Tag Archives: God’s purpose

Despite Infertility, You Can Exhale….

“If we are faithless, He will remain faithful, for He cannot disown Himself.”

If we have anything to be grateful for in the midst of infertility, it is this:  even if we are faithless, God will remain faithful.  He cannot be otherwise.  We can reject His faithfulness.  We can deny it.  We can insist it is not real because we are not getting what we want when we want it.  But, that does not change the nature of God.

He can only be who and what He is.  Faithful.  Always.

And so, we can exhale.

We don’t have to understand this suffering.  We don’t have to feign gratitude when what we feel most are hurt and anger.  We don’t have to earn God’s favor or the blessing we desperately desire.

In fact, we can’t.

All we can do is wrap our arms around the gift of grace and whisper, “Thank you.”  We are loved despite our imperfections.  We are going to be blessed, despite our many failures.  We are pregnant with hope, and God intends to grow that seed into the reality of a family — in His perfect timing.

Even if we are faithless – which we so often are when tests come back negative, numbers are discouraging, bleeding starts and hope is dying – even then, God is faithful.  He walks with us to comfort, strengthen and guide.  He sends encouragers to speak His truth into our hearts.  And He continues to nurture the seed of hope that He planted in our hearts for a reason.

So, whatever you do, or don’t, believe…. believe this:  He will remain faithful, for He cannot be otherwise.

Thank God.


For more inspiration and cause for hope, please click this link…!

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Getting Up from Rock Bottom

I frequently receive emails from people wanting to know if there’s a PregnantWithHope support group in their area.  If there’s not, I always encourage them to consider starting one.  That’s how it works: someone musters enough courage and determination to risk outing themself as infertile, and then they find support by asking, “Is anyone else struggling?”

It’s easy to say…, but I know it can feel like too much to tackle if you’re already completely overwhelmed (and emotionally undone) by the infertility journey.

So, here’s an alternative.

Kelli emailed me about finding PregnantWithHope.com, and then creating her support group of one.  “I found your site when I was at rock bottom with infertility.  At that point, all I needed was some hope and your site brought that.  I worked through your book this summer with another girlfriend that is struggling and we both found so much comfort from it.  I truly felt God working in my life and helping me with my pain.”

Just one other person was all it took to create a sense of supportive community.  Here’s why:

“Where two or more have gathered in my name, I am there in their midst” [Matthew 18:20].

When we honor God by seeking Him – His help, His peace, His strength, His wisdom – He responds.  The Bible promises, “Come near to God and He will come near to you.”  God kept this promise to Kelli and her friend in their tiny little support group.

As they worked through Pregnant With Hope, they were able to see their journey from a different perspective – one that immersed them in messages of hope and peace.  The book reminded them of the promises of a faithful God – promises specifically relevant to the infertility journey.  It guided their conversations by giving them questions to discuss.  And, it enabled them to “hear” and be encouraged by the stories of other couples who made the same journey and then become parents.

Now pregnant with twins, Kelli says, “I know God answers prayers and He showed me that again.”

If you live in an area that doesn’t have a PregnantWithHope support group, don’t give up.  Instead, find one person to share your struggle with:  your partner, another person going through infertility, a compassionate friend, a loving family member, a Stephen Minister (from your church or someone else’s)….  Simply by sharing your story and inviting God to enter more fully into it, you will begin to find the help and hope you need.

Then one day, like Kelli, you’ll be emailing me to say, “Susan, I’ve got great news to share!”


For more inspiration, resources and cause for hope, click this link

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A Job-like Season

I have some friends who are struggling through a Job-like season right now – a time when everything seems to be coming against them and they can barely keep their heads above water.  Constant change.  Constant uncertainty.  Constant stress.  Exhausted and destabilized, they are struggling mightily to hang on to anything resembling hope.  And in the midst of all the chaos, trying to conceive.

Where is God in all this?

The Bible says He is “our refuge,” “our strength,” and “an ever-present help,” but He doesn’t feel ever-present to them.  Never-present is more like it.  They can’t seem to find any refuge, and they are running very low on strength.  So, now what do they do?

