**This post is very much pregnancy related.***
Never a friend.
But always sneaking up on you, no matter how many times you say, no thanks. You’re not welcome here.
Recognizing and fighting fear became a big lesson for me as we were going through infertility treatments and prayers and whys and what-ifs. I learned a lot about this enemy and I wanted it out of my life for good. But it somehow keeps sneaking back in.
Yesterday, when the baby wasn’t moving like normal, I let it in a little. I knew it was better not to be afraid, but it was a fight to push fear back. Have you been there?
I know I still have a lot of growing to do in eliminating fear and its control in my life. But I’ve learned a little, and I tried to put what I have learned into practice. I prayed. I worried and feared that something may be terribly wrong with the baby, but I prayed.
“There is no fear in love, for perfect love casts out fear.” (I John 4:18a)
That verse continues: “For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.”
God doesn’t punish us. Right?
But bad things happen. They do. I’ve seen plenty. I’m sure we all have. I’ve experienced more than enough, but I’m sure I will experience still more. So how do we go from there to trusting that the bad things that happen can be used for good? Or that the terrible things in our lives can be part of God’s perfect will for us?
“The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21: any wonder why we praise this man’s faith?)
And I thought about it. What if the Lord was taking away this prayed for baby? I know it sounds terrible and gruesome and now, in the light of day and on the other side of this, it’s harder to imagine than it was yesterday morning. But what if? What if the Lord wanted this child to bypass the evils of this world? What if the Lord wanted to postpone our meeting until we might be reunited in heaven? What if he did? Could I face it?
Could I trust that it was to be used for my good?
Could I trust God in the face of that kind of loss?
I prayed that I would be able to. I prayed for trust and faith in him. And I prayed that our baby was okay. And I prayed that if he did in fact call our baby to himself right then that I would keep praying.
I can’t imagine what that would have been like or what that would have looked like. And I thank God that this is not where things are right now. Our baby is fine. Hours at the hospital yesterday hooked up to fetal monitors have determined that the baby is fine. But there was that moment. And in that moment, I let fear sneak in a little more than I should have, but a little less than I would have in the past.
I am growing. But still not completely perfected in love. And still with much to learn.
And I am praising God for the miracle of life that is still alive in me. I am overwhelmed by his mercy toward us and thankful for his grace.
And praying that these next few weeks will go smoothly, that we’ll meet our child soon and on this side of heaven. And that God will continue to grow us in wisdom and to perfect us in love. Because if we let the fear in–it’s too much. There are too many ways this could all go wrong. Yesterday was such a poignant reminder. And a good reminder, also, that this baby is not mine, but the Lord’s. May the Lord use our child for his purposes and to do his perfect will.