Thursday, February 3, 2011

Saying "Amen" in the Storm.

I've intimated over the past few days that we have had a rough start to the New Year.  It seems that the saying, "when it rains, it pours," often does happen.  January was a month of storms for my family.
Jesse above the Judean Wilderness in Israel.
Jesse left for Israel on January 1st; this was an exciting opportunity for him, but left me heart broken that I would not see him again until the end of the month.  I was not anticipating to be so sad when he left and it was a difficult time for me.  Thankfully, I had my mother-in-law to help with the baby and keep me company, and we made it through.  A week after my husband left, I found out I was pregnant!  We had only been trying for a month and I was quite ecstatic!  I anxiously awaited for the next phone call from Jesse to tell him the news.  It was a sweet time.

A happy moment.
Then, after making it nearly three weeks without Jesse, the time was drawing close for his return to the States.  The day after he arrived back on the East coast, I received a phone call from my mother that my grandmother had passed away.  The news was terribly unexpected, as my Nana had been so active and healthy.  Just that afternoon, I had mailed her a package of chocolates, and the sudden news left me feeling like I was too late to let her know we were thinking of her. Providentially, Jesse was already on the East coast, so he stayed there, while I flew with our one year old to be in New York for the funeral. It was not how I had pictured being reunited with my husband, and it was bittersweet to see him again under the circumstances.

My Grandmother with Anna (her great grand daughter).
The night I arrived in New York, I started to bleed. I brushed it off as just spotting, but the bleeding didn't stop. After my grandmother's beautiful memorial service a day later, we left the funeral procession to go to the hospital. There, it was confirmed that I was likely miscarrying. The baby had no heart beat and my cervix was opening. The next day, the pain felt like I was in early labor, and the faint hope that I had for the baby's survival was quickly diminishing. I came to terms that this baby was not going to make it.

I flew back home with Anna the next morning. Our car was still in New York, and Jesse started the long drive to Colorado from New York. When I arrived at the Denver airport, my mother-in-law informed me that the car had broken down in Iowa and Jesse was stranded 8 hours away. My father-in-law graciously made the trip with a rented trailer to go pick up Jesse and the car, and it wasn't until 5am that they arrived home. The car is still out of commission as we wait to fix the problem (probably the fuel pump).

Yesterday, we received our first response from one of the doctoral schools; a "no."

Financially, Jesse went without a paycheck in January and our seminary health insurance ran out a week before my E.R. visit.

Times like this leave me wondering how many more blows I can take.  We had a similar month of storms in December of 2008, when I got laid off from my full time position (which was funding our first year in seminary). That same week, I found out I had a very large ovarian cyst and needed major surgery. We paid the expensive COBRA payments to extend our health insurance. Later, the cyst was confirmed to be cancerous.

But, a few weeks after this, I found a very good paying position taking care of an elderly lady with Alzheimer's, which included free rent/housing, groceries, and utilities. Four months later, I became pregnant with our beautiful daughter, Anna. A year later, we were featured in an advertising campaign with the hospital where I had my surgery. God was with us in the hard times, and used those times as a great testimony of His faithfulness.

Our Billboard in Boston.
That remains true now. God never left us, and these times of suffering our bringing forth fruit as it says in James 1: 2-4, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."

I heard the following song on the radio yesterday while returning from a follow-up appointment at my doctor's office.  Like Job, and many other saints, I pray that I might say "Amen," even while it is still raining. 

"Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him." Job 13:15


  1. I'm so sorry about your losses. What a heartbreaking time. I'm praying for you and let me know if I can do anything. :(

  2. I think I need to hang that verse of scripture where my husband and I will see it everyday.