I have been telling people that the reason this period of uncertainty and transition has been hard is because in the past I have always had the option of going out to get a job to carry us through. I suppose that’s partially true, but looking back I realized that every time we found ourselves in a period of financial struggling, we would say “Well, at least we don’t have children. This would be harder to do with children.”
To some extent it was whistling in the dark, but to a large extend it reflected an error in thinking that I have just realized I thought. Every circumstance paled in comparison to my infertility, so when I considered my future with children I had assumed that once God solved THAT burden of my heart, every circumstance would be easier. I would have never articulated the thought. In fact I would have vehemently denied that I believed it. But here I am at another uncomfortable circumstance and I am realizing that I am caught off guard, having expected God to have ended our struggling when he provided us with children. It is a faulty view of God and a faulty view of circumstance.
God provides trials to strengthen us and to make us perfect in increments. Sanctification (the process of making us perfect) is a lifelong process, and therefore, so are trials. Just because the Lord saw fit to remove the long term trial of infertility, doesn’t mean that he is removing ALL trials. So this particular trial is is designed for my sanctification and God’s glory, just as all the others have been. Rather than wondering how God could be so cruel to put us through a very minor inconvenience after giving us children, I should be praising the Lord for continuing to work out the promise of making me like His Son, rather than being so cruel to leave me in my state of imperfection.
While that thought was percolating around in my brain, I stopped by an estate sale in our neighborhood. Our family has a circular route we have walked in the two years we’ve lived in our home, and on that walk, half a block from our home, is a large rambling white brick house. We would approach it from the bottom of a small hill, and look up at it from one side, then wind around the house, and end up looking down at it from the other side as we continued on our walk. It has always had the aura of a home occupied by someone old, and I found out on Friday that it had that aura because it was. The old woman who lived there alone died recently, and an auction company was hired to sell the entire contents of the house.
I stopped by in hopes of purchasing a 2nd set of twin sheets for the mackerdoodle’s big girl bed. As I wandered through the house and saw the furniture, kitchen supplies, five (5!) sets of fine china, linens, Christmas decorations, books, videos and varying odds and ends all neatly tagged and assigned a value, I thought to myself, “I don’t want my life to boil down to this. I don’t want my life to end with strangers pawing through my accumulated goods looking for bargains.” It put the current circumstance into perspective for me: making just enough to get by (and if we could sell the house, Jonathan’s job would be just enough to get by) should be sufficient for me. As long as I can provide nourishment and housing for my children, everything else is storing up treasure here on earth, where eventually it will become a burden for my children to sort through and dispose of.
Coming home from that estate sale, I looked around and had two more realizations.
My baby is no longer a new born; he is officially an infant as of this week, and his three month self is almost in six month clothes. So many milestones happen in the first two years! I don’t want to be so consumed with worry that I miss enjoying these moments.
As I wiped milk, pasta sauce, grape jelly, mud, spit-up, and home made popsicle from my hardwood floors, I began to think that my habits will have to change drastically if the Lord provides housing with (gasp) carpet. To quote my nephew: “I not like to think about that.” This house I am so anxious to sell has been a tremendous blessing in a lot of ways.