Over the past several months, and more recently, over the past several weeks, God has given me an overwhelming and overflowing portion of Joy. This Joy is not only an emotion that I cannot contain or keep inside, but has become the essence and whole of who I am! THE JOY OF THE LORD!!! It is a REAL thing y'all! God's Holy Scripture, our holy, anointed medicine says, "Rejoicing(JOY) in the Lord is our strength! Nehemiah 8:10" I can humbly attest to this truth!
Infertility has been such a huge part of who I am and who I am continuously becoming. It has shaped the way I think, respond and relate to the world around me. BUT God has been revealing to me that He is bringing me further than my diagnosis. I love holding His hand as I watch Him lead me through this journey. I love allowing Him to be the Gentleman that He is while surrendering myself to Him, knowing that He has my feminine heart in His strong and mighty grasp.
Before infertility, I was very unhappy. I had reached the goal and dream that I had always prayed and prepared for: Marriage! I read all the Christian/Catholic books on marital relationships, I prayed novenas, I saved myself for my spouse and prayed for him, I came out of agreement with known generational curses and came into agreement with the perfect Will of God, but months into my newly wedded relationship, I was so broken! My husband worked away for weeks at a time and I stopped having periods. As more and more months went by, the less I felt like I had a purpose! I felt like everything I was ever created for was dissolving away. I slowly began to lose the sight of who I was in Christ. I mean how could I have prayed and desired something for so long, to finally receive it and then to feel completely purposeless within the very place I was supposed to have much purpose?!
Thank you God for allowing infertility. Yes, I know?! I am thanking my Lord for allowing this permissible path. I know God is perfect and His plans are perfect. Therefore, evil, sin and sickness do not come from Him nor are they of Him, but some things He will allow and permit for His Glory and Honor and Praise.
I needed to be reminded of His Grace and Mercy. I needed to be reminded of His Love and Compassion! I needed to be reminded of His JOY!! I needed to be reminded of who I was in HIM! Test after test, trial after trial, I began to see glimpses of His presence. I began building momentum in my faith and trust in Him.
Today, my relationship with God can be best described as completely, with out a doubt, head over heels in love with Him!! I can feel His presence when He enters the room, and my heart overflows with love and excitement! I have so much peace and happiness within our intimate relationship and within my marriage! This overwhelming love and this surrender has produced Abounding Joy within me! I am confident in who I am. I love the life that I have been given. I am made whole in the midst of the struggle and storm that has surrounded me over these years! I now know my purpose!
Infertility has brought me back to my Father, and has helped leave behind the broken pieces of who I once was. But now, I have to set infertility at the foot of the cross. It is not who I am anymore! God is calling me deeper and deeper into His presence. Infertility has been used as a buoy, beat up and scared from the waves of imperfection. It has kept me afloat and provided me a foundation that has allowed me to focus on the one who has truly saved me from sinking under! I'm thankful for you, Premature Ovarian Failure, but now it is time to let you go!
My identity is now in Christ alone! I am free, whole and healed in His presence! I delight myself in Him, and His love overflows within my soul! I pray that God continues to lead me on this path of surrender, joy and peace! I pray that He continues to lead me to where He wants me on this road to fertility and motherhood! I know that as long as I hold onto the Hand of my King, that it will be a joyous and content journey each step of the way! I will be so lost in His presence, that when I arrive to the place that I have been searching for, it will be as if I was there all along!
For though the fig tree does not blossom,
and no fruit appears on the vine,
Though the yield of the olive fails
and the terraces produce no nourishment,
Though the flocks disappear from the fold and there is no herd in the stalls,
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord
and exult in my saving God.
God, my Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet swift as those of deer and enables me to tread upon the heights.
Through my walk with Jesus, faith has been a shield. A shield of protection, a shield of trust and a shield of grace. Faith has allowed me to walk with eyes wide open, and simultaneously be inattentive and covered from all of the negativity, cruelty and lies from sin and the enemy! Sometimes, I have even been described as naive, innocent, and oblivious to some aspects of life and situations because of this covering! My joy and surrender can sometimes be mistaken for inexperience, immaturity and inferiority from the world and things that are happening all around me. And that's okay! These assumptions are not totally astray from perception. Jesus teaches us to have "child-like" faith. Faith that can move mountains, faith that can witness without fear and faith that can simply see the beauty in all things that are good, pure and holy in Christ. The enemy can try to underestimate me, but through solid faith and total trust, my God will conquer and prevail.