God Calling, the devotional book I discovered on vacation, has the answer:

“To see Me, you must bring Me your cares and show Me your heart of Trust.  Then, as you leave your cares, you become conscious of My Presence.”

If they want to find the refuge, the strength and the help God offers, these are the steps to take:

1)      “…bring Me your cares…” – Vent honestly; Job did.  Take every hurt and heartache to the One who is always ready to listen, who never resents your need or refuses you compassion.  He is waiting for you – hoping you will choose Him over whatever comfort you might seek (and fail to find) in the world.

2)      “…and show Me your heart of trust” – Don’t dump your problems and run; stay long enough to show God your desire to trust Him, despite your circumstances.   Let Him see in your heart a longing to look past this moment’s struggles, and a choice to believe in what you know about His character, His faithfulness and His love.

3)      “Then, as you leave your cares, become conscious of My Presence” – Hand Him your burdens.  Release your grip and let them go.  Give them to Him as a trust-based offering.  As you do, you will find yourself able to turn your focus away from them and toward His presence.  That shift of focus may not last long at first, but keep repeating these 3 steps.  You will become increasingly aware of His ever-presence.  And in that realization, you will find the comfort and hope you cannot find anywhere else.

When I went through a Job-like season, I got so desperate I was willing to try anything.  Virtually everyone and everything I’d assumed would comfort me failed to, sooner or later.   Only God never failed.  That realization — tested and proven in trial by fire — was the great blessing of the season.

My friends are in the process of receiving the same blessing.  Although they can’t see it, I truly believe it.  Suffering is a door none of us would ever choose to open.  But sometimes, it leads us straight to the heart of God.


Want more inspiration and cause for hope?  Visit PregnantWithHope.com

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Do You Trust God Enough to Rest?

This summer, I needed rest desperately.  Exhausted by two years spent writing, editing, publishing, teaching and (constantly) blogging for Pregnant with Hope, I needed time to slow down, rest, and fill the well.

As I contemplated a season of true rest, a part of me worried, “What’ll happen if I stop?  Will people stop reading the blog and disappear?  Will book sales bottom out?  Support groups die off?  Site traffic slow to a trickle?  If so, will all my effort have been wasted?”

With the benefit of rest-induced hindsight, I can see how I-centric that thinking was.  But at the time, I was so caught up in hurry-hurry-hurry-push-push-push that I didn’t realize my initial obedience had morped into something more like obsession.

Does anything about that ring a bell?

If so, it might help you to hear what slowed me down and let me rest:  a devotional book I discovered on vacation titled, God Calling.  First published in 1932, this unusual little book is a series of conversational revelations – messages of hope and love given to two struggling women during a season of worry and fear by Christ himself.

The first time I picked up the book, I read, 

“Rest is trust.  Without the knowledge that I am working for you, you cannot rest.”

As I let those words sink deep into my spirit, I felt myself exhale for the first time since launching Pregnant with Hope.  I began thinking….  Trust is an either/or.  I can’t “sort of” trust people; ultimately, I trust them or I don’t.  It’s the same with God.

Can I trust God?  I believe so, yes.  But, do I? Sometimes, without realizing it, my actions reveal to me that I’ve lost sight of God as I’ve shifted my focus to my goal.  To rest in the knowledge that He is at work — in me, through me, for me — is to restore Him to His rightful place as the center of my focus.

Either I trust Him to breathe life into this ministry, to guide my steps, to take my offering and do something amazing with it — or I don’t.  It’s not a feeling; it’s a choice.

Having remembered all that, I recommitted to choosing trust.  To putting God at the center of this story.  Right there in the middle of a Florida bookstore.  And for the first time in ages, I began to rest.

It’s the same thing in a season of infertility.  Either we trust God’s timing, His goodness and His purposefulness – or we don’t.  If we do, we can rest.  We can let go without fear of losing ground, or missing the perfect moment.  If we don’t, ceaseless activity and constant worry will be the clear evidence that we’re trying to do this all ourselves.

