives, so that we may praise you forever! Amen.