3 PM Friday afternoon:
I stared at the pregnancy test and trembled. Is that a line? I think that’s a line. I have to call Sara. I need her to tell me if this is a line.
5 PM Friday afternoon:
Two lines. OH MY GOSH I AM PREGNANT. I have to tell Jon. Creatively. I mean I already called him but this moment has to be Pinterest worthy. I need balloons. Can I get balloons this late? I’ll just make a cute sign.
8 AM Saturday:
No line. This can’t be right. I must just be too early. I need to call Erica. She’ll know what to tell me.
Erica is my mentor and one of my closest friends, who also happens to be my former middle school English teacher. She is Godly, hilarious and who I aspire to be. She is wise and always knows what to say to make me feel better. After explaining my situation she said the following words “Give God a week. Wait. Rest”. Two issues here: I hate waiting and I do not rest. I have to be in control of my body, of my future of what’s going on in there. I can’t just rest.
I asked God for help. I worked out my faith with fear and trembling. I was terrified. I obeyed God for the most part. I didn’t test again before the week was out. I prayed fervently. I drank water. I started my prenatal. I took care of myself. I spent time in the Word daily. I “trusted” that God told me to wait to strengthen my faith in him so that I would grow throughout this pregnancy. I didn’t want to get my hopes up, but deep down I just knew God would fulfill the desire of my heart if I “trusted” and “obeyed” him. I didn’t take another test until the following Friday night. I wanted to wait until Saturday but I just couldn’t help it.
Friday night the answer came but it wasn’t the one I wanted. The test was flat negative. Not even close to positive. I called the doctor. Due to my cycle, and the fact I had recently quit my birth control, what I thought was a positive test was a false positive test. Instead, I was experiencing a hormone surge.
I threw the test away, rather hatefully I might add. I stomped into the kitchen and started to cry. I was mad. Scratch that. I was furious. I told God I was mad at him and was DONE trusting him with anything. I told him that it was a cruel joke to play on someone who wanted a baby so bad. I told him it wasn’t fair. I did what he asked and he decided to “teach me a lesson” instead. Except, I didn’t want a lesson. I wanted a baby. Everyone else on planet Earth is pregnant right now. Literally everyone. Except me. I did all the right things. I did what he asked. I worked hard, and not only do I sit here childless, but also he took one of my babies and played a joke when I tried to get pregnant again. Not funny. Cruel.
My earthly father would’ve whipped me if I had spouted off at him the way I did at the Lord that night, as he should have. But God was silent.
The next morning I was still mad. I was bitter. There was one point I even told the Lord “This is why there are atheists. This is why people don’t believe in you. Why Lord? Why did you put me through this?”
I’m not writing this down because I am proud of myself. I am actually more ashamed than I have been in a long time. I am writing this down because it was in that moment that I drew closer to the Lord than I have in a really, really long time.
Though I was still fuming mad, I reluctantly sat down in the recliner. Lily hopped in the chair next to me. I grabbed my Bible and my study entitled “Wait and See” by Wendy Pope. I thought to myself “What on earth could possibly comfort me right now? Nothing. I don’t know why I am doing this.” I began to read about King David. I then started reading Psalms 16. I stopped at Verse 2 which says “I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing’”. I stared at my Bible and prayed, “Lord, I know I am not supposed to be able to do anything without you. But I don’t like your plan right now. Your plan hurts. And I feel like you are against me in this. Please help me to see who you really are and to actually believe that you are for me. Because I don’t right now.”
I kept reading. The end of the Psalms resulted in praise. I read the chapter again. And again. I found the more I read it, the more encouraged I became. I then read a footnote/passage that was highlighted in my bible that referred to Psalms 16. The title was “Troubles and Complaints in Psalms”. There were a few sentences in particular that stuck out to me that morning and I realized my life was about to pivot. They read “Still, the psalm writers constantly poured out their thoughts and emotions to God. When they felt abandoned by God, they told him so. When they were impatient with how slowly God seemed to be answering their prayers, they also told him so. Because they recognized the difference between themselves and God, they were free to be human and to be honest with their Creator. That is why so many of the dark psalms end in light.”
Saturday morning started dark. It started silent. It started with a bad attitude. With hurt. With bitterness. It started with snapping at Jon when he got in from putting out feed. It started with eye rolls and door slamming. It started with reluctance and tears.
The breakthrough came with a strong shot of honesty with myself and with the Lord.
And though my circumstances did not change, Saturday ended in a beautiful sunset. A full belly. Laughter. Snuggles with my mom and puppy. Sleeping next to my soul mate. Saturday ended falling asleep in the same recliner with my Bible in my hand, determined to read Psalms every night before bed. Saturday ended with closeness to the Lord I haven’t experienced before and a realization that apart from Him, I really can do nothing. It ended in light.
Everywhere we look right now, there is hurt. There is darkness. There is oppression. There is anger. There is bitterness. Disagreements.. We are quick to draw conclusions and form opinions over Facebook articles that have no legitimate facts. We listen to the media as if they are God speaking himself. We are scroll through Instagram instead of scrolling through our Bibles. We demand freedom. We demand control. We demand what we want when we want it. Everywhere we look someone is mad about something. Someone didn’t get his or her way.
We would rather live in a world of false positives and fake faith that doesn’t hurt than live within the boundaries the Lord has set for us and have an authentic relationship with him. Honesty doesn’t exist in our culture because it doesn’t exist in our homes and it definitely doesn’t exist in our hearts. Honesty exposes our flaws. Honesty results in consequences. Honesty brings us to a place of repentance. So we as a culture avoid it like the plague. We want a positive test, even if it is fake. We want hope, even if it is false. We want our desires; even though we know that deep down they will never fill us and in all actuality could potentially hurt us. We don’t want to hear it when we are wrong. We don’t want to be told we can’t. We want to do it all ourselves.
But y’all, much like many issues we face, a false positive will never bring about the outcome we desire. There will be no baby in 9 months. There will be no peace. There will be no contentment. Without honestly repenting and being 100% authentic with God and with ourselves, there will be no redemption. There will be no closeness with the Lord. And without Him, there will be no good thing.