Are you incredibly tired?  Desperately in need of rest?  Do you wish you could trust God enough to let go?  If the answer is yes, don’t be afraid to take a breather.  He won’t stop working for you – and trust me, you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel.


For more help and reasons for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com


Filed under Control, Trust, Uncategorized

Mother Teresa & Infertility

This is the last of the “summer reruns.”  That means all new insights and words of hope beginning Wednesday.  But first, here is the most popular post I’ve ever written, based on the volume & content of emails received in response….


Not long ago, I discovered a book by Mother Teresa, You Are Blessed.  I walked past it as I was leaving a bookstore, and God could not have spoken to me more clearly if the book had leaped off the table and into my hands.

I am blessed, but sometimes – especially when I’m not getting what I’m badly wanting and desperately praying for – I forget that.  I lose sight of my glass half-full.  All I can see is that it’s partly empty.  As I look around me, “everyone else” is already enjoying the blessing I want.  That’s when the negative self-talk starts:  it’s so unfair, why them and not me?  A minute later, I’m caught in a psychological death spiral… down, down, down… into a dark hole of worry and gloom, until I feel so far from God that I can’t possibly hear Him.

Does that sound familiar?

Maybe it doesn’t happen so fast for you.  Or, maybe it’s such a blur, you can’t even describe the stages of descent – just the fact that one minute you’re fine, the next minute you’re losing it.

It’s those death spiral moments that make infertile couples ask, “Where is God in all this?”  He can seem so distant, unresponsive, and unmoved by our trauma and drama.  But, He’s not. We’ve pulled away – out of fear, a need to control, repressed anger, and so much more.  Meanwhile, God is busy blessing us.

How can we see that more clearly?  What would that change?  And why is it hugely important to our infertility experience?

When we focus on what we do not have – and those who already have it, we open the door to resentment and jealousy.  We foolishly invite darkness into our hearts, our minds, and our spirits.  We unconsciously push God aside to make room for His enemy, and then give ourselves over to despair.  We choose a path that cannot possibly take us to joy.

Unbelievably, this is our choice.  It is our decision to marinate in toxic emotions that make it virtually impossible to hear or see  God.  But, it doesn’t have to be that way.

If we shift the focus from self to God – from “I want but don’t have…” to “He’s already given me…” – we find cause for renewed hope.  Even more, we experience a restored confidence in His faithfulness and compassion.  It is choosing to see the glass half-full (thanks to God), rather than half-empty.  And it makes all the difference in how we experience the infertility journey.

So, when you want a child and can’t conceive one, can’t carry one to term, can’t imagine another cycle but can’t imagine giving up… how exactly is the glass half-full?

If you have a loving, supportive spouse, you are blessed.  If you have found a doctor you trust and respect, you are blessed.  If someone outside your marriage is encouraging you, you are blessed.  If you’ve ever gotten a good test result, you are blessed.  If you’re healthy enough to try again, you are blessed.  If you can afford ART, you are blessed.

If you’ve found a community of infertile couples, you are blessed.  If you’ve read an uplifting message, you are blessed.  If you have a friend who understands your struggle, you are blessed.  If you continue to hope despite losses and grief, you are blessed.  If you still believe that God hears your prayers — even if you don’t sense His answers — you are blessed.

You are blessed.  You are blessed.  You are blessed.

And all of it – every bit of it! – was put in your path by the God who loves you and longs to bless you more.  He intends to give you His very best, in His perfect timing.  It’s hard to be patient – especially when you don’t know the details of His plan – but you can trust the God who’s proven Himself faithful throughout scripture.

Mother Teresa’s book reminded me today that I am blessed.  I took several minutes, right in the middle of the bookstore, to think of the ways God has gone before me to prepare a path strewn with blessings – too many to count.  Recalling those blessings was a blessing in itself.  I felt a surge of gratitude for the God who knows and loves me.

