Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Wierdness antidote

Antidote to feeling wierd? P R A I S E..!
Thank you God for loving me; for giving me the chance to experience life so I can have the opportunity to:
  • Take a breath of warm sea air
  • Laugh like a crazy woman
  • Act like a kid
  • Watch a summer storm
  • Feel the sun of my face
  • See the love in my husband's eyes
  • Receive an email from a much loved friend
  • Drink a Starbucks tall decaf trim mocha
  • Be able to love You

Thank you for creating me for love; to be loved and to give love. This is good and You are good.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

My wierd world

I will preface this post by saying that I am ok. I love the place I am in and thank God for bringing me here. There is minimal pain and it's great! But I find this place right here and now a little wierd. A bit surreal. I found myself in a place where I am giving advice to my (darling) sister. Advice about babies- I mean how do I know??? But I do and it's good advice! And lending her books that dear friends have bought as gifts for me, for my babies. I don't mind at all as I love her and it doesn't hurt (honest!) But it is a little wierd and I find myself having another "Sliding Doors" movie experience.... is this really happening?

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Tapora bliss

We just had an amazing Anzac weekend up at the bach (holiday house). Only us and the cat!
I looked across the harbour and was reminded that God is Sovereign. It was so reassuring. In the stress of everyday, sometimes my life and problems become so big, however God is bigger. He is Sovereign. He is Lord.

My definition

I refuse to be defined by infertility. Victory in this area is not our ultimate goal. We have to have more than the goal of victory in this area- Christ alone has to define me. I should never focus on the achievement of one goal, however good.

Paul talk about pressing onwards towards the Christ and the goal of finishing well. If I am too centred on one goal, when I achieve it, I set myself up for disaster as what do I have then? A nothing or a hollowness. The stats talk about the high percentage of IVF women who suffer from post natal depression. That's because they have been focused on this one goal for so long and poured so much energy into it, that when they achieve it, they have nothing afterwards.

Christ alone defines me- He is my goal. Nothing less.

Great things

I love looking at the life of Moses. He is so real. An ordinary person called by God to do great things. He had incredible authority and God used Him to lead a whole nation not much smaller than New Zealand.
I bet he was like us, wanting to do great things for God and asked God to be used by Him. Like us, he probably never realised what "doing great things for God" meant! It's tempting to look at Moses' life and think that he had it easy. That it wasn't hard for him, I mean he's Moses!
But the things that God calls us to do are seldom easy. They mean hard work, tears and pain. Yes, they are amazing and mean that we live lives that are truly used by God, but they are plain hard!
Moses saw God face to face. He was a main of faith and a friend of God. Incredible. But imagine Moses after meeting God and hearing what he was to do, walking back to Egypt. With a donkey or a camel, with his wife (who had NOT heard from God herself..!) along those long and dusty roads. Day after day they would have walked all the way back to the place of Moses' failure, Egypt. No smart soldiers or chariots, no rich houses to stay in along the way, they would have camped at the side of the road. Then when they reached Egypt, Moses would have had to walk, dirty, dusty and tired, into the incredible majesty of Pharoah's court- alone. And then stand before a "god" sitting on his throne and make an unbelievable demand to let the people
Easy????? I don't think so! Probably harder than anything I will face.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Choices postscript

This week my amazing younger sister gave birth to her first child. He's gorgeous. Someone asked me if I was ok about it and my response was that I choose to be ok. It seems funny to be asked that as I really don't have much of an option. I do have a choice but if I am to carry on and be a semi-normal human being, then I have to choose to be ok. And making that choice by faith brings God's grace into the situation. Yes it was hard to see little Ben initially, but not as hard as it's been in the past. And that's progress! It doesn't mean that there was no pain at being childless and grief rose up and slapped me in the face on Thursday night, but it was small and temporary. I was with amazing women who prayed for me there and then and God really spoke to me. I hold onto these incredible words as I choose to be ok by faith:
I wait quietly before God
for my hope is in Him
he alone is my rock and my salvation
my fortress where I will not be shaken
My salvation and my honor come from God alone
He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. Psalm 62: 5-7
P.S. The friend asking me if I was ok asked it in love and was just checking and giving me an opening to talk about it and I appreciate their question. xx

Friday, April 18, 2008

The F-Word

Failure. A great word. It's one that tries to haunt me and hangs around me when I am vulnurable. Failure. The failure to produce children and be a "proper" woman. Often a woman is defined by her children and the ability to produce them to carry on a family line. And a man's fertility is seen as integral to him being a "real" man. So as people walking through this particular journey, it's critical that we do not allow ourselves to be defined by our ability to procreate.
This is hard for me as it's my body that is struggling to fall pregnant. There is no issue on Michael's side at all, in fact the very opposite. So I have really had to get close to God to hear what He says about me, as the word failure sneeks up on me when I am emotional, sick or tired.
When God created the earth and people, there were no children at first. God says in Genesis 1: 31 that what He created was "excellent in every way". So the family unit (Adam and Eve) was pronouced excellent before they had children. So as a woman, I am excellent the way I am now. I do not need to produce children to be whole and we are a family unit now.
When failure comes knocking, it's friend "guilt" comes along as well. Guilt reminds me that I can't do this and shows me what Michael is going through. It becomes my fault. Michael is incredible and tells me again and again that he would choose me regardless. I am so blessed. But I also need the Word in me and I find that Romans 8:1-2 helps me so much when I am feeling guilty.
So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. For the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you through Christ Jesus from the power of sin that leads to death.
So get lost guilt and good-bye failure!

