Life Compass
Keeping You Pointed in the Right Direction

Growing Hurts

I sat in the hospital commissary eating dinner with my wife’s doctor when a nurse came and told us it was time. Our first child was about to make her grand entrance and debut to the world. Now, with the exception of grandma’s and grandma’s as well as various aunts, uncles, and soon to be cousins in the waiting room, the world did not pause for her arrival. But for my wife, Shari, and I this was an evident sign of His favor and blessing on our lives.

For over a year we had prayed and believed God for a miracle. We had been told that child conception for us would be difficult at best. My wife worked second shift as a charge nurse in a hospital in Gloversville, New York. I was an assistant pastor and worked in Christian radio. One night my wife came with a bag from the hospital gift shop. After asking her what was in it and her attempts to keep me from finding out she finally pulled an infant baseball uniform out. We both held it and wept. I hung that little outfit in my closet. Every morning for one year I would place my hand on it and ask God for a child for that outfit.

I believed God was going to open my wife’s womb. As weeks turned into months and disappoints over failed home pregnancy tests failed to produce the results we were hoping … I began to alter my prayer. Maybe we could adopt. Now, there is nothing with adoption. We have been adopted into God’s family. But I really believed was going to give life to my wife. The opposite of faith is scheming, so we put the scheme away and waited on God!

One night my wife walked into the little living room of our first apartment and said, “you won’t believe it.” I responded I would and she said I wouldn’t. After doing this exchange two or three more times she held up pregnancy test kit and said, “we’re pregnant!” I said, “I don’t believe it!” It was true. This came a few months after we left a ministry we had been associated with. The day we drove out of the parking lot I turned to my wife and said, “The Lord has impressed on my heart that there is life in leaving.” Once again God had proven Himself faithful! On that night in April fifteen years ago Hannah was officially moving into the world and into our lives. She would be joined by a brother, Ira, two years later followed by Andrew and Charity. As any parent I love all of my children. Each one is special and a unique individual before the Lord with an incredible destiny to fulfill. But I love Hannah differently than her three siblings. Not more … but different. Being the first she holds a place in my heart none of the other three could ever fill.

Now, my baby is driving! When did this happen? When did she grow up on me? What happened to the little girl who laid between her mommy and daddy and cooed and giggled? What happened to the little girl who sat on my lap on watched cartoons and old Abbott & Costello movies? That little girl who thought daddy hung the moon … what happened?

She is doing what God had purposed for before the foundation of the world … she is maturing and growing up. Our relationship is changing. She is outgrowing her dependency on daddy (other than for money). Hannah is opinionated, focused on her goals, and a non conformist with an independent streak who questions things.

Fearfully and wonderfully made … growing in wisdom and stature. May I not stand in the way of the Lord as He fashions and molds her into the woman He wants her to be.

As painful as growing can be it is a natural part of life. It brings changes we don’t like and aren’t ready for. But remember…anything that can’t grow is dead. I choose life. Even with it’s changes, challenges, fears, and pains. When we feel those things we know we’re ALIVE!

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