Do you have a thankful heart for all that God has already done for you?  Tell Him so.  Thank Him.  And, trust that He is not ignoring your pleas for the blessing of a child.

Mark 11:24 says, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

What greater blessing could there be than this promise?  Claim it, choose to see that the foundation is already being laid, and give God your “thank offering” of a grateful heart.  The change in your perspective will alter your trajectory.


For more resources and cause for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com

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One Man’s Very Personal Infertility Story

What if one of the blessings of infertility is that it exposes our infertile faith – and motivates us to draw near and rely on the God we’ve been taking for granted.  Would it be worth the heartache?

Joe thinks so.

When he and his wife joined our infertility bible study, they’d already faced cervical cancer, several failed IUIs, failed IVFs, surgeries (for both of them), and a miscarriage that occurred shortly after they shared news of their pregnancy with a dying parent.

How did they deal with it all?  Prior to these challenges, said Joe, “I was a passive Christian.  I didn’t read the Bible.  We were going to church, but for me, it was at a very superficial level.  I’d go, leave, and put it behind me until the next Sunday.”

Recently, USA Today featured the results of a major survey of young adults.  Among those who consider themselves Christians, 65% said they rarely/never pray with others, read the Bible, or worship.  The article summarized, “They’re mushy, in-name-only Christians.”

Joe embodied the trend of spiritual sleepwalking – mushy, in-name-only faith that’s nothing like a genuine relationship with God.  It’s pointless and largely useless.  But, that didn’t matter to Joe until infertility — and all the challenges that came with it — entered the story.  

“I had this experience that I’d never had before,” he recalled.  “I was in the shower upstairs and I lost it.  I was crying.  I literally could feel God, hear God, and He said, “You have to be strong.”  That’s when I realized I needed God on a more-than-superficial level.”  Soon afterwards, Joe and Nancy joined our infertility Bible study.

When couples seek out our group, they’ve often reached their limit.  Whether that limit is psychological, emotional, physical, spiritual, or some combination of these – their circumstances have become unbearable.  They’ve made as much progress as they can under their own power.  Now, humbled by their lack of success and painfully aware of their human limitations, they realize it’s time to try something new.

What can I possibly offer them?

This promise:  God uses our circumstances as a “spiritual refining process” to prepare us.  Rather than ignoring or punishing us, God  is allowing our experiences to mold us in anticipation of the blessing He has planned.  The gift that is coming.  The child we long for.

It’s human nature to feel desperate when we reach our limits.  But when we stop relying on our own ability to bring our dream to fruition, we open the door to a new kind of hope, based on God’s promise and His faithfulness.  The same promise-keeping God of scripture continues to work today in the lives of couples who invite Him into their story.

I’ve watched Him work miracle after miracle in the lives of couples who’ve joined our group and chosen to proceed in God-honoring ways.  They replaced spiritual sleepwalking with conscious, intentional trust and faith-full decisions.  Did it change anything?  Yes.  It changed everything.

Was it worth the effort?

When I interviewed Joe, now the father of a two-year-old son, for Pregnant with Hope, he summarized his experience this way:  “At the end of it, if all that happens is that you become closer to God, it’s worth it.”


Find more resources and cause for hope at PregnantWithHope.com

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Choosing Thoughts that Inspire Hope

This is the last week of “summer reruns.”  This week’s posts are some of the most popular ones I’ve written, based on comments & emailed responses.  I hope you find them helpful and inspiring.


My husband runs with an IPod Shuffle.  It plays whatever he loads, randomly.  So, he can’t control which song plays — but it’s always something he’s chosen for his personal collection.

It’s a lot like the way we play the same words over and over in our minds as we struggle through infertility.  We choose the playlist, but then go through life thinking we have no control over what we’re hearing.

When test results come back and they’re nothing like what we wanted, it’s as if someone pushes Play and one of our sad songs begins:  “Why Is It Always Someone Else Who’s Happy?” or “Every Time I Turn Around, More Bad News,” or “Feeling So Alone and So Heartbroken.”  It’s deeply discouraging.  And, it’s easy to tell ourselves we have no choice but to listen.

