It has happened. Here we are, my husband and I, once again on the journey to parenthood. This time, as you can imagine, is so different from ever before.
Yes. We are pregnant. I felt the urge to share this with you immediately. Sharing with you gave so much life to Gideon, that I felt the same for this little life too. “What if I only have a few days with them, I want to tell the world…” But, this time, its so…well…complicated.
We have decided to not tell our children yet. So in our home they have a mommy who is sick (but not contagious), tired (but sleeping all the time), and literally eating the food off of their plates. Poor kiddos probably feel like they are in the twilight zone, but for now we feel the urge to protect them until we know more.
Today was the first time I let myself feel a twinge of excitement. As we watched the little jellybean on the ultrasound screen, heart pumping and already showing such life I felt a tiny leap of joy. But then I remembered…Gideon’s 8 week ultrasound looked exactly the same. Normal, healthy, moving on track and I just cannot find the place in my heart to feel comfortable feeling like everything is going to be okay. I just don’t know that to be true and though I am fighting the fear away, I won’t let happiness come in either yet.
The first trimester is always a fight for my family and I. And yet, even as I type those words so many women that I know and love flood through my mind. The women I met and prayed for this past weekend on the women’s retreat who sob with the desire to just be able to get pregnant. I think of my other sweet mommies who have lost their little babies, some not pregnant yet (I pray for them and wonder if they simply are not ready yet) and others who just could not have any more. I fight my emotions on the half of these women and battle for the joy that should come with being pregnant. I want to fight for that. Life shouldn’t be like this.
Every woman should be able to get pregnant, from sea to shining sea the ones who want to should bear children as their hearts desire. No parent should ever out live a child. We should die first, after watching our children have children and their children to have children too. Pregnancies should carry no pain, no sickness, and no complications. That’s how it should be. But alas, it is not and so my soul does not rest in taking for granted that everything is always going to be okay.
Yet, even in that knowing I can honestly utter the words…I trust God even if I lose this child too. I trust Him with the bigger plan and I will keep reminding myself that everyday until that day in December when, at 12 weeks, we will go in for an ultrasound to see if this baby has kidneys. If this baby will be mine to take home. If this baby will be ours for my children to kiss goodnight…
In our Fear to Faith class last week we talked about what God does offer protection from. In our yearning for heaven this life will have pain, babies will die far too soon, and pregnancies will start with throwing up every morning. But there is protection to be had.
As I was sharing with my class one of the precious women said, “Maria, where did you come up with these titles? They are wonderful.” I said, “It was easy, I simply wrote down all I experienced through my son’s Gideon’s life.”
And so, here is what we are promised in God’s Word:
Protection from Being Crushed 2 Corinthians 4:7-9 “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”
Protection from Being Uncomforted Psalm 23:4 “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
Protection from the Evil One Ephesians 6:10-12 “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.”
Protection from Losing Our Eternal Inheritance 1 Peter 1:3-5 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.”
Protection from Despair Psalm 37:23-24 “The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.”
Protection from Permanent Weeping Psalm 30:2 &5
“Lord my God, I called to you for help, and you healed me…
weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.”
Protection from Hopelessness 1 Corinthians 1:9-11 “ Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.”
Protection from Wasted Pain Psalm 126:4-6 “Restore our fortunes, Lord, as streams renew the desert. Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest.”
Protection from Being Alone Hebrews 4:14-16 “ Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven,[a] Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
Protection from Everlasting Harm Psalm 121:7-8 “ The Lord will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.“
Protection from Death Eternal 1 Corinthians 15:54-55 “When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”
Protection from Powerlessness Ephesians 3:14-21 “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”
Protection from Purposelessness Romans 8:28-30 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[i]have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”
Protection from Being Unloved Lamentations 3:21-22 “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.”
His Protection is Mighty and Strong (This was Gideon’s Verse) Psalm 71:6-8
“Yes, you have been with me from birth;
from my mother’s womb you have cared for me.
No wonder I am always praising you!
My life is an example to many,
because you have been my strength and protection.
That is why I can never stop praising you;
I declare your glory all day long.”
Yes, some of these I wrestled through. Protection from everlasting harm, protection from death…it sure felt pretty harmful when we found out Gideon would die. It sure felt like death when I handed over my son for the last time. But in all of this I know, that when the final stroke is painted and the picture of my life is through…God will have painted a beautiful picture. One free of everlasting death and harm.
Now…in the same vain I will remember these things for this child too. And Lord, may your mighty, strong, eternal, and powerful protection rein over this life, my families lives, and your life too.