Monday, June 25, 2007

When life doesn't work out like you planned part 2

I've been really enjoying and learning from The Preacher's Wife's "I Am So You Don't Have To Be" on-line Bible study--this is the fourth lesson, and definitely one I need right now. It's been following the life of Moses. In college, the literature module of my religion class focused on a comparison between Exodus and Matthew, and that comparison came back in today's lesson. Both Moses and Jesus gave up riches and rank for a greater good. (The difference is Moses did it out of fear, and Jesus did it out of obedience and humility--see Phillipians 2:8).

Today's passage was Exodus 2:11-15, the passage were Moses sees his people being abused, and he kills an Egyptian. Moses knew he was put in the place he was in to get his people out...but things definitely didn't go the way he intended. The Israelites rejected him, and so did the Pharoah. So he ran.

The line from the Bible study that resonated with me today was "God, I don't understand why not today. But I will trust You for someday." I'm working on that.

1. What is your latest NLIP? (Not Like I Planned?)
A miscarriage in March.
2. How did you react to your NLIP? Are you still upset about it? Happy about it? Baffled by it? Explain.
Initially my reaction was as good as it could be. At first we didn't know if my dates were just way off or if the fetuses were non-viable, though my dates suggested the latter. So we prayed for a miracle. When it didn't happen, I had a month of carrying around death before I finally had a D&C. That was very hard, and I had some degree of closure after that, and I basically dealt with it by being way too busy. I think I'm more mourning the loss of the future than the loss of the babies--I know where they are and that they're in good hands. It's more the loss of the dream, the loss of a family with three kids. I don't know if we'll have more or not, and that's what's so hard.

3. Have you ever attempted to step into an area of ministry and found your desire rejected? Did this cause you to question God and yourself? Perhaps distrust what you perceived to be your calling?

BC (Before Children), I volunteered to help with VBS at our church. When the pastor saw me, his comment was "What are YOU doing HERE?" like I didn't belong. That really stung, and I stopped volunteering there. That was the turning point when I knew we didn't belong there.

4. Do you harbor any bitterness towards any individual or situation which you believe waylaid your best laid plans?

Nope, I more feel sorry for him and his congregation, because he hasn't figured out that the reason that so many people come, get fed, and move on is that there aren't opportunities for people to plug in and use their gifts. I know people fail and it's hard to get past disappointment and open up your leadership to new people, but church is not a spectator sport, you gotta let everybody "play" and use their gifts.

5. Have you had a life experience or trial that left you with a shaken faith because it ended in an NLIP? Please share if you feel free.

I don't know that my faith is shaken, but I'm having a hard time imagining no more babies in our house and my kids only have one sibling.

5. Based on Moses' response of faith to his own rejection, how will you re-evaluate your own experiences or look at future ones differently if a NLIP presents itself?
Well, if you read ahead in Exodus 4, Moses didn't put a whole lot of faith in what God promised him. He had excuses--"who am I?" "but what if they don't believe me?" "Can't you send someone else?" I hope I can learn from his example and not do those things, just trust that if God says to do it, then He will provide the means and the way. Unfortunately we haven't gotten a clear sign whether the miscarriage means two is enough (especially after a prophesy about something in my life being too big and God putting it in a dryer to shrink it to be just right...right when I was starting to outgrow my clothes in the pregnancy) or just not now.

God, I don't understand why not today. But I will trust You for someday.


The Preacher's Wife said...

I too have suffered miscarriages - 2 of them...The first one especially made no just seemed like the universe had lined up for us to have this child at this time!

I had a D&C on March 8th of 1995. My first son was born on March 8th, 1996. How is that for a God of timing?? :)

I pray you feel Him in these hard days....


Ann said...

That is exactly why this is so hard--the timing would have been perfect, at least from a human point of view. But I guess that's what Moses thought too, right? So God's timing, and God's way...we'll see what he brings us :)

Mindy said...

I think I should definatly read that lesson, I think I ask that question every day when I remember that unlike all my friends I'm not getting married yet and I don't have kids even though that's all I want. Such a hard thing to figure out. Sometimes in a few months or years you see why it didn't happen the way you wanted it to, sometimes I think we'll just never know and have to trust that it was right.