First of all, I want to thank all of you who left a kind and encouraging comment or email or text for me regarding my last post. You have no idea how much your prayers have helped. And God did answer our prayers- yesterday we looked at our bank account and there was an extra $200 there from a very generous family member. She didn't even know of our current financial situation, but she is a very holy woman, so I'm sure God gave her a heads up.
I've been having a hard time trusting God lately. This whole recent situation has caused me to look at the cross and close my eyes and make that leap of faith that all will be well. I've been needing some help in that trust area. And what do you know- this week is NFP Awareness Week and this year's theme is Trust: God Has a Plan For Your Marriage.
I was all for NFP when I first read about it long before I even met my husband. It's healthier both spiritually and physically, cheaper and the way God designed our bodies. Thankfully my husband was on board with using NFP before we were engaged.
When I actually got the at home study kit for NFP I was scared. I had irregular cycles. Could I actually learn all this stuff? Could I explain it to my husband? (This is why I recommend going to a class.) But we put our trust in God that with his guidance, we could figure all this stuff out.
The literature I had read had stated over and over that it didn't matter if you had irregular cycles; NFP could still work for me. And it did work. In fact the more I learned about my body and my cycle, the more regular I became, give or take a few days. After my miscarriage and a consultation with some NFP instructors I learned my basal body temperatures were abnormally low and that taking prenatals and flax seed oil would bring my temperature up and possibly be helpful in carrying a baby to full-term. And that worked too!
I discovered a few weeks before my wedding that I was going to be fertile on my wedding night. That wasn't going to stop us. We trusted that if God wanted to bless us with a child that night then we would be OK with that. He knows what we can handle. Well as it turns out, we did not conceive a child that night, nor on our honeymoon where I was super duper fertile.
I started getting a little worried that I wasn't conceiving right away. Since we were open to life and making love on my fertile days, shouldn't we be making babies easily? This showed us that we aren't in control of everything in our lives, including when to have children- that awesome power belongs to God.
In July of last year we finally did get pregnant, but sadly lost our precious baby a few weeks later. Before this event we were always "not trying to get pregnant, but not NOT trying either." After the miscarriage I was scared to death of getting pregnant. We abstained during my fertile times and we had never done that before. But oh my goodness.. just laying there in my husband's arms as he rubbed my back as I drifted off to sleep was almost better than having sex. (I said almost!)
After a month or so after I got my cycle back after the miscarriage I felt that pull to maybe think about being open to another life. But this time our trust was tested. What if we had to go through the pain of a miscarriage again? What if my fertility was negatively affected after the miscarriage that conceiving would be very difficult? We had discussed waiting until we were financially stable, but knew we'd probably never have kids if we went that route. It was scarier this time to be open to life.
But God wouldn't give us anything we couldn't handle. That pull to be open to life became stronger and stronger, and to our surprise and joy we conceived the baby I am now carrying during the second cycle after my miscarriage.
NFP has opened the door to allow me to be more trusting in God not only with planning our family, but with God planning my whole life. If I can make that huge step in trusting him to be a part of our marriage that involves the magnificent power and responsibility of creating human life then I should be able to do that in all areas of my life. I have to trust that God's time is the perfect time- not ours. God's plan is the perfect plan- not ours. I need to focus on one day at a time and see the blessings right in front of me instead of the blessings I hope God gives to me in the future.
NFP has been a huge blessing for my marriage, my health, and my own self-worth. But it has also been a pivotal tool in building a better relationship with God. And that is what I need right now. That is what I need at all times.