This may seem like an odd Mother’s Day post, but I think it’s an important reminder for all of us. Again, this is one of the devotionals I wrote and recorded for HopeStreamRadio.
Abraham’s son and daughter-in-law, Isaac and Rebekah, faced the issue of infertility—or as it was called in Bible times, barrenness.
Genesis 25:21 says, “And Isaac prayed to the Lord for his wife, because she was barren. And the Lord granted his prayer, and Rebekah his wife conceived” (ESV).
One short verse . . . it can be read quickly and overlooked if you don’t understand its implications, if you don’t have firsthand knowledge of what it means to want children but be unable to conceive and carry a child to term.
I asked a precious young friend who has faced this heartbreaking issue what she and her husband would like others to know about infertility.
This is what she said: “I think we’d say that saying it’s God’s plan or it will happen are the worst things to say. As Christians, we know God has a plan. That doesn’t make this road any easier. Also, you don’t know it will happen. Even though I have one child doesn’t mean it will happen again. The best way to be helpful is to listen, give hugs, and offer to take someone out, take their mind off things.”
This is such simple, yet such profound advice . . . We are all capable of giving hugs, listening, and just “hanging out.” If we seek to be conduits of God’s love before we share so-called words of wisdom, it can be a blessing to the hurting individual, no matter what their circumstance.
And, of course, we can pray for those in our lives who are facing this situation, but this doesn’t guarantee that these dear ones will be blessed with children. God sees the bigger picture. He is trustworthy and loving, but His plans and purposes are often not the same as ours.
In Bible times, women who could not bear children were considered inferior in most every way. How sad!
While society may no longer proclaim this position, the heartbreak and sense of failure is often the case to this very day.
If you are in this position, may I say I would personally like to send you a virtual hug? You are not alone. There are many who feel what you’re feeling, who know what you’re going through. Though this doesn’t change your situation, it is good to know you are not truly isolated when heartache strikes—sometimes repeatedly.
If we are not in this situation but know someone who is, what can we do?
Let’s remember what my friend had to say. We can listen, offer a hug, spend time together doing something fun.
And how can we educate our children on this matter?
We can teach them that they are a treasure, a blessing from God, that the Lord has plans and purposes for their lives. But we must be careful not to imply that couples who do not have children are somehow inferior, less favoured by the Lord. God has a plan and a purpose for their lives as individuals and as a couple.
We can add these dear ones to our prayer lists and bring them before the Lord on a regular basis during our times of family devotionals. While it is fine to pray that God would bless them with children if that is His will, we should also pray that He would draw them close and assure them of His love, that He would reveal His plans for their lives.
Too often when we don’t know the right thing to say or do, we withdraw. “Better to say nothing at all,” we may think, but this only makes the one who is hurting feel even more isolated. What can we do instead?
Why not send a quick “I’m thinking of you” message on Facebook.
Visit a website like dayspring.com and send an e-card to their inbox.
And as unusual as it is in this, the cyber age, why not drop a physical greeting card in the mail? Wouldn’t it be nice to get something in the mail other than bills and advertisements? I’m sure it’s the same for everyone, especially those who are facing this or other challenges.
If we do these things, our children will learn compassion and how to approach those in their own lives who are hurting. And what parent doesn’t want to raise compassionate, loving sons and daughters?
Plus, we just may brighten someone’s day and show them God’s love. What an honour that would be!
This was my Facebook status update this morning and my prayer for all of you:
To all the moms out there . . . Happy Mother’s Day
To all those who would love to be moms (or moms again) and may be hurting today . . . I hope you, too, enjoy many special joys this day.
To all those missing their moms . . . May some special memory bring a smile to your face today.
To all of you . . . May this day overflow with rich blessing and much joy.
And now for my ROW80 check-in . . .
Goals for the coming week and check in to-date . . .
Keep up with writing and recording for HopeStreamRadio
~ not quite as far ahead as I’d like to be
Keep on schedule with work for my clients
~ doing alright
Finish prepping to co-teach a Creative Nonfiction Intensive at Write Canada
~ got to ramp it up this week
Read the 10 required articles
~ on my schedule . . . read one each day for the next two weeks
Keep up with my current blogging schedule
I’ve got to work ahead a little. May is vanishing before my eyes.
Clean, organize, and declutters some
If I do three tasks per day, things will start to look better in no time.
I started my new routine this past Friday. It is definitely working. I’ve been sore for a couple of days. And to think . . . some people actually exercise to keep pain at bay.
I’ve begun a 30-Day Challenge. I’m definitely more conscious of what I’m eating, though not quite as snack-free as I’d like. Monday is a new day!
Last but not least . . .
Check in with my fellow ROWers regularly