Infertility: A Weakness On Display

by Katie Reno

“We can ignore even our pleasure, but our pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” ― C.S. Lewis

I’ve always had the desire to be a mom – a mom to many children.

A couple of years after my husband and I married, we pursued starting a family.  Six months went by, then a year slowly passed, and I was still not pregnant. Growing up, my best friend and I longed to raise our children together. By the time her beautiful baby girl arrived, I was sick over not getting to be a first time mom with her.

Another year went by, and I felt the struggle of infertility beginning to creep in…

I was continually begging the Lord to open my womb.  Why would He not want to give me this desire of my heart? My husband, Kyle, and I were praying for a miracle. We had numerous family members, friends, and spiritual mentors praying for the same. The Lord heard our prayers, and even though it wasn’t what I was asking for, He answered.

“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:8

After seeking God’s desire for us through prayer and fasting, He sweetly led us toward a defined direction…adoption.

It’s funny now to look back on how Kyle and I met. We were on the same mission trip in Ecuador seeing each other minister to children many would consider “the least of these.” We started talking about our relationships with Jesus while washing orphans’ feet and giving many their first pair of shoes. Little did we know God was planting a beautiful seed in both of us to love the fatherless.

We dreamed together about adopting after first having kids biologically. But, as I can see now, God’s plan was far better. The story of adopting our son, Cooper, continually puts me in awe of how much the Lord loves to give His children good gifts (James 1:17). I’ll never forget the moment I held Cooper for the first time. I’m still speechless God chose me to be his mom.

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Is he not the cutest thing in the world?! I don’t know if I could love that blue-eyed, baby boy any more. He makes my heart swell with joy!

We all hear stories of women getting pregnant after adopting a baby. I thought maybe God would give me that story. Yet, another year went by, and I was still struggling with this weakness called infertility.

This past year, Kyle and I sought answers from a fertility specialist. The conclusion was it’s not impossible, but improbable for me to get pregnant. My desire to be “a mom to many children” may look slim.

The waiting room in a fertility clinic feels cold and is full of women with little hope on their faces. It’s hard to look at anyone because your weakness is so clearly on display.

One day, while I was there and feeling somewhat hopeless, the Lord kept asking me to read Psalm 16.  As I waited, I looked up the chapter and felt God’s Word speaking in power:

“Lord, you give me stability and prosperity; you make my future secure. It is as if I have been given fertile fields or received a beautiful tract of land. I will praise the Lord who guides me; yes, during the night I reflect and learn. I constantly trust in the Lord; because he is at my right hand, I will not be upended. So my heart rejoices and I am happy; My life is safe. You will not abandon me to Sheol; you will not allow your faithful follower to see the pit. You lead me in the path of life; I experience absolute joy in your presence; you always give me sheer delight.” Psalm 16:5-11 (NET)

Things I’ve learned through the journey of infertility:

  1. God is always working a greater purpose in our lives, and I know that now. He promises to lead His children in the path of life.
  2. The greatest day in history is coming, and that is ultimately what I am waiting for. Jesus is coming back! He will wipe away every tear and put an end to pain, sorrow, and death (Rev. 21:4).
  3. There is more satisfaction focusing on the Giver of life than the gift of life.
  4. It has been a privilege to encourage other couples toward the beauty of adoption!
  5. The Lord has graciously never wasted my pain. When I’m experiencing defeat, He always brings someone along who needs encouragement in their weakness.

A beautiful truth about God is, He is always nearby during our weakest moments. Jim Cymbala said it well:

“I discovered an astonishing truth: God is attracted to weakness. He can’t resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him. Our weakness, in fact, makes room for his power.” 

For those of you struggling with infertility, I wish I could give you a big hug right now! What a journey God has you on. Plant your roots deep in Christ – by the streams of living water. Not only are you able to grow there, it is your foundation in order to stand firm through the storm.

To all of us, may we surrender our weaknesses and make room for Christ to display His power. Trust me, it’s worth it!

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21

Katie Reno

*Feel free to connect with Katie via Twitter @katiereno.

*We know Katie is not alone in her story. Have you experienced a similar struggle? Would you like to share how God has been near in the midst of your pain? Can we pray along with you? We’d love to hear from you in the comment section below, on our Facebook page, or via Twitter @missionalmother. 

 

7 comments

  1. jane nason says:

    Somehow your blog entry showed up on my fb page. I enjoyed reading it so much. I, too, struggled with the ability to get pregnant and carry a baby, but this was after the birth of our first two children. Yes, I was very thankful for the children God had given us, but that did not lessen our desire for more. After three heartbreaking miscarriages, God allowed us to adopt a precious son. For him we will every be thankful, but God showed His favor and allowed me to become pregnant one more time. That son is named Jonathan Samuel Nason. I know you know him well, and he is truly a blessing for us that we were afraid we wouldn’t have. Thanks for sharing your story.

  2. Amanda O says:

    What a beautiful story, and not dissimilar from my own. You have so eloquently described the grace of our Savior. My husband and I adopted our son after many struggles as well. What blessings God holds in store for us!! Three of my friends and I just published our adoption stories on Kindle (its called Dear Child). Its a fun and quick read – but be ware – it is a tear-jerker for those of us who have gone through this!!

    Thanks for sharing your story!

    • missionalmotherhood says:

      Thanks for the comment Amanda and for sharing about your adoption stories on Kindle! I’ll check them out! – Lindsey

  3. Roz says:

    My husband and I struggled with infertility mostly in silence because it was a topic where everyone had some advice why you aren’t pregnant. We were led to adopt and have been blessed so much by this little boy. We know have another son and we know God’s plan was so much greater than our own.

    • missionalmotherhood says:

      Roz, thank you for the comment! God’s plan is always obviously best in hindsight, but still can be a difficult road along the way. Thanks for sharing part of your journey!

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