That’s a lie.

You know who told us that lie?  It wasn’t the voice of Truth.  All through scripture, God tells us not to be afraid, not to worry, not to doubt.  Over and over, He tells us, “Trust me.  I have a plan and a purpose.”  Jesus reaffirms these promises throughout the New Testament.  So, why isn’t that the voice we hear?  Because we’re busy listening to something else.

“Fear is the false expectation appearing real.”

I saw those words on a sign outside a tiny church not far from my home.  I got thinking… “The false expectation” is the thought that this infertility journey will have a negative outcome.  That when we reach the end of this, it will have been for nothing and there will be no baby.  When that thought appears real — when it’s another failed cycle and another round of heartache — fear feels overwhelming.

When we give in to that fear, we open the door to a cascade of negative thoughts that flood our minds with despair and doubt — leaving little room for God’s truth.  It’s a terrible choice.  It’s one most of us make unconsciously, as if we can’t control the thoughts we think, or the words our minds speak to our hearts.

But we can.

Here’s what we need to do: take these negative thoughts captive, and replace them with hope.  How?  By rejecting the false expectation that our stories will end tragically, and instead, building our hope on a foundation of faith.

How do we do that?  By claiming the promises of scripture as our own.  After all, they are God’s promises to us.  As Joel Osteen’s congregation says every week, “This is my Bible.  I am what it says I am.  I have what it says I have.  I can do what it says I can do.”  By loading these promises onto our mental Shuffle and pushing Play whenever we need to hear the words of our faithful, promise-keeping God, we affirm their truth and power in our lives.

What are the promises of scripture that speak most meaningfully to infertile couples?  Here are my nominees for “Greatest Hits” and I recommend you add every one of them to your playlist:

1.  “I have not given you a spirit of fear” [II Timothy 1:7]

2.  “Cast all your cares on me, because I care for you” [I Peter 5:7]

3.  “Count on me to give you wisdom through Christ” [I Corinthians 1:30]

4.  “What is impossible with men is possible with God” [Luke 18:27]

5.  “I will direct your steps” [Proverbs 3:5,6]

6.  “I will give you rest” [Matthew 11:28]

7.  “I will never abandon you” [Hebrews 13:5]

8.  “I will meet all your needs” [Philippians 4:19]

9.  “All things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose” [Romans 8:28]

10.  “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” [Mark 11:24]

When the moment looks hopeless and you’re tempted to call up a collection of self-absorbed, self-pitying songs, choose these verses instead.  Keep them in your mind and heart.  Put them on your fridge, your dashboard, your bedside table and your screen saver.  Ask God to breathe power into them, to infuse you with hope when you speak them aloud, and to fill you with peace when you remember them silently.

Fill your thoughts with the words of the only One who can do anything; it will change everything.


Got a favorite verse?  Share it with other infertile couples by leaving a comment.


Find more resources and cause for hope at PregnantWithHope.com

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Who Wants to be a Surrogate?

What kind of woman says “giving up a baby was the most thrilling moment of my life”?  Ask Pam MacPhee.

Nine years ago, doctors diagnosed her cousin Henry’s wife with aggressive cervical cancer.  Treatment was likely to cause infertility, so the couple froze eighteen embryos prior to the start of radiation.  Curious about their options, Pam researched surrogacy.  The more she learned, the more she became convinced that she should offer herself as a gestational carrier to Henry and Lauren.

“It was a leap of faith,” she explained.  “I had such a desire to give them hope as they were battling cancer.  I asked myself whether I had the mental, physical and emotional strength… and decided I did.”

How did she explain her choice to her husband and children?  “I told my children, ‘Lauren is sick and her tummy doesn’t work right, so I’m going to put her baby in my tummy until it’s ready to come out.  Then, I’ll give it to her.’  They were fine with that.  The truth is, it’s not that complicated.  My husband was totally supportive.  He wanted to help, too.”

