London-based fertility coach Anya Sizer read Pregnant with Hope: Good News for Infertile Couples recently and wrote this review (reprinted with permission):
“In her book, Pregnant with Hope, Susan Radulovacki has created a unique and truly inspiring read. It is one the church desperately needs as it seeks to comfort and encourage the 1 in 6 couples currently facing infertility.
It is also a wonderful book for any Christian in terms of the invaluable lessons about God that we find within its pages. As I read it, a mother of two IVF children, I found myself in tears several times realizing again something of this amazing God we serve. Of his Love for us in the big and the small areas of our life. And that surely is a lesson for all believers
The book is written with an easy style. Sections are given to case studies, as well as personal reflections on what we are learning. It is not a passive book we are to read and go away from, but rather a challenge and a journey to undertake.
The starting premise of the book is that, as people facing infertility, we are holding on tight to an illusion of control and a fear that if we really let God into the darkness, we will somehow lose this control. But…
‘Infertility shows you the limits of your faith in a way that is inescapable. You discover that letting go completely feels impossible because you don’t trust God.. at the same time, infertility reveals the limits of your own power.’
We are left, then, with a choice. And as Radulovacki says, it is a choice which takes tremendous courage. Do we carry on with the illusion? Or, do we step out in faith and let God deal with it?
Throughout the book, there are many biblical examples of men and women of faith who were tested and challenged by God. Job, for example. Here was a man whose life was tested to the limits of what he could endure. EVERY area of his life was affected. And yet, through the process (rather than overnight), he learned to shift that source of peace away from himself to a loving and faithful God.
We cannot do it on our own, nor are we meant to. God will find a way to get us through all the many highs and lows if we will let him in. So often, when we hear sermons or read books about this concept, we are left with only half of the equation. We know we need to be letting God take control, to be trusting him and not ourselves or our circumstances, but HOW?!
Pregnant with Hope has some hugely useful ways forward:
1. Actively choose to put Christ at the center of your life, to displace worry. This is ongoing and a daily decision, but one that God will more than honor.
2. Actively choose to see life and your relationship with God as holistic and all-encompassing. Move away from compartmentalizing life into areas of the secular and the spiritual.
3. Begin the process of “renewing your mind,” taking captive all the unhelpful and negative thoughts that can so easily take over, and replace them with God’s truth. This was so incredibly helpful, it resulted in me having a bit of a cry on a bus into work one day!
4. Remember that “I can do all things (injections, scans, the highs and lows of treatment, etc) through Christ who gives me strength.”
5. See these months as Wilderness months. Reframe this as a journey through something. The Wilderness teaches us many things, not least of which is perseverance, compassion for others, and the ability to rely on God for our daily bread.
I also found Radulovacki’s concept of “active waiting“ to be very helpful. As Christians, we do not live for the future only, but rather, we work with God in our present circumstances – whatever they may be.
The journey of infertility will test a person and their faith in God more than they could ever think. And yet, God’s faithfulness is always so much more than we could imagine. It will be sufficient. My own six-year struggle is testimony to this, and my children were worth every step of the battle.
Infertility is not wasted time.
“Are you willing to trust that if it’s a different story [than you planned], God’s plan will be better?”
This book most certainly reassures us that, with God’s help, we can walk through this season with him to lead, guide and strengthen us. What good news.
This is a wonderful and much-needed book.”
For more inspiration, resources and cause for hope, click this link….