Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Birthday Thoughts

Today, I turn 26.

It is interesting to think back to where I thought I would be at this time in my life. It is proof that I could never escape God's sovereign will for the future.

  • 10 years ago, I thought that I would be celebrating my 26th birthday as my first year out of the University of Florida Vet School.
  • 5 years ago, I thought I may be finishing up in Seminary and beginning a career in full-time women's ministry.
  • 3 years ago, I had no idea where I would live or what I would be doing on my 26th Birthday.
  • 1 year ago, I thought my 26th birthday would be my first birthday as a mother.

Despite all those plans, here I am.

I am not doing full-time women's ministry, but I am the wife of a God-fearing minister who strives to live out the Gospel in our marriage. I graduated from a tiny Baptist College with a degree in Christian Studies, but gained indispensable knowledge and theology. I am a resident of Louisiana which is 10 hours from family, but have some of the best "Miss-Lou" friends I could hope for. I have a secular teaching job, but I have learned to love people who look, act, think, and talk differently than me. I have no child, but have have been blessed to laugh with, cry with, pray for, encourage (and be encouraged by) women who are struggling with infertility or pregnancy loss.

By the providence of God, none of my plans came true. He has me exactly where He wants me on my 26th birthday. I am rejoicing that I serve a God who is in control, and has brought me right here, right now.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Test Results

The test results are in! So, here's an update of what we know so far:

Thyriod: Slightly hypothyroid, began thyroid medication.
Prolactin: Normal
Genetic Karyotype (mine): Normal
Genetic Karyotype (Stephen's): Normal
Phospholipid Antibodies (causing clotting): High normal. Doctor wants me to start heparin injections upon conceiving to prevent any clotting.

So, that is where we are now. I am still waiting to have the hysterosonography. My thyroid levels will be tested again in about 4 weeks to see if my levels are "optimal."

Thanks for all the prayers.

Monday, October 17, 2011

There's no "Christian Luck"

What is the providence of God?

We hear people say things like, “By the providence of God, she lost control of her car and missed that pine tree by inches.” But you rarely hear people say, “By the providence of God, she lost control of her car and hit that pine tree dead on.”  Why is this so?  Isn’t God in as much control in the second situation as in the first?

Yes, He is. But, we respond this way because we incorrectly define providence as “Christian luck.”

God’s providence is not Christian luck. God’s providence is how God uses every event – both the good and the bad – to accomplish his purposes.

So, we see the providence of God in EVERY event. 

In disaster. 

In catastrophe. 

In tragedy.

Sometimes, we Christians think we need to protect God. (Like we could.)  We think we shouldn’t attribute the atrocities of life to God, and try to find another answer. We say things like, “God did not do this Satan did.” We blame our difficulties on the economy, sickness, other people, national leaders, nature and a host of other things.   But, nothing can happen apart from what God permits, and God only permits according to His providence.

This is a truth that Naomi knew well. Her story is found in the book of Ruth. She and her family had moved to Moab (land of pagans) to escape the famine that was ravaging the Promised Land. While there, Naomi’s husband died.  Then, her two sons died. She was left alone with her two Moabite daughter-in-laws, and a foreign land.  Can you imagine? Naomi experienced tragedy upon tragedy.

  • Famine – With the famine she probably experience hunger and the stress of not being able to feed her family.
  • Move – She moved with her family to a foreign land, away from the Promised Land and to a land of pagans.  She was away from her land, her family, and everything familiar.
  • Sons Marrying Moabite Women– This would have been a travesty to devout Hebrew parents.
  • Death of Her Husband – The death of a husband in Naomi’s culture was far more tragic than it is even today.  She would have been left with very little, and would have to rely on her sons to care for and provide for her.
  • Death of two sons – Naomi was now without a husband and living children. She had no one to provide for her, she would have been akin to a homeless person in today’s society. 

Think of all she went through. I cannot begin to imagine. But, what she says after she returns to the Promised Land demonstrates that she understood the Providence of God. She says, "I went out full, and the LORD hath brought me home again empty." She did not say, "I ran into some bad luck," or "Everything went downhill because of the economy," or it was just a "natural disaster." She did not ask God why this had happened to her. She simply said the Lord had done this. It appears that she faithfully and humbly trusted that He had some purpose for it, and she did not demand He explain that purpose to her. She trusted His providence.

Many times when we find ourselves in a painful or difficult situation, we quit talking about the providence of God. We only talk about things being providential when they have the outcome we want. Let’s not be so self-centered; God is providential in all things.  Nothing happens apart from what God wills/allows. God will use every event to accomplish his purposes. He will use all things to bring glory to Himself. That’s providence.

So, whenever famine, disappointment, death or any other tragedy befalls you, cling to this: God has a purpose for it. His purpose is not centered around you, but on His will.  If you are there now, God doesn’t promise you things will get better in this life, in fact, they may get worse. However, He does promise that He is in control and His purposes will be accomplished.

There is no such thing as “Christian luck.” There is only the providence of God.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

An Update

Poor blog. You have been so neglected. Sorry. So, it is time for an update.

Stephen and I went to the reproductive endocrinologist on Monday. We had a fantastic experience and loved both our doctor (Dr. Isaacs) and his nurses. It was such a relief to talk with them.

They ran several tests on me and also took blood from Stephen for a karyotype (the test that will show if either of us have genetic flaws that would be causing miscarriages). So, now we are waiting for all those results to come back. On Tuesday, the nurse called and told me my TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) was higher than what they would like; meaning I am on the hypothyroid end of the spectrum. My levels were within the “normal” range of .5-4.2. However, apparently, in the endocrinology world, they want your levels below 2.5 for optimal pregnancy health. From what I have read, the closer your TSH is to one usually the less your chance of miscarriage or neurological problems.

So, I began thyroid meds ASAP. The drug is not supposed to take effect for quite a few weeks. After 6 weeks we will retest my levels and see if I need a higher dose. 

In the meantime, we will wait on the other test results. This may not be THE answer, but it could be a piece of the puzzle.  So, for that, I am grateful and excited.

On another note, I have had several blog ideas swirling around in my noggin. But, for some reason all the topics are so controversial that I have been hesitant to write about them. So, I am pondering them and may try to find a less “in your face” way to write them. Or, maybe I will just write them and take the heat….. hmmmm.

I have started running again. Why I ever let myself get our of the habit, I have no idea. But, it has felt so good to be back out there. The plan is to train for a half marathon the first weekend of December. Hopefully, my body will cooperate!

School is finally starting to go a little more smoothly. It takes so long to get the classroom management stuff in place. I feel as if I am getting back into the "groove." And it is about time!  The first nine weeks is almost over! Lately, I have been pondering how to get the gospel to my kids. I realize it is pretty much against the law, but it feels so purposeless to only teach them math. So, that's on my mind right now.......

Well, there you have it an update on what is going on here. I apologize for the randomness, but my life is a little random right now. Stay tuned!