Once the cancer was defeated, “with a foundation of honesty, trust, and open communication,” Pam said, “we found our way through the anxieties, challenges and awkward moments of the surrogacy process together.  The day after Mother’s Day (2001), I was thrilled to deliver a beautiful, healthy baby girl for them.  They were speechless with awe when they first laid eyes on Hope.”

What were Pam’s feelings, as the woman who had carried this baby for nine months?  Did she find it difficult to think of baby Hope as their child?  “Not at all,” she said.  “Intended parents fear that surrogates will bond with the babies they carry.  But a stable, mentally-healthy surrogate never feels like the mother; we are more like nurturer-protectors.  We connect with the baby, but we don’t form a mother-child bond.  Our bond is with the parents.”

Any regrets?  “No.  It was the most fulfilling time of my life,” said Pam, “watching my cousin become a father, and seeing his wife embrace life and hope again after the devastation of cancer. It was a privilege to share that moment of joy and wonder with them.”

Is that how all surrogates feel?  “The main motivation of surrogates is wanting to give joy.  They are women who want to help, who enjoy being pregnant and realize that they can give the gift of a life to someone else.  Whether or not they get paid, money is not the primary factor.  It’s a desire to give hope.”

Pam approached her role as a surrogate with a servant’s heart, giving selflessly out of love. That perspective enabled her, and the baby’s intended parents, to move through the journey with healthy boundaries.  “We focused on clear communication, mutual trust and sharing the pregnancy.”  Their experience models the ideal approach to surrogacy – one based on a foundation of love as scripture describes it:

“Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails.”

Pam’s advice to infertile couples considering surrogacy?  “Trust that the surrogate is there for you.  She is not attention-seeking or self-serving.  She is a loving person who wants to help someone who’s hurting become a parent.  Focus on the miracle that is happening through her body, and the joy of anticipating the baby – rather than fear, or the need for control – and it will be a fulfilling journey for both of you.”


Find more resources and cause for hope at PregnantWithHope.com

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Wandering in the Infertility Wilderness

These words leaped off the page of a book I read recently:  “When God calls you to do something, He prepares you in advance.”   The same day, I read about the Israelites ending their 40 years in the desert and (finally!) heading toward the Promise Land.

I started thinking…  What about their journey through the desert was purposeful?  How did God use it to prepare them for the Promise Land?  And, how does that relate to the infertility journey?  In what ways does God use it to prepare us for the “promise land” of parenthood?

The Regional Council of Churches, in its review of Pregnant with Hope: Good News for Infertile Couples, made the comparison, writing…

“This book is a guide for the journey through the wilderness of infertility to joy.  I could not help but think of the children of Israel in the wilderness – their transformational journey.  The lesson learned was to rely on our ever-faithful God, to trust in His hesed.  That Hebrew word, frequently translated as loving-kindness, also means the consistent, relentless, constantly-pursuing, extravagant, unrestrained love of God.”

God kept the Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years before they finally arrived at the Jordan River.  They passed their turn-off multiple times as they literally walked in circles.  Does that sound familiar?  Have you covered the same ground multiple times – cycle after cycle after cycle – wondering when you’ll ever cross over to parenthood?

How do you trust the hesed of a God who seems to lead you in circles?

The Israelites learned the answer to that question through the journey itself.  Their learning can help you find the path through the wilderness of infertility to joy:

  • Look for God – In the desert, God led the people by appearing as a cloud (by day) or a pillar of fire (by night).  He taught them to expect His presence, and to look past each other – and their anxiety about reaching the destination – to Him.  He should be their focus.
  • Follow God – God told the people that He would go before them, and they should follow.  He would lead them to the Promise Land.  When He moved, they should move; when He stopped, they should stop.  They were in a barren and unfamiliar land.  They would not find their way by refusing or neglecting to follow Him.
  • Rely on God – For 40 years, the Israelites relied on God for sustenance.  They had no food or water, apart from what He provided.  He delivered what they needed every day – for that day, which taught them to turn to Him and thank Him daily.
  • Trust God – Some of the Israelites complained bitterly about the length of their journey and the monotony of their experience.  They did not trust God’s purpose or His timing.  He kept them wandering until they died off.  Only those who trusted God and were grateful for His faithfulness arrived in the Promise Land.

