“Happy” Father’s Day

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For many years my husband and I have tried to have children. We have prayed, we have read books on the issue, we have visited others who have prayed for us and we tried the wonders of modern medicine…. But to no avail.

At first I was frustrated, angry and hurt. I would see other women my age and often younger falling pregnant and I would congratulate them through gritted teeth.

I stopped going to events and socials because it hurt to see others and their children.

I would see pregnant tummies and new mommies cuddling their babies and I would cry… I wanted that. I wanted to feel what it felt like to carry a baby in my womb. I wanted to feel the warmth of my baby feeding on my breast. I wanted all those things and more.

But my pain wasn’t all my own. When I looked at my husband, I could see how he loved children and it broke my heart thinking about what a good father he would be. He was strong and gentle and enjoyed teaching and playing with other people’s children.
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Gradually, I learnt to submit my will to God and I started to force myself to enjoy the benefits that we have as a husband and wife without children. We can come and go as we please, sleep in on a Saturday morning, and have as many “date nights” as we like. These are just a few of our luxuries as child-less parents.

Then God blessed us with a cat. She came into our lives by “accident” but we both believe it was no accident. We rescued her from the dog and since then she has filled a gap in our hearts which helped me to heal from the hurt of infertility. We found something to love and enjoy and she loved us back which was a wonderful bonus.
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I felt whole again. No more pain and no more longing. I enjoyed our quiet nights as well as our spur-of-the-moment outings. I enjoyed sleeping in on Saturday morning and having fun with my hubby. I didn’t feel the need for a child anymore.

But then came Mother’s Day… And now Father’s Day….

It still hurts.

It hurts that I will never be a mother. I won’t ever get a mother’s day card or flower…. It hurts that my husband who would be an excellent father won’t have that joy. I can’t give him a father’s day card or help our child prepare him a special breakfast.

I know it’s silly! How stupid to put so much emphasis and emotion into a commercial and man-made holiday which is probably only there to help businesses make money. But it hurts nonetheless.

In a few days/weeks I will probably get over the hurt and move on because I trust in my God and I know that He is Sovereign over all… but there are others out there who don’t know this or they have lost sight of it for a moment like I did.

I am voicing my pain for those who need to know that there are others who know your pain too.

God knows what the loss of a son feels like. He understands our pain. The world isn’t perfect but our Saviour is! He has died in our place so that we can be free from death and the curse of sin. I can know peace in my heart and soul because of His mercy and grace. Hallelujah!

When the pain comes again, as I am sure it will, I will remember that God is in control and I will think about how much He loved me to die in my place. This is enough for me!

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Man and his plan…

keep-calm-and-rest-in-the-lord-7The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps.

Proverbs 16:9

 Every day I wake up and move through the day with a plan in my heart. “I will spend more time in preparation for my lessons… I am going to mark those tests today… I am going to eat healthy… I will spend more time in prayer today…” Some of these plans are fulfilled and some not.

You might have plans and goals too. What are your goals?

It is good to plan and prepare but we must remember to rest our plans and goals in the hands of God. If Christ is truly LORD of our lives, we rest in Him and submit our plans to His will. It is the LORD who establishes our steps.

The Sovereign Will of God

I have often asked myself the question… How do I know if something is the Will of God?

Last week I had an exciting experience and it just confirmed to me that God is in control. He directs our paths.

Michael and I have been deliberating about our vehicles for some time now. I have an Audi A4 and he has a Nissan SANI 4×4. We intend to go into the mission field next year and honestly neither of our vehicles are suitable!

My Audi is a good family vehicle to use on respectable roads and will not work out in rural Africa. His Nissan, although it is 4×4, is very thirsty on fuel. It also uses PETROL where up in Africa DIESEL is much more readily available and thus will be the fuel you want to be using. His Nissan is also not roadworthy and far from reliable on the rough roads into Africa.

A couple months ago the light debate started… Should we sell our vehicles?

“My vehicle is good for us to move around here in Cape Town. It is economical and …it’s a nice car!” said I, “so let’s sell your Nissan… It is rusted and not licensed. Let’s not bother anymore with trying to fix it!”.

“No”, says Michael, “The Nissan has a good strong engine. If we sell it we won’t get what it is worth. Let’s sell your car and get the Nissan ready for the field…”

…And so the deliberation continued with neither of us too willing to sell our vehicles. I was desperately clinging to the only thing I feel I possessed (although technically we were married in community of property and even though it was in my name, I didn’t possess the car either…)

So 2 weeks ago we had to go to George for Michael’s eye operation (he had to have a pterygium removed from his eye) and we drove down with my car… We spent a lovely weekend with friends in George and in our travels we came across a Toyota Hilux 4×4 bakkie that Michael thought was perfect! Not only was it Diesel, it was a Toyota (spares are more commonly available in Africa) and it was one of the older models which makes it easier for Michael to fix (he fixes anything!!!). This bakkie was being sold for R69 900. We didn’t have this kind of money and we had resolved not to go into debt so here was a problem…

That night I lay in bed and pondered the matter. I could see an answer to the problem but I didn’t want to see it. What if…? Dared I think it? What if we sold both our vehicles and bought the Toyota? That could probably work but it would mean I had to sell my car!!?

The next day I suggested this to Michael and he was thrilled! What a brilliant idea! The next step was to advertise our vehicles for sale and see what happens. Michael had tried advertising his vehicle in gumtree almost 2 months before this but had had no response so we realised we would need to try more avenues.

Well, God had other plans. On our way back from George my car broke down. We had to get my insurance to come and tow my car to the nearest town (which was Swellendam) where we could assess the problem and decide what to do. The towing company happened to also be a mechanical workshop and they said the car could stay there the night and they would take a look the next morning to see what was wrong with it.

The next morning we were told that the cost for repairing the vehicle was way more than we could afford and we obviously were not planning to keep the car for much longer, so we sold it.

Yes, you heard right. We sold the car to the mechanic. As a last resort Michael just threw the question out there to the mechanic and asked him if he would be interested in buying the car and for how much. The mechanic said yes and gave a reasonable offer and after a short discussion I told Michael that we need to cut our losses and sell the car.

This is how it happened that I came back home car-less… Strangely there was a smile in my heart. I had been listening to the audio book “In His Steps” and God had been speaking into my heart about materialistic things and the hold they have on our lives spiritually. Selling my car, although a sad parting, was like lifting a burden off my shoulders because no longer was this an issue in my life. I was set free from the materialistic attachment I had with this earthly possession.

Now, as I said earlier, Michael had advertised his Nissan almost 2 months before in gumtree but had had no response on his advert. But after my car broke down, a strange thing happened… While we were sitting in the Audi near Swellendam, waiting for the tow-in service to arrive, Michael had 2 calls from different people who had spotted his advert on gumtree and were interested in buying the Nissan. Is that coincidence or what? This was crazy! The next day there was another call from someone who wanted to buy the Nissan and was hoping to come and take a look. Since then there has been a few more calls and they will be coming to look at the Nissan with hopes to buy it.

What an incredible God we serve! I relate this story to you just to show that we sometimes try to organize things but God knows what is best for us and He coordinates things in such a way that everything works out for the best.

Romans 8:28

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose