Yesterday, my friend Stefan told me that someone close to him is struggling through infertility. Frustrated, he said, “I told her to get in the infertility group at church, but she won’t do it.”
Knowing nothing about this woman, I said, “Let me guess. She’s a Type A personality. Very successful at work. She’s married to an I-Can-Do-It kind of guy. He hates to ask for help – takes pride in being self-reliant. He’s a Fixer. They’re keeping their struggle quiet because they’re going to push through it privately. They’re just hoping it’ll be behind them soon.”
He almost fell over. “You’ve described them perfectly!” he said, sounding totally amazed.
How did I know? I didn’t… but it was a safe guess. Over time, I’ve noticed a pattern working with infertile couples: very often, they’re people who are used to success.
It’s the same story with every couple I meet through the infertility Bible study, and with people who contact me about blogposts or chapters in my book. They’re used to succeeding. They’re used to solving problems. They’re used to getting things done – on time, and on budget. When something is hard, they push harder. Whatever it takes, they accomplish the objective.
Crazy as it sounds, this is the common denominator in every infertility story I know. I think it is the infertility story: life was unfolding according to plan – then suddenly, we hit the wall. What’s happening?!
I believe God is using infertility to create a teachable moment.
Think about it. We want a baby and are motivated to do whatever it takes to make that happen. He wants to teach us hugely important lessons that require a humble willingness to learn. Those aren’t traits He consistently sees in us. So, cue the infertility.
We try and try to conceive… remain childless… push harder and harder… become increasingly desperate… struggle for peace, hope and sanity… realize we can’t “fix” this… beg God for help… don’t get what we want (on our terms, or our timetable)…feel grief, anger, fear, despair…pass through many more cycles, struggling with the same issues… and finally become ready to end this painful process and completely relinquish control.
I’m convinced that the moment of humbly acknowledging “I can’t do this, God, only You can” is the critical first step toward learning the lesson(s) of this teachable moment. “I choose to trust You and accept Your will for us, whatever that may be.” When we can embrace the knowledge that those are not words of defeat – they are simply words of submission – we’re headed for victory. The worst of the battle is behind us.
Are you ready for your infertility journey to come to an end? Ask yourself if you are ready to accept whatever God gives you, whatever plan He has in mind for your future. His best. If you are ready to say “yes” unconditionally, you are ready to clear your only real hurdle.
Trust me, God will clear the rest.
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