Over a year ago, when I was diagnosed with Premature Ovarian Failure, I couldn't recognize who I was in Christ. It was a time when my faith was totally shaken. This "shield" of protection, trust and grace was scattered all over the ground. Disoriented and trembling, I couldn't even grasp my stance to pick up the pieces! I felt so betrayed, lost, confused and abandoned!
During this season of turmoil, I would cry out to God awaiting any little glimpse or sound of His familiar presence! I would become so angry! I was so unfamiliar with who I was becoming. I hated being so mad at God! I was fearful to run away from Him, because He was the source of life and love that I had always known. But I was also fearful to come to Him, because I couldn't see or hear Him anymore. It seemed as though every time I would pray or try to surrender to Him, my faith and trust would be tested even more. I was in this place between back and forth; either to turn my back on my Savior or run into His arms.
This restlessness demanded me to BE STILL.
My feet were still planted into the dusty foundation of the battlefield I was on. Though my sight shifted from left to right struggling to decide where I was going to go and though my knees quivering, I kept my stance. I was like a *child*, waiting for my Father to find me in this waste land. Too scared to run, but hopeful enough that maybe He could see me!
Looking back on this season that I was in, God was purposefully allowing my faith in Him to grow. He was testing my trust in Him, my love for Him and my hope in Him! In the stillness and quiet and the chaos and confusion, He was actually the one waiting on me!
Slowly, I gained strength. Piece by piece, I gathered what was shattered all around me. My Shield was thicker, stronger, more radiant and resistant than ever before!
It was the hardest decision of my life; choosing to trust without hearing, pray without ceasing, and believe without seeing! But I am SO very thankful! God graced me with more joy, compassion, wisdom, knowledge, trust and hope than I have ever known or thought capable of having!
My FAITH is uncompromisable! I am steadfast, only yielding to wherever God calls me to go! I am finally content and truly happy in where I am in my journey through infertility. My biggest desire is to become a mother. I will continue to pray and have faith that I will one day be granted that promise! I know that God is the one true source of happiness; therefore, I trust and have uncompromisable faith that wherever He calls me to be, I will have much Joy!
"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people." Ephesians 6:10-18
Isaiah 38 is one of the very first scriptures that God has given me throughout my infertility journey! I had never heard of this story in the Bible before, and what a perfect day it was to be introduced to it, because on that particular day I was desperately seeking and crying out to God! I then opened the Bible to Isaiah 38.
In summary, it is about a man named Hezekiah who was mortally ill. The prophet Isaiah told him to prepare his house, because he was going to die! Hezekiah turned to God and prayed to the Lord crying out, "Ah, Lord, remember how faithfully and wholeheartedly I conducted myself in your presence, doing what is good in your sight!" And then he wept. God then replied saying that He heard his prayer and seen his tears and added 15 more years to his life! As a sign from the Lord that his prayers were answered, God set the sun back ten days!
This scripture spoke to me in such a HUGE and SIGNIFICANT way!! Here I was, newly diagnosed with Premature Ovarian Failure and four months into my marriage that I had saved myself for. I felt totally abandoned by my Lord and Savior who I stood for for my entire life!! I believe I have always had a very intimate relationship with God since a very young age. I have always been BOLD in my faith, and have learned wisdom and knowledge as my relationship with my Savior grew! After getting married, I was ready to have as many little blessing as I could that would go out and proclaim the word of God as I so fearlessly did growing up! But there I was, feeling totally confused, abandoned, and lost. A combination of feelings I have never truly felt before! I was so desperately seeking God, that I couldn't hear or see Him anymore! I felt so blind. I felt the foundation of my entire faith and everything I have ever know completely shatter! Therefore, this is where my TRUST in the Lord truly started to take place and grow. It has, without a doubt, been the hardest testament of my faith, but has also been so rewarding.
Although, I am not where I was, my cry then, and my cry today is; "LORD, remember me!! Remember my faithfulness to you, remember my stand and my Unshaken faith that I have had and will continue to pursue!! I LOVE you God with all of my heart, mind, soul and strength!! Turn back the sun, rejuvenate my ovaries and eggs to the 25 year old organs that they should be Lord!! Give me back time! The time that I lost and never had!! Thank you God! I TRUST IN YOU!!"
I also want to extend my hands out to all of you who are struggling with infertility. That God would hear the cries of your hearts! That He would turn back the time, and restore everything that the enemy has stolen from you. Lord God, place a Quiver Full into their wombs and heal all hurt and pain in Jesus Name Amen!!