Why is it sometimes so hard to turn my troubles over to God permanently? He loves me more than anyone else, yet I find myself trying over and over to take back control of things I’ve turned over to Him. I find myself feeling heartache and pain over something that I previously surrendered to God (more than once!). I don’t understand His plan, so I try to create one of my own – hoping that my desires will become His will. Instead, I should be praying that His will becomes my desire.
Isaiah 55:8-9 says,
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
I know we all have something that we struggle to understand. Something in our lives that we need to completely and totally surrender to the Lord.
For me, it’s dealing with my infertility and inability to have another child. My infertility is not a temporary condition. I dealt directly & actively with it for 3 years after our miracle daughter was born, waiting and hoping and wondering month after month after month. Almost 5 years ago it then became permanent when I had to have a complete hysterectomy due to a lot of complications brewing inside me, leaving me with no chance of another miracle baby in my tummy.
I can’t tell you how often I go down the “what if” path. How often I think, “What if I had just waited a little longer for God to perform another miracle?”…“If I hadn’t given in to the pain…if I had endured longer…would I have gotten pregnant again?”
By the way, that “what if” path was completely designed by Satan. It is a tool he uses to make us stop trusting God. When I’m feeling down and heartbroken about not being able to have another baby – the devil wants me to feel like it’s my fault. He tells me I was weak and I didn’t wait long enough. He wants me to think there is something I could have done about it. He tells me I’m alone.
The TRUTH is – God is in control. The surgery turned out to be a huge blessing in our lives and in addition to some other things I won’t go into here – it saved me from a potentially dangerous cancer that was in the early stages. The TRUTH is that God always has a bigger plan than the one we can see. He knows what’s around the corner and if I will let him lead, he will keep me on the path he has prepared for me.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
A couple years ago, God placed another baby in our lives as a foster baby. We brought him home from the hospital and raised him for 10 months – being told the whole time by the “powers that be” that we would almost certainly get to adopt him.
We didn’t. He ended up being adopted by another family rather than returned to his birth mother.
It hurts. Over a year later it still hurts.
Even in the pain, I am blessed because I was able to form a relationship with his birth mother and have been able to be there for her as a “long distance big sister” of some sort as she has no family and needs to be reminded of how special she is and how much God loves her.
Because it was an open adoption, she gets pictures often of her little boy. As a result, I get lots of pictures of him from her. He just turned 2. Each time she sends me a text message with another picture, my heart does flip-flops. I’m heartbroken. I look at the picture and my stomach just seizes up in knots. I feel weak in my knees. I miss him terribly. However, I am also overjoyed that he’s happy, healthy, and with parents that love him and can provide for him. I have to be thankful for that.
“I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” (Ps 27:13-14)
I have to admit, this past year or so has been rough. I have 6 people super close to me that have either had a baby this past year, or are pregnant and will be having one soon. That doesn’t even count all the people that I’ve barely met or seen with adorable baby bellies or new babies. Don’t get me wrong - I am crazy excited for them! I really am. I’m just also jealous and trying really hard not to be. It’s even worse when I hear some women complain about how easy they get pregnant or how they can’t stand the thought of having more kids, yet they get pregnant with little effort. I want to scream, “Fine! Give them to me!”. But that’s not God’s plan, and I don’t have to understand it. He still doesn’t want me to be jealous. It’s even one of the 10 Commandments!
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” (Ex 20:17)
That includes babies.
Hubby and I still feel called to be foster parents and eventually to adopt (we think), but due to some circumstances out of our control we are having to wait a while before we can pursue it again. Once again God is showing me that I can’t control this – even the timing is HIS.
Fine. So, I surrender it again. My goals. My dreams. My desires. I submit myself to HIS will and pray that he would align my desires with His will and not the other way around. I truly want to feel content and to trust in His plans. I also want my deepest longing to be for HIM. That’s really what He wants too, isn’t it?
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer 29:11-13)
Ok, so I surrendered! What next? Well, just as I think I’ve “got it” and have surrendered it all over to God, I get news that a good friend of mine is expecting.
Lord, this is a test…isn’t it?
I’m supposed to be THRILLED for her. I AM thrilled for her, but I also had to pray for God to take the jealousy away from my heart and to fill me with contentment again.
Amazing how God works, isn’t it? Every time I think I’ve surrendered, He tests me again. Every time He reveals that I’m still trying to hold on to control. How many more times will it take before I finally LET GO and LET GOD have it?
I don’t know what God’s plan is for our family. Maybe our family will remain a family of 3 (plus the pets!), or maybe not. Either way, I pray that I will surrender my will and my desires so that God can truly use me as His tool for the work He has planned for me to do.