Monday, May 4, 2020

Jesus Will Not Let Us Sink

Hello! If you missed our special announcement, you can find it here: Baby #2!

We have been praying for this second child for so many years. For those of you who were around when we first got our new-to-us SUV - that's a good marker of just how long we've been waiting and praying. 

Two years. Two miscarriages. We've fought through fear and heartache after heartache for you, Baby #2.

Our most recent miscarriage was in January, so I was surprised when just a month later, around Ash Wednesday, I felt the call to begin trying to conceive again. I was paralyzed with fear, which led me to giving up fear for Lent.

And let me just talk about giving up fear for Lent. It’s much different than giving up chocolate, right? I mean to give up chocolate means you don’t eat the chocolate. But fear is a natural part of being human. So how do you give it up?

I found the answer in 1 Peter 5:6-7
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand that He May lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

I’m definitely not an expert in this, but the way I went about it was a very simple but effective approach. Daily, hourly I was just being honest with myself and God about my fear. When a fear would arise, I’d say (either out loud or in my head) “Lord I give this to you, and I trust you”. After some time of being obedient in this, I felt the release of those fears and I did feel my trust in Him grow.

In the first few weeks of Lent, God was faithful to show me new areas where fear was also hiding. Anger, frustration, irritation. Fear was at the root of so many of those emotions. When he revealed that to me, instead of feeling shame for those feelings, I felt such grace for myself. And that is what he wants for us.

Galatians 5:1 “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”

So after a few weeks, with my fear and all the things that come with it being release daily to God, we were able to step out in trust in this new journey of trying to conceive Baby #2.

Now, we are newly pregnant, during a pandemic. And for somebody whose core weakness is fear, I, like many of us in this season, feel like I’m on a seesaw of feeling His peace and the world’s panic.

Which brings me to the scripture where Peter stepped out in trust onto the water with Jesus, and was so quickly taken by fear in Matthew 14:28-31.

It says, 28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” 29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

I don’t know about you, but I can so relate to Peter right now.

Jesus asked Nick and I to step out into the water IN TRUST, then the winds pick up, and we’re hit with a pandemic at the same time when the pregnancy test turns positive.

I’m wondering if any of you can think about a time when God has called you out into the deep and the winds picked up?

God is so good to have given me peace in those first days after finding out we’re pregnant again, it really was a sense of peace beyond understanding. But this hasn't been a completely smooth ride for us. The winds of fear picked up a couple weeks ago and had me feeling like I was sinking. During week 5 of this pregnancy, we had a scare with some spotting and I was sent in to get an emergency sonogram. Nick wasn’t able to come with me, and probably won’t be able to be with me for any future appointments for a while. Thankfully, I was able to see the baby’s heartbeat and got reassurance from the doctors that everything was continuing to look good. As for me, it took a while to be convinced that this wasn’t the end of yet another pregnancy. My immediate reaction was to assume that this was just the start of another storm.

But things are okay. The baby is doing so well! We are 8 weeks and 5 days along in this pregnancy, now.

There were many times over the past few weeks when I called out, "Lord, save me". And I imagined Him reaching out His hand to me like he did for Peter.

God is faithful to begin a new and good work in us exactly when we need it. I can see His faithfulness in preparing us for these moments as He nudged me to begin working intimately with him on my fear on Ash Wednesday, and if I hadn’t begun then, I don’t know how well I’d be handling everything right now.

I know there may be times when you also feel like you’re sinking, and I just want to remind you that if we call to Him, He is faithful to immediately extend His hand to us, like He did for Peter.

If we call to Him, Jesus will not let us sink.

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