Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Hope, Trust, Peace

I wish I could say that I was flooded with joy upon finding out we are expecting our fifth child.  But this is the year of Honesty, and I must honestly say that it took me not days, but weeks - weeks to pull away from the anxiety, doubt and fear and plunge headfirst into the joy that was waiting for me.  Despite my personal beliefs about children and God, I worried.  "How can I handle my responsibilities while lying sick on the couch for months at a time?  Will I have to stop homeschooling?"

Remembering the extent of my illness with my fourth born had me literally knotted up in fear.  I remembered that dark place and had no interest in going back.

Fear cripples us.  It binds us, atrophied, unable to move forward.  Stuck.

Fear makes pain more intense.  Studies have shown the Fear/Tension/Pain connection to be incredibly strong.

Fear can stop a woman's labor in its tracks, never to budge again.  Fear stops us.

The only antidote is hope.

During those weeks of guilt over not being over the moon with joy, I repeated to myself so many times:

Jeremiah 29:11 "I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord.  Plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you a hope and a future."

The only path to hope is through trust, belief.

Do I trust that everything will work out?  With this, my fifth pregnancy, I have 4 prior experiences to look back at, and although there are things there that were undoubtedly hard, painful and difficult, there was a lot of grace there too.  Grace that grew our finances with the addition of each child, almost as if planned that way (by someone other than us, of course).  Grace that drew my husband and I closer to each other each and every time, knit our family together in a fabric of togetherness that never ceases to take my breath away.  Grace that grew me as a woman, as a mother, as a person.

Do I dare trust?

Isaiah 26:3 to 4 (NIV), “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal”.
Trust yields hope, and perfect peace.  Peace, not that there will never be hard times, days, moments where I am balled up sick with tears coursing down my cheeks.  Peace that, although those times may come, there is Hope here - a God who keeps his promises and holds my hand through each and every day.

"Jesus, Savior, help me each day.  Fill me with hope, fill me with faith.  Darkness retreats at the touch of your hand.  Jesus, Savior, help me to stand."

So what are the choices here?  Fear, anxiety, pain...or trust and so, peace.

I know what I'm choosing.

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  1. that photo is gorgeous! is it you?

    i so appreciate your candor here. i get really sick in pregnancy, too, and i can't even imagine how overwhelming it must be at times to care for four little ones also. i trust God will continue to fill you with hope, his perfect love which casts out fear, and his power made perfect in weakness.

    grace and peace (and unisom, vitamin b6, and lots of green apples and rest:)

  2. Hello Suzannah! (I love your name, by the way!). That was precisely it - being sick with my fourth with 3 other littles to take care of was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life...and something I wasn't too excited to repeat.

    So glad you stopped by!!

  3. Fear, it takes us to a place we would rather not be but at the same time it opens us up to figure out who we are and what we can handle. I'm so inspired by your honesty about what you are feeling.

  4. Trust isn't a is merely a pathway to something greater - to God himself. May you be blessed, Lydia.

  5. Oh Lydia, I can so identify with this. Abby was our surprise baby and it was just a bit shocking at first. Now I don't know how I would live without her.

    I've been battling fear a lot lately for different reasons so I'm likely to be writing a lot about it on and off also. It's nice to know I'm not alone.


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