Consider this:  God may be using the infertility journey to accomplish in your life what  He did in the lives of the Israelites.

If so, you are in the “desert” not because you are being punished, but because you are being prepared.  Live into that perspective.  Believe that this is a time of purposeful preparation.  Apply the Israelites’ learning to your journey — look for God, follow Him, rely on Him, trust Him — and rest assured God knows the way through this wilderness to joy.

He will lead, if you will follow.


For more resources and cause for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com


Filed under Peace, Trust

Adoption’s Multiple Blessings

For some couples, infertility is simply the product of timing.  Initially, that can feel like a huge disappointment.  But, it can prove to be a great blessing.

Robin and Don met in their early 40’s and married just before Robin turned 45.  Statistically, they had an 87% chance of being infertile.  Robin conceived naturally – twice – but both times, she miscarried soon afterwards.  Said Don, “I thought, realistically, that chances of me becoming a father were slim.  I remember telling some friends one time that that would be my biggest disappointment in life….”

“ It was hard to think that we had passed the point of being able to have our own genetic children,” Robin agreed.  They talked to fertility specialists, but somehow weren’t at peace with IVF.  So, they began to consider adoption.  Here’s how Don described their decision process:

“I’m one who believes you’ve got to exert immense patience to understand – and wait for – what God’s doing in your life.  If you jump to a conclusion, you may miss the message.  At the time, I wondered:  We haven’t been able to get pregnant — is there a message there?  I was listening and thinking:  Is God saying, ‘You shouldn’t be parents?’ or ‘Take another approach’?  I knew God had messages for us, but we had to be listening.”

Psalm 37 teaches, “Delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.  Commit everything you do to the Lord.  Trust Him, and He will help you.”  Don and Robin did that:

1) They entered the adoption process focused intently on God’s love, His purposefulness, and His deep desire to bless them, 2) They sought His guidance and trusted Him to direct their steps, and 3) They chose to believe that He had a plan worth waiting for – one that would be better than anything they could accomplish without Him.

What happened?  Did God help them?  “We were told to expect a 12-18 month wait,” Robin said.  So, they trusted and waited.  Ten days later, they got a phone call.

“Our social worker said, ‘Are you ready to be blown away?  There is a mom who has 5-month-old twins.  She has been wanting to make an adoption plan since she was pregnant, but she’s had a lot of false starts and nothing’s come through.  She’s ready to go through with it.  She chose you.’”

“I look back on it now,” said Don, “and here’s the miracle: if we’d been ready six months earlier, this mom wouldn’t have been ready.  If we had been ready six months later, we might have missed adopting our boys.  God has a way of moving things around so that it’s a win-win for everybody.  This mom needed relief, these boys needed a home – they needed our home, Robin and I wanted children… and God worked it all out perfectly.”

Is their story an extraordinary rarity?  I don’t think so.  After spending five years struggling with infertility, Owen and Kelly had a similar experience.  They felt led by God to move onto a path toward adoption and they, too, are now the joyful parents of twins.

Want another example?  How about Bill Haslet, who emailed me about adopting his twins 30+ years ago.  He wrote, “We received a call on a Friday evening and picked them up on the following Tuesday. Talk about instant family!! Today, they are 33 years old, both married, both fathers, and two of the finest young Christian men I know.  Our lives don’t always turn out the way we might plan them, but God’s plan and his blessings are more than we can even comprehend!!”

Sometimes, infertility is the first step on the path designed to lead us toward  adoption.  Rather than a curse, it serves as the signpost that says, “Adoption’s pinwheel of blessings:  this way.”

Don’t be afraid to follow the signs.


For more resources and cause for hope, visit PregnantWithHope.com

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