Barren and Blessed

These words leaped off the page at me when I read them the other day:

“Praise the Lord.  He settles the barren woman in her home as the happy mother of children” [Psalm 113:9].

How often do you hear those words spoken from a pulpit?  Never.  Read to you as part of a scripture reading?  Never.  But what an incredible message this is for infertile women!  Read it again:

“Praise the Lord.  He settles the barren woman in her home as the happy mother of children” [Psalm 113:9].

First, think about what it doesn’t say.  It doesn’t say God condemns the woman and punishes her by making her barren.  It doesn’t say, aware of her infertility, God ignores her pleas for a child; He does not care about her heartache or suffering.

It doesn’t say He intends for the woman to accept her childlessness as permanent because that is the future He has planned for her.  And, it doesn’t say, He may occasionally bless a barren woman, but He’d never do it for you.

It doesn’t say any of that.

What it does say is “He settles the barren woman….”  Not just sometimes; this is what God consistently does.  He “settles” her.  He is not a dispassionate observer of an infertile woman’s struggle, or an unresponsive witness to her deep longing.  He is present and active in her story.

In the natural, she may believe she is the one battling to stay settled in the midst of uncertainty.  Will she ever be a mother?!  But in the spiritual realm, it is God who is actively working to bring her what will settle her:  comfort, peace, hope and a future.

“He settles the barren woman in her home….”  Picture a bird making a nest, preparing to lay the eggs that will hatch at the perfect time.  God is settling the barren woman – nesting her – preparing her for the future she deeply desires.  He intends to realize her dream, and to do so  in what will be her child’s most nurturing environment:  the home.

“… as the happy mother of children.”  I love every word here!  God transforms the barren woman into a happy mother (we all know how unhappy she was when she believed children were not in her future).  Lifelong childlessness was not her dream – nor was it God’s.  His vision is for her to be a mother, and a happy one.  And not of “a child,” but “of children.”

Notice that the verse does not specify that the infertile woman will become a mother by conception.  Does that matter?  Yes, I believe it does.  God’s plan is not for every future mother to conceive.

God’s desire is that some families will be created through adoption.  Others may be created with the consenting involvement of a third party:  a surrogate, an egg donor, a sperm donor… or all three.  Some may be formed through fostering, caring for an extended family member, or a child neglected by its birth parents.

But notice:  these details, though important, will not devalue the fulfillment of the dream.  At the end of this journey, they will not reduce  the woman’s happiness, nor will they make these children any less truly hers.  In fact, these children will be uniquely and unquestionably the loves of her life — brought into it according to God’s perfect plan.

No matter how stymied we may be by our bodies’ apparent inability to conceive, God is never limited in His ability to give birth to His best for us — or for the children He intends to bring into our lives.  Never! This powerful realization is one of the greatest blessings of infertility. 

I agree with the psalmist:  Praise the Lord.

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For more inspiration and cause for hope, read Pregnant With Hope: Good News for Infertile Couples and visit PregnantWithHope.com

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2 Comments

Filed under Hope, Peace

2 responses to “Barren and Blessed

  1. Yvonne Fulsom

    I love this.. it really blessed me.. im one who is induring this. Bit now i can continue my future journey pteparing for my family

  2. Anonymous

    This was great! Never had anyone explain it this way. Very uplifting. Thank you!

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