The memory is seared into my brain.
I can see it like it was yesterday.
I walk into the classroom reminiscent of the sixties in hues of gold and blue. I smile as I see my-slightly-more-chatty-than-normal-psychology-major friends sitting in our usual front-row-of-the-class seats. I slide into my seat excited, as our newly-favorite professor begins the study of the day.
Counseling Psychology I.
Finally, it is my senior year and already this material is making my Top Hits list.
Dr. Feller shares scenarios with us and we students engage in a lively, guided discussion, especially the loud mouths on the front row.
And suddenly he begins to present the case that would impact my heart for life….
A couple in counseling….
…because they cannot have a baby.
Immediately solutions spouted from the mouths of students in class.
“They have so many options.”
“Maybe they could adopt.”
“They could get a surrogate.”
I raised my hand in frustration, “But what if that is not the point. What if the desire of this woman is to carry this child in HER womb? What if she just needs to grieve that loss?”
My wise professor capitalized on the moment and asked me to role play the part of that woman in counseling. I did my best to portray her heart, her desires, her longing, her sense of loss.
And I walked out of class that day praying to God with a fear lodged deep into my heart that THAT would never be my story.
I did not want THAT testimony, even if it ended in God’s miraculous favor.
Thirteen years later, and four and a half years into our infertility journey, we are that couple.
I am that woman.
That is my story.
Two years into “The Wait,” I railed and blasted at God.
Why would He let me walk through the ONE valley
that I really begged him from the depths of my soul to not let me walk?
And honestly I still do not have a concrete answer.
I cannot tell you why one of my biggest fears came true.
What I can tell you is how I have changed because of it.
How my heart is softer.
How my eyes see grace quicker.
How brokenness has become like my own skin
And how slowly but surely it has absorbed into my person in ways that are beautiful.
I know that might seem funny to say about myself.
But I see Jesus in me so much more.
And where I need to see Him more in my life is NOW so much more painfully obvious.
Somehow that dichotomy, that polarity within, shows the fragrance of Christ in a way that I did not expect.
In this season MOST unexpected, MOST unwanted, MOST undesired, MOST hated, I have found that Jesus is more real than the breath I breathe and the songs I sing.
The pain is still there.
Yet, grace abounds.
The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
Even in the hard.
Even in my fist-gripping control
Even in the stubborn pride
Even in the give-me-what-I-deserve-moments
Even in my judgments
Even in my fears.
His grace abounds.
In my broken pieces
In my empty spaces
In my hollow heart
His grace abounds.
And if this season makes me a little more like Jesus every day,
Who Am I…
…..to say no….???
Even though I had to get there the hard way
Even when I still do it the hard way
over and over again.
His grace abounds….
May you find strength in your broken places today. May the Savior who saved your soul become the One you cling to when the whole world seems to be falling apart. May those moments where you wonder if you can trust Him be consumed with the deep-undeniable-knowing that He loves you above all else, that He is with you like no other, that He holds you in the shelter of His wings, and that in every circumstance His grace abounds all the greater because of your pain.