What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been…

Two Years… when you look back over two years, it is amazing the changes that happen. People grow older, politicians change offices, babies become children, houses appear on lots that were once empty, traffic patterns change, tv shows get cancelled, and the price of gas goes up and down and up and down. Everything changes in two years. Life is not static, and it would be tragic if it were.

But what amazes me is how much *I* have changed in two years.

I’m one of those people that practically grew up born again. Not really, I had my own time when I realized I needed Jesus in my life. I was 4. Literally, 4 years old. So, when I would hear people give testimonies to the great changes that Christ did in their life after they got saved, well, I just sat there unable to understand what they meant. I didn’t have that huge life-changing experience because I was 4 when I got saved. No real radical transformation. “Yeah, I stopped talking back to my parents and I stopped throwing my veggies under the table after I got saved” just doesn’t compare to the “I stopped doing drugs and sleeping around and robbing banks” kind of testimony. I always felt like I was missing this huge part of the Christian life because I couldn’t use that part of my testimony to illustrate to those seeking Christ how I had been radically transformed.

I had lived a blessed life, a charmed life so to speak. Sure there were some struggles growing up; that’s just part of life. But overall, bad things never happened to me. I had friends that had drama in their lives, and I joked that I vicariously lived the drama through their lives. But in my own life, bad things didn’t happen.

Then, 2 years ago, I had a miscarriage. It ROCKED my world. It shook my faith. I was depressed for several months after it happened. I couldn’t wrap my head around what had happened to me for the longest time. If you’ve been reading this blog for some time or had nothing better to do and read the oldest posts on here, well, you know what it did to me. I chronicled it quite a bit.

But after the darkness lifted, after I got through that very traumatic time, after I realized that it wasn’t God that did that horrendous thing to me, but that I just live in a world full of suffering due to the fact that man sinned so long ago, and that I should not count it strange that I was suffering… After months of working through all of that, I started to get better. I then gave birth to my son, and that alone helped heal much of the wound in my spirit.

I got involved in my local MOPS group, even serving on the steering team this last year. I developed friendships that I did not have when I went through my first miscarriage. I got a bit more involved in my church, and I continued to work on my relationship with God.

What I didn’t realize was how much God was working in me. When I got pregnant in March, I remember telling a friend that I didn’t think I could survive another miscarriage. That the first one devastated me so much, that I just knew I couldn’t make it if for some reason I lost baby #4. And then, the unthinkable happened. Just past 11 weeks into my pregnancy, I miscarried. I remember Eric telling me sitting in the doctor’s office that he was very worried for me.

But this time, things have been different. Yes, I have been through the rollercoaster of emotions. But throughout it all for the most part, I have had peace. And for the first time in my life I totally understand what is meant by Paul’s reference in Philippians 4:7 to the Peace of God that Surpasses all Understanding.

I kinda like how The Message version of the Bible explains that particular verse.

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

At this point, I am a totally different person than I was 2 years ago after experiencing the same thing. God has totally brought His peace into my life. His wholeness has settled me down. And I totally know that He does know the plans He has for me and that this was part of it.

And I know that I this time is different because I do have such an awesome support system. Beyond my circle of family and friends that I had last time, I have found myself in an awesome group of women, and the love they have shown… the intercessory prayers on my behalf… the ones that this time aren’t afraid to just talk to me and ask me how things are… all of it. God has ordained these women to be in my life at this time, and it has been such a blessing, and I will never be able to thank them properly for the love they have shown.

My faith in prayer was almost shattered after my first miscarriage. And even in the past two years, I struggled with making sense of prayer. But now I totally understand how the prayers that have been lifted up on my behalf have been used to strengthen me and give me the peace that surrounds me.

God has changed me. God has used these two losses to reveal aspects of His character that I just didn’t understand previously. Yes, I do have two holes in my heart that will in some way always be there longing to see the babies I have never held this side of Heaven. Don’t get me wrong. But throughout this ordeal this past month, I think I have found myself praising God more and listening more to His voice than I would have imagined myself doing.

So, while I don’t have this amazing pre-conversion/post-conversion testimony to illustrate how God changes a person, I do have these past two years. I am not the same person I was in April of 2007. And I can be grateful after these long two years that God has worked in my life, even through such trying situations, and changed me. He uses the suffering we experience to refine us. He moves us to places we couldn’t have gone without the trials. All things do work together for good (Romans 8:28). We may not understand the how or why for a long time, or maybe even until we are in Heaven with our Creator, but there is a purpose and plan and every detail in our lives is worked into something good. I don’t understand totally why I have lost two sweet angels, but this time I do feel the peace of knowing that there is a greater purpose for this happening, and that God is using this to shape me and mold me for something far greater than I can imagine.

And somewhat related, but just part of a song that has been playing in my head today… (Oh, and Cabbage, I hope you are happy that I finally blogged again)

Cry Out to Jesus by Third Day

To everyone who’s lost someone they love
Long before it was their time
You feel like the days you had were not enough
when you said goodbye

And to all of the people with burdens and pains
Keeping you back from your life
You believe that there’s nothing and there is no one
Who can make it right

There is hope for the helpless
Rest for the weary
Love for the broken heart
There is grace and forgiveness
Mercy and healing
He’ll meet you wherever you are
Cry out to Jesus, Cry out to Jesus

One response to “What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been…

  1. I just wanted to tell you that I can really relate to this post. I too have been in church almost since birth and became a Christian very young; therefore, I always wondered if my testimony could ever help anyone. However I also realized that other events (not just bad stuff that people once did) could help others. I was diagnosed with Crohns Disease just 4 weeks into my freshman year of college landing me in the hospital for 3 months…completely altering the plans that “I” had for my life. God stopped me in my tracks and reminded me that He was in control. I realized that I had become comfortable in my Christian school, Christian home and Christian church rarely even rubbing elbows with anyone non-Christian. He turned my life upside down in my eyes but just where He wanted it!

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