Lift my heart and my hands to show my love…
Lead me to the cross, where Your love poured out, bring me to my knees, God, I lay me down…
The God of angel armies is always by my side…
Your name is higher than the rising sun…
I love some good worship. It has always been a place where I felt close to God, mildly articulate toward Him because of the lyrics, and focused on what’s important. Our church is blessed with an amazing team who loves Jesus and wants to see people love Him through music. So great, right? Sure, except when God decides to call your bluff.
Not for one second would I support the idea that God is a distant, cranky deity lying in wait for us to mess up so He can do some smiting. However, I would whole heartedly support the idea that our God likes to bring us into growth by presenting us with the opportunity of challenging circumstances.
You really want to show your love? Ok.
You really want to be near the cross on your knees? Ok.
You really want to know that I’m the God of angel armies? Ok.
You really want to understand how high my name is? Ok.
Hang on to your pantalones.
This happened to me on November 24, 2015. There I was, minding my own business, two and a half months into marriage. Things weren’t quite on schedule, so, per my friend Liz’s advice, I took a pregnancy test. Positive. Waited a couple days. Took another one. Positive. Waited a couple days. Took another one. Positive. I was beginning to think that extra line wasn’t going anywhere.
I’m going to get real honest. Ready?
HELLO. This was our two year plan, not our two month plan. I was just barely figuring out this wife stuff, now I had to figure out mom stuff too? How were we going to figure out job stuff? I had just planned a wedding, and now I had to plan for a human?
Needless to say, God and I had some very heated conversations. I had submitted my life plan proposal for the next couple of years, and it definitely did not include kids. Of course, eventually we wanted kids, but not yet. I was mad at God. I was scared that this was going to change everything between Nate and I before we were ready. I was disappointed that we wouldn’t get to go on our honeymoon this summer as planned. I was even a little embarrassed that we hadn’t waited the prescribed “couple of years” before getting pregnant. I was disoriented because this wasn’t how my life was supposed to go. I was ashamed that I had wanted to be a mom my whole life, and now that I was, I was more stressed than excited.
Oh, I talked a big game. I sang a big game. But this little foray into parenthood revealed where my faith really was. Fast forward a few months. I’ve made some progress, physical and emotional. Baby Sunshine, according to my pregnancy app is a whopping 12 inches long, and she’s testing all the boundaries (at least my internal ones). I think she got the hiccups the other day. We’ve gotten to see her twice on the ultrasound, and it’s the best thing in the world. I’ve heard people say having a baby is like falling in love with someone you’ve never met, and now I know what they mean.
Yep, still scared of how this is going to drastically change our lives. Yep, still disappointed about having to reschedule our two week jaunt in Europe. But. I have felt God’s patient love poured out on me while I was on my knees. I know that He doesn’t make mistakes, and His timing is perfect. I know that for some reason, this baby girl has a purpose that is time sensitive, and so she needed to be born this year. I’ve seen Nate take care of me with an extra level of concern that I hadn’t experienced before.
So, you’re going to sing those songs and talk a big game? Great. Get ready for the ride of your life. He will be near. He will be compassionate. He won’t smite you for having heated conversations full of doubts while in the shower. And He will love you relentlessly through things that will cause you to grow.