Three months ago, Cody and I welcomed our first children after years of infertility struggles. Those years of sorrow, isolation, and heartbreak were redeemed by the growing and stretching of our faith and belief that God is sovereign, that is He is always good and that we will never lack any good thing. Today we’re the parents of three beautiful, gassy miracles: Crew, Tessa, and Emmy Lou.
When the babies went in for their two month appointment, I knew we were facing their first set of booster shots. I knew they were vaccines and medicine that have been carefully designed and assembled to spare children from far worse, even deadly, diseases. I thought I was ready for my babies to get their shots, but when the first shot went into Tessa’s leg and she screamed in terror and pain, my heart shattered and I sobbed along with her. Three shots, three band-aids, and innumerable tears for each baby.
I couldn’t help her to understand that this pain and horror she was feeling now wouldn’t last forever. That we were trading a short term pain for a greater good to keep her safe and healthy. All I could do was hold her through the tears and whisper in her ear that I loved her and that she was safe.
Looking back over the months and years of my own tears and pain and heartbreak crying out to God for a child, I can see His love covering me in the same way that I covered my own children through their booster shots. My Heavenly Father was showing me that my pain wouldn’t last forever, and that my temporary suffering would lead to an eternal refining of my faith, and that he loved me through all the brokenness.
My understanding of my pain and circumstances can be so small and limited, like Tessa’s understanding of her shots. In the midst of my trials, I forget to see the eternal picture and lean into the goodness of God’s character. I forget to view my trials through the knowledge that His ways are higher than my own…
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
and that He would not allow pain without causing something new to be born
Shall I bring to the point of birth and not cause to bring forth?” says the Lord; “shall I, who cause to bring forth, shut the womb?
says your God.