The Truth, The Whole Truth and Nothing but The Truth

So I've had this internal debate going on since I started the blog: how much do I want to share and what do I keep to myself?  After lots of thought I went back to the old adage - honesty is the best policy. we go!

Many people have asked if this baby was planned or an "unexpected blessing".  I guess it's both really. After I graduated pharmacy school everyone expected us to immediately start a baby factory. We always knew that it was best to wait until I was done with school. We had put off friends and family (especially moms) by saying "We'll have a baby when I'm done with school." Little did we know that was easier said than done.

In February, 2009, we officially stopped trying not to get pregnant = I went off the pill. By July I was pretty heartbroken that we hadn't gotten pregnant yet. (Keep in mind I have two sisters who are both Fertile Myrtles.) I just thought it would happen when we wanted it to. When it didn't, I started reading - online, books, whatever. While I learned a lot about fertility, I still was not pregnant. Every month there was that hopeful waiting which was always followed by tears and a period.

In all reality, most months our timing wasn't great. Being on call when you're ovulating doesn't help anything. Having really irregular cycles also makes things frustrating. Although, the longer I was off the pill, the more regular things got. The longer we didn't get pregnant the more we started to search God's direction for how we were to have children. There was discussion of adoption - which we are still open to for future children - but as a woman, I felt like I needed to experience pregnancy. I began to pray, "God if this is not what you have for me, take away my desire to be pregnant." As gut-wrenching as that was to pray, I knew deep down that's what I wanted. I wanted/still want God's will.

We let very few people in our struggle. Family and small group - that was it.  Pretty soon it became easier to just act like we were waiting or not ready with everyone else around us. We didn't want to be dishonest, but really, we thought enough people already knew too much about our sex life!  When people asked when/if we wanted children, we just put them off by saying, "Someday" and smiling.

Pretty soon, we got distracted. Our focus changed from getting pregnant to building a house. We started on the house in September 2009. Although, it was sometimes hard to choose things for rooms that would go empty for who knows how long. We knew that eventually we would be parents and those rooms would be filled with laughter and love and little people - no matter how they came to us. We were continually praying for God's timing.

A few weeks after moving into our lovely new home in June, I started to just feel...weird.  I'm not sure how to explain it; I just knew something was diffferent. I waited several weeks after "the weird feeling" started to take a pregnancy test. It was very late in the day when I took the first one - I know, NOT the best time to take pregnancy test. But I knew it would be positive before I even took it. Tanner had his doubts. I think he just didn't want to get his hopes up.  We had been so hopeful so many times with painfully negative results. When I showed him the test he just started smiling. You couldn't have wiped that smile off his face with a baseball bat! He finally believed me after that. He did, however, throw another pregnancy test at me first thing the next morning just so we could confirm. 

And so the saga ended...and began. More than learning that God would sustain us through difficult times, we learned that maybe some of those times are self-imposed. I truly believe we could have saved ourselves years of heartache by simpling praying for God's direction. We just decided it was time for us to have a baby without consulting the God who would give it to us. Lesson learned - until like the stupid humans that we are, God has to teach us again. 

Thank you God for being such a patient teacher!

Train up a child

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

For the past few weeks I've been contemplating the preacher's message from 8-29-10. Our church is currently doing a series called "Pieces: The Family Puzzle." Last week's message was on the character of our children. Dan (our pastor) quoted John McArthur - The true measure of success for Christian parents is the parents' own character. It struck me - I've been reading and research and poring over all this information about pregnancy, but how much have I been preparing my heart for parenthood? Lord willing, this pregnancy will continue without complications to yield a healthy child. What next?

Although I believe God gives children personalities and attitudes that are unique, I also believe that how they are parented plays a huge role in who they become. I want to raise generous, driven, humble, loving children. But above all else, I want to raise children who know they were created by a God who loves them, and who will bring Him glory. How do we raise children who reject the "scientific" dribble of the world and embrace the truth of where they came from? How do we teach children to "speak the truth in love"?

Although these are things that I'm sure I will never completely figure out, I want to try. I thought I would share a few points from the message if for no other reason than to remind myself.

1.Parental success depends on the parents' actions - not the child's
    By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life. Thorns are snares are in the way of the perverse; He who gaurds his soul will be far from them. Train up a child in the way he should go and when he old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:4-6

2. Children are a blessing not a burden

3. Parenting should be a joy, not a grief
    Correct you son and he will give you rest; Yes, he will give delight to your soul. Proverbs 29:17

4. The most important influences in children's lives are their parents, not their peers.
    Do not be deceived: "Evil company corrupts good habits."  1 Corinthians 15:33

Three biblical "must dos" to successful parenting:
1. Teach your children the truth of God's Word - Deutoronomy 6:6-9
2. Discipline them when they do wrong - Proverbs 13:24
3. Don't provoke them to anger - Ephesians 6:4

As you can tell, this message had a lot of good stuff for parents. Especially first timers who are clueless and paranoid! In light of all that, my focus is starting to change from pregnancy to parenthood. Lately, my prayers have shifted from, "God give me a healthy child" to "God teach me how to raise a child that brings You glory." I know that God has given us this child at this time to fulfill a very specific role in His kingdom. I can't wait to see what it is! 

Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this? Esther 4:14