Jen’s Gem: Keep your eyes on God in all seasons.
In a few weeks, my daughter will graduate high school. It’s hard to believe especially since I just brought her home from the hospital yesterday. Well, not quite, but you get it. Before I know it, the summer will pass and she will head to college to begin a new life. A life that almost wasn’t.
You see twenty-two years ago, when I was pregnant with my son, I also had a simultaneous ectopic pregnancy. It’s called a heterotopic pregnancy and is extremely rare. As I listened to the doctor explain the diagnosis and impending surgery to remove my ready-to-burst Fallopian tube, my mind wandered to the lost potential of having twins. I thought this would be so cool. Instant family. Days later those thoughts left and my focus turned to the little boy growing inside of me.
Fast forward about three years later when I became pregnant again. Initial blood test results indicated multiples. Soon after, two heartbeats were detected. The excitement and anticipation of the impending possibility of twins was once again dampened only weeks later, when a routine sonogram revealed a single heartbeat.
To say I was devastated would be an understatement. I blamed myself. I wondered if I did or said something that caused this. The following days were filled with grief over this loss, but once again, I had to put my grief aside so that I could focus on the healthy pregnancy – my daughter.
Had my first pregnancy resulted in twins, it’s highly likely my daughter would not have been conceived since my (then) husband only wanted two children. He was not a fan of big families despite having come from one. I, on the other hand, had a different perspective having enjoyed being a part of a large family.
In hindsight, three children would’ve put a great hardship on what was already becoming a strained marriage. Raising my two children as a single parent has been difficult enough. There were days when I couldn’t see my way out of one Scooby-Doo lunch box, let alone three.
Today, all of the struggles, the worry, and the pain disappears when I see the people my children have become. I’m incredibly grateful that God sustained me all of those years. He remained true to His word when, shortly after my divorce, a vision of Jesus appeared to me with open arms, stating He’d always take care of me. He sure has and continues to do so as blessing after blessing are poured out on me and my children.
You see, that’s how God works. He turns circumstances that at first glance seem like they will cripple us into amazing victories that bring us joy beyond words. The births of my children, though each had its own initial complications, have resulted in two amazing human beings. God’s plan for each of them is already arranged and I’m excited to see how it will play out.
Nearly two decades ago as I faced a risky surgery and years later, another loss, I couldn’t see today. The only thing I could see was my grief. Had I had the faith I do today and the knowledge of how God works, I’m certain my outlook would’ve been different. This is not to say I would’ve felt nothing about these losses, but I would’ve been able to see the blessing that would emerge from it because that is what God promises. Isaiah 61: 1-3 clearly states that God will exchange your ashes for beauty.
That beauty will be evidenced as the notes of “Pomp and Circumstance” fill the air next month. That beauty will be evidenced when a cap and gown is worn by my daughter. That beauty will be evidenced on the first day of college and so many more victories awaiting her. Sure – there will be some ashes, but I know I and she will be able to get through each of them.
If you’re suffering from a loss or going through a challenging season in your life, I want you to know that God has an amazing plan for your victory. You may not see it, but He does. He knew you’d be where you are from the moment He created you. He also knew that He’d have a plan to get you out. It only requires one thing from you – to trust Him.
This week I’d like to encourage you to read Isaiah 61:1-3 or meditate on Romans 8:28:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
All things work together for good. Not one thing. Not a few things. All things.
When we keep our eyes on God and His Son Jesus, we can be sure that our seasons of hardship will be turned into seasons of blessings.