Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Choosing Faith

 

Years after trying to start a family, I found myself at a crossroad. I had spent half a decade riding an emotional roller coaster with the occasional up, but mostly the gut-wrenching downs that only a woman struggling with infertility can truly understand. We had tried almost every medical procedure possible, countless prayers and tears were expended by us and others on our behalf, blessings and fasts were offered, I spent hours upon hours scouring the internet to research adoption agencies and certify us as foster parents not once, but twice, in two different states. We took the classes, completed the home visits, and jumped through all the hoops but never saw a child because my husband’s job took us elsewhere before that could happen. We now were in a new state and hope was on the horizon as we finished our foster certification – for a third time. I was just hired as a full-time teacher, and we were settled into our new home. But as usual, our plans came to a halt.

My husband got word that his unit would soon deploy for 12 months. Upon becoming licensed foster parents, our hope was to take in a newborn. And as much as I longed for a baby and welcomed the challenge, I didn’t know the first thing about them; that was my husband’s expertise and I was depending on him for guidance.

When I learned of the deployment the questions and “what ifs” came: What if he leaves before we are placed with a baby, do I still take one in? How can I take care of a newborn by myself when I know nothing – and I mean nothing – about them? Can I do this by myself while I’m working full-time? Should I wait until he gets home, even if that is a year away? What if we miss the opportunity to take in a child? Was it so stupid of me to even try this with our military lifestyle, what was I thinking?!

My mind was in a constant state of anxiety, and the worries, the worries, swirled inside my head like a tornado, never ceasing. Each day more unanswered questions plagued me and I felt like my body could go into a panic attack at any moment.

The tornado persisted, then one day I read something that was a game-changer for me. In his talk titled, “Faith—the Choice Is Yours” by Richard C. Edgley, a General Authority of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, he said, “Choose faith over doubt, choose faith over fear, choose faith over the unknown and the unseen, and choose faith over pessimism.”

That struck something inside me. I knew faith was an action; you showed your faith by what you did, like praying to God, following His commandments, and serving His children. But never had I really looked at it as an intentional choice; a choice made in my mind and my heart, every day – every moment – in spite of the doubt, the fear, and the pessimism that paralyzed me.

I wrote this quote on a post-it and looked at it every day, over and over, until that is what I decided to do. I cannot explain the logic or science behind it, but as I chose to have faith in my Heavenly Father: His plan, His timing, His charge … the worries dispersed. I felt as if I had taken the tornado swirling around in my head – picked it up – and handed it to my Savior to let Him carry.

Jesus has invited us to take His yoke upon us, and that is what happened; in doing so I gave my burdens to Him. They didn’t go away; questions remained unanswered, plans unforeseen and we were still childless, but I was left feeling light, calm, optimistic and happy. It was glorious!

Every day that I made the choice, to choose faith, I felt the joy and peace that came from placing my burdens on Him. How grateful I am for a Savior who loves me enough to carry my pains, so I don’t have to.


Crosspost here.

**I think I need to add that this experience happened about five years ago. I am humbled to report that we have since given birth to three beautiful and healthy babies. God is good.

Published in Religion & Philosophy
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There are 18 comments.

  1. Spin Coolidge
    Spin Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I don’t have much to add other than to say that photo of tulips looks to have been taken in my neck of the woods.

    I guess I will say this: I’ve never had your struggles. Mine have been different. Ours, I should say. We have four kids. We have had three miscarriages. We had a foster kid for 4 years, were planning to adopt, then he went back to his abusive parents (thank you, government). I could go on. But…the struggle is real, the struggle is hard. And without Christ we would not be able to make it through.

    Again, I don’t know your struggle, but I know deep painful struggle. I know what it is like to ask why and get no answer. I hope that your faith in Christ will bring you the peace that surpasses all understanding.

    • #1
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:14 PM PST
    • 10 likes
  2. Mark Camp Member

    Ajalon,

    I more than liked what you shared with us, thx.

    M.

    • #2
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:16 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  3. Doug Watt Moderator

    A lovely post, may God bless, and protect your husband, and you as well because in a very real way you serve as he does.

    • #3
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:28 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  4. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Spin (View Comment):

    I don’t have much to add other than to say that photo of tulips looks to have been taken in my neck of the woods.

    I guess I will say this: I’ve never had your struggles. Mine have been different. Ours, I should say. We have four kids. We have had three miscarriages. We had a foster kid for 4 years, were planning to adopt, then he went back to his abusive parents (thank you, government). I could go on. But…the struggle is real, the struggle is hard. And without Christ we would not be able to make it through.

    Again, I don’t know your struggle, but I know deep painful struggle. I know what it is like to ask why and get no answer. I hope that your faith in Christ will bring you the peace that surpasses all understanding.

    Hi @spin, I think you know this struggle more than most. Thank you for your kind words and I am glad to hear you and your wife have been able to have a family. I am happy to say that this experience happened about five years ago, and we have since had three beautiful babies! The struggle is real and hard and many experience it. I’m grateful mine ended up the way it did. And this picture was taken at the Tulip Festival in Northwest WA. We have since moved but I loved attending it. 

    • #4
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:58 PM PST
    • 12 likes
  5. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Ajalon,

    I more than liked what you shared with us, thx.

    M.

    Thank you @markcamp.