Monday, April 14, 2008


I have been thinking about choices over the last few days. How in every situation we have choice. Sometimes it seems as if we don’t have a choice but in fact we always do. In my unique and rather dramatic way, I thought about the most extreme example I could, a prisoner of war camp. Would you have a choice then? I mean, to disobey your captors would mean that you would not survive. But even then you have a choice- obey or not obey. The consequences of not obeying are pretty awful but you do have a choice.
Bringing it back to this struggle, sometimes it seems like we don’t have a choice at all. I remember getting news of yet another pregnancy and after hanging up the phone, laying my head down in my arms on the table and weeping. I couldn’t hold it in; it burst out of me like a flood. So what choice did I have then? The pain was so real and the grief overwhelming. But I think the choice came later, I had to make a choice to stop crying and pick myself up and turn back to God.
It sounds so easy but I know it’s not. The emotions in this are so extreme that sometimes all you can do is hold on as you get swept along by them. But eventually you will come to a place where you are able to make a choice. Sometimes I haven’t made the right choice at the right time and have chosen anger towards God and despair. It made it harder for me though in the long term as eventually I did turn back to God. However I had to wade back across the mud to him as I had been swept along too far and for too long. I made it too hard for myself. God didn’t move away, I did.
So as I focus on this new season of trusting and waiting, the question God is asking me is “what will my choice be”? Will I choose to trust and love and wait? To allow Him to complete His work in me and in us? Yes, with all my heart!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

True worship

How many times have we wept as we stood in church and worshiped God? That bottle that God says He has in heaven with my tears in it is the jumbo 3 litre version! The poor worship team looking down at me from the stage for the 1oooth time, weeping as I sing....not very joyful!
But I realised something. This journey builds deep things into us, it carves depth into our beings. Before we started this process, my faith, my soul and my being were shallower. Not bad, just shallower. Not shallow in a bad sense but untried and untested.
I remember one morning in church understanding that the recent battle I had fought had resulted in depth being carved painfully into my soul. And realising that I was worshiping God from that depth, from the bottom of what had been carved into my soul. The place I was worshiping from was beautiful as it was deeper and more real. What I had walked through had enabled me to give God more of me and worship Him from a place that was inaccessable before.
When we worship God in the middle of a trial it's truly a sacrifice of praise. It costs us something to lift Him up in our circumstance. To go beyond how we are feeling and allow ourselves to worship Him from the bottom of the place that hurts. That is true worship.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Ethical Dilemma

How do we choose fertility treatment and a course of action as Christians? Afterall everyone seems to have an opinion on how far to go with treatment and what is ''ok" by God.

I remember sitting in a meeting and a speaker that I respect incredibly, said to the audience that IVF was unnatural and not part of God's plan. Sitting in that room was me, going through IVF treatment at that time, another girl who was pregnant with an IVF baby and a third girl with an IVF baby on her knee. Plus this speaker had popped her babies out in record time with no problems.

We are all entitled to our opinion and some prominent leaders are quite vocal about their opinion in this area. I think though, until you have walked a mile in our shoes, you have no idea what it's like and to shut off hope for someone is a big call.

In my humble opinion, how far is too far is between you and God. We have to stand in front of God one day and give an account for our lives. That's pretty scary and so we pray and seek God for ages before pursuing any treatment.

I thank God for an amazing couple in our church who paved the way with IVF. They sought God and asked the hard questions and so it was easier for us. Not that we just piggy backed off their decision but we know that they hear from God and IVF was ok for them.

Now it's us at the end of the IVF road looking at other treatment. We really need to fast and pray and seek God as we may be ground breakers if we continue forward. So how far is too far for us? Only God can tell us.

Natural order

I am the eldest of three girls. And life has always followed a natural order. As the eldest, I graduated from school first, had a boyfriend first, got married first etc etc. Then the middle sister did all of that and then the youngest.

But infertility has turned that order on its head. I am the only sister without children and both my sisters are waiting to give birth to children. In fact our middle sister is going to have her second child.

God has a sense of humour as I remember saying to my youngest sister, when the 300th person around me fell pregnant, that the only thing I couldn't bear is if she had a child before me. Why? She's 9 years younger than me and in my head at that time, it would have been the final nail in the coffin of Sam being infertile.

But here I am- the thing I said I couldn't bear is right here. So can I bear it? Surprisingly I can. Does it mean that I am destined to be infertile forever? No, of course not. Will it be hard going into the hospital to see the babies? Of course it will. But their gain is not my loss.

That's really important to remember. God does not play favourites, no matter how it looks or feels. So when I walk into that hospital I will remember, by faith, that I am the apple of His eye and His promises for me are ''yes and amen".

Friday, April 11, 2008

Sliding Doors

This is the craziest road ever. As the news about my fertility has progressively got worse and worse, it takes on an air of unreality. Could this really be my life? I love the movie Sliding Doors and feel like I am honestly living in the movie sometimes. I think that there must be a parallel life running alongside this reality that is in fact my "real" life. A life with a cluster of small children around my knees where to fall pregnant is natural and normal. Sometimes this feeling has been so strong as my life becomes surreal with the continued downhill slide of bad news about my fertility. I have caught myself actually physically looking around and wondering how I got here!

But I have to face the fact that this is where I am right now. This is my life and the life that God has chosen for me here and now. There may be a "better"reality for me in the future but this is it now. It's quite sobering as I have so much to be thankful for. For a start, salvation, and from there God could do nothing more for me my whole life and I would still be incredibly blessed.
So I am grateful for the blessings I have, yes I would love kiddies, but I am blessed here and now. Believe it girl!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Ok, sort of scared. I am not used to being open like this. Anybody could read this! But I know it's right. This struggle is so common and becoming more and more prevalent. So we have to tell our story, particularly those of us who have been on this road for a while. I am struggling with the temptation to be anonymous but God is challenging me. Being open means being open- full stop. So here goes!
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