Why are we, all humans, so self-focused? Why do we expect people to be sensitive to our hurts and struggles when we are not sensitive to others' hurts and struggles? We expect people to offer support, encouragement, and understanding to us when we suffer uniquely, but we are wholly unable to adequately offer support, encouragement, and understanding to others when they suffer uniquely. Are we even able to accomplish this with our finite abilities?
There are several dear people in my life currently who are struggling through GREAT, UNNATURAL, PAINFUL circumstances. I desire to empathize with them, and I desperately want to understand and support them, but unless I have walked in their individual shoes, I will never fully grasp the depth of what they are going through.
The same applies to my own situations. I would like to share a little more intimately about myself to shed some light on my testimony.
My past is not a pretty picture. My childhood was not wrapped up in a pretty package and set on display for other families to see how a healthy family should be. No. It was quite the opposite. I will not share details for the purpose of not distracting from my message or hurting those involved.
My teen and college years were filled with struggle, wrestling with truth and identity in the midst of family chaos, and rebellion from the Truth God had already revealed to me. The theme of my existence was cause and effect. Hurt then rebellion.
In early adulthood, God grabbed me. He had pursued me all along, but He clutched me tightly and held me close as I progressed into my 20's. He allowed me to live in singleness for several years. I was faithful at times, and at other times, my faith was weak. I walked with The Lord, but I also ran towards the world in times of fear.
He eventually gave me my husband, a godly, sweet man who has loved me well. He gifted me a man who loved me through my sin and saw the heart that God had molded. We wanted children. Desperately. All My heart has ever known was a desire to be a mother. It was my deepest desire to mother many children. We did everything we knew to do. We did everything the doctors told us to do. We allowed ourselves to be poked, prodded, explored, and tested in the most unnatural ways. We were told we were infertile.
My heart has been crushed before. I have experienced the Healing Hand of my Father, tenderly piecing it back together in the past. This time was different. This time I felt responsible. "If only I was a better person." "If only I had enough faith." "If only I could do the one thing a woman is designed to do." "If only I had figured things out sooner, I might've gotten married younger and gotten pregnant." It's almost baffling how I believed I had so much control over something so supernatural.
I am blessed and overjoyed beyond belief to be able to call myself "mommy" to our sweet little boy. Adoption is a marvelous thing created by God, and He is continually teaching us through it.
This brings me back to tonight and the reason for these thoughts.
It is frequent that my sensitivities erupt when I see a healthy, godly family that extends back for generations seem to have no outward earthly struggles or pains. They also flare when I see women so easily get pregnant and proclaim their unexpected fertility all over social media or in conversation. There are real pains in my heart each time stories of labor and delivery or pregnancy are shared. As beautiful and amazing as adoption is, it doesn't heal infertility. As wonderful as my husband can be to me, he can not restore my childhood. There are sacrifices and pains that I will live with until My Father calls me Home to His eternal Kingdom.
Just as I feel my sensitive areas acutely, I know others feel theirs equally as strong. We try to encourage each other, but we can't. The only One who can is Christ. He bore our sin and our weaknesses so that we might be restored for eternity.
The point I want to make is to offer, extend, and receive Grace when you feel the hot flare of your most sensitive areas. This sort of Grace can ONLY come from Christ. I do not claim to have mastered this at all! I am a work in progress and I will be one until I die.
In my pleadings and questioning of the God of the Universe, I have heard His voice quietly and gently heal some of my wounds, as only He can. He reminds me of what/WHO the true desire of my heart should be. It is not a child. It is not motherhood. It is not my own restored childhood. It is HIM. HE ALONE can fulfill the desires of my heart. A healthy, godly family is a wonderful thing. Motherhood is beautiful and God loves mothers intensely. Children are blessing from The Lord. BUT nothing compares to the richness that comes from knowing, loving, serving, and glorifying HIM for all eternity. Regardless of the earthly, temporary circumstances.
Let us always fix our eyes, not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
What are you focused on that you can SEE? What can you focus on that is unseen and eternal instead?!