    • #5
    • January 23, 2020, at 6:02 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  6. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Doug Watt (View Comment):

    A lovely post, may God bless, and protect your husband, and you as well because in a very real way you serve as he does.

    Thank you @dougwatt, I appreciate the kind words.

    • #6
    • January 23, 2020, at 6:03 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  7. GrannyDude Member

    Thank you, Ajalon. And: Three babies! Wahoo! (Lucky babies). 

    Also: Spin, you’re a peach. 

    • #7
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:01 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  8. Annefy Member

    I am always humbled by stories like yours. I have very, very few talents. Getting pregnant was one of them. I have four children and two grandchildren (only one kid is carrying the heavy water; the other three have been reminded it’s time to step up)

    Blessings to your and your family. God is good.

    • #8
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:28 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  9. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Thank you for an inspiring post. Blessings.

    • #9
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:58 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  10. Spin Coolidge
    Spin Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Ajalon J. Stapley (View Comment):
    And this picture was taken at the Tulip Festival in Northwest WA. We have since moved but I loved attending it. 

    And you live in NY now, I gather from your bio? We are about to move from northwest Washington to Eastern Pennsylvania!

    • #10
    • January 23, 2020, at 8:11 PM PST
    • 1 like
  11. RightAngles Member

    I chose to have faith in my Heavenly Father: His plan, His timing

    I can so relate to this! We tried for years. Like you, we tried everything. I drank the blue dye, took fertility drugs for several years, and nothing happened. When I was 42, I went off them because I read that the safety of taking them any longer was unknown. We decided we’d be the cool aunt and uncle. But God’s plan and timing made it so I had my daughter when I was 45 and had stopped trying. Your words about His timing struck me, because I often thought God sure knew what He was doing not letting me be a mom when I was younger! He planned it to happen when I was wiser (hey! who laughed?) and more settled, not to mention so grateful. I’ve often told my daughter that no baby was ever more wanted. Congratulations to you.

    • #11
    • January 23, 2020, at 9:06 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  12. RushBabe49 Thatcher

    God is good. So are you and your hubby and kiddies. Good things come to those who wait, and pray. 

    • #12
    • January 23, 2020, at 9:45 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  13. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    What a wonderful post!

    May you and yours be blessed, be always grateful, and always look to do good with every blessing you receive.

    • #13
    • January 24, 2020, at 11:19 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Spin (View Comment):

    Ajalon J. Stapley (View Comment):
    And this picture was taken at the Tulip Festival in Northwest WA. We have since moved but I loved attending it.

    And you live in NY now, I gather from your bio? We are about to move from northwest Washington to Eastern Pennsylvania!

    @spin we do, and Pennsylvania is beautiful, a different kind of beauty than WA, but beautiful.

    • #14
    • January 28, 2020, at 5:41 PM PST
    • Like
  15. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    I chose to have faith in my Heavenly Father: His plan, His timing

    I can so relate to this! We tried for years. Like you, we tried everything. I drank the blue dye, took fertility drugs for several years, and nothing happened. When I was 42, I went off them because I read that the safety of taking them any longer was unknown. We decided we’d be the cool aunt and uncle. But God’s plan and timing made it so I had my daughter when I was 45 and had stopped trying. Your words about His timing struck me, because I often thought God sure knew what He was doing not letting me be a mom when I was younger! He planned it to happen when I was wiser (hey! who laughed?) and more settled, not to mention so grateful. I’ve often told my daughter that no baby was ever more wanted. Congratulations to you.

    Thank you @rightangles!!! That’s an amazing story! I am thrilled that you were able to have a child. It can be a long and bitter wait, and 45!!?!??! God’s hand indeed, you’re like Sara – kind of. I agree with the more mature and grateful. Motherhood is not easy, especially with 3 under 3, but I often think back on how I longed for these babies and I am so thankful that I am blessed to have them. He is definitely in charge, and just letting go and accepting that was pivotal for me. Thanks for your kind words.

    • #15
    • January 28, 2020, at 5:47 PM PST
    • Like
  16. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    iWe (View Comment):

    What a wonderful post!

    May you and yours be blessed, be always grateful, and always look to do good with every blessing you receive.

    Thank you @iwe, we try!

    • #16
    • January 28, 2020, at 5:48 PM PST
    • Like
  17. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Annefy (View Comment):

    I am always humbled by stories like yours. I have very, very few talents. Getting pregnant was one of them. I have four children and two grandchildren (only one kid is carrying the heavy water; the other three have been reminded it’s time to step up)

    Blessings to your and your family. God is good.

    Thanks @annefy! I am sure you have more talents than you say. Everyone has their trials, they all suck, but there is something to be learned from them.

    • #17
    • January 28, 2020, at 5:49 PM PST
    • Like
  18. Ajalon J. Stapley Coolidge
    Ajalon J. Stapley

    Annefy (View Comment):

    I am always humbled by stories like yours. I have very, very few talents. Getting pregnant was one of them. I have four children and two grandchildren (only one kid is carrying the heavy water; the other three have been reminded it’s time to step up)

    Blessings to your and your family. God is good.

    Thanks @annefy! I am sure you have more talents than you say. Everyone has their trials, they all suck, but there is something to be learned from them.

    • #18
    • January 29, 2020, at 3:57 PM PST
    • Like