Even if you never mother a child, even then, I AM is enough for you. His plans and purposes are greater than this good gift you desire, and He has not forgotten you in the midst of it. His love for you is great, and He has chosen something different for you in this season and possibly every season after. That doesn’t make you less of a woman, less important, or less loved.
I remember finally resting in these truths after years of infertility and a failed adoption placement. What if I wouldn’t be a mother biologically or by adoption? Could I accept that? Up until then, I had felt some sort of control, as if I could make an adoption work without God’s hand. I was actually okay with not being pregnant, because I really wanted to adopt! But when that fell apart too, I was finally confronted with truth. And that’s when God really began to change my heart, removing from the alter of my heart the good gifts that I felt I deserved, and replacing them with Himself.
My husband and I always desired to grow our family through adoption. We firmly acknowledge the call on Believers to care for orphans (James 1:27). Having fertility issues only served to move up our timeline on the adoption process. Several thousand dollars and a failed international adoption later, we were back at square one. We decided to take a few months off before pursuing placement with another country. In those few months, our sweet son was born. I never considered domestic, infant adoption, but just three weeks after meeting a birth mom, we were parents. I did not enter motherhood smoothly. I recalled all the social media posts and gushing new moms who were overcome with love at first sight.
I felt like I was babysitting. Digestion problems and birth complications made the first weeks just terrible. There was still a chance the adoption wouldn’t be finalized. I wanted to go back to work, showered and in clean clothes. I was overwhelmed with guilt. This gift that we had prayed so diligently for was really, really hard to receive. No one said it would be like this. That there wouldn’t be instant attachment for me, that I wouldn’t experience that true, deep love at first sight.
It felt like a strange and unique place, but the Lord taught me valuable truths as I grew in motherly love for our son. These good gifts from the Lord, the prayed for ones, the longed-for ones, will not bring me contentment that only He can fill, and they still need my diligent labor and mounds of His grace. This has proven true for me in marriage, motherhood, career and every other area of life.
He taught me something else too: what it means to be adopted as His child (Romans 8). I forget that I didn’t birth this sweet boy. So do my family and friends! He could not be more ours, and it’s evident by the way he acts, and in his demeanour.
A few months ago the Lord blessed us with a pregnancy. My first thought was, Will I love this child like I love our son? I think that might be a typical response for a second-time mom, and isn’t that the beauty of it? I’m unable to separate an adopted and biological child. How beautiful is that? God loves me in this same way. I am His child! Adopted is past tense! He doesn’t separate me out, but loves me as a Father. And as I grow, I begin to act and look more and more like Him.
As He has given me the gifts that I desired in adoption and pregnancy, I’ve found that I need Him even more. I know every mom that loves Jesus has discovered this truth. I pray for peace, He gives me Himself. I pray for hope, He gives me Himself. I pray for comfort, He gives me Himself. I pray for answers, He gives me Himself. I pray for children, He gives me Himself.
In the waiting, God showed me His great love, grew my patience in His timing, increased my rest in His sovereignty and strengthened my walk with Him.
And in the giving of my desired gifts, He taught me that the gift wasn’t really where I would find contentment and joy after all—it was in Him.
Christine is the Owner of Great Oak Circle, a branding studio specializing in identity creation, online presence & consulting. She’s a lover of Christ, clean eating, crossfit & cupcakes.
*Christine worked patiently with me to design my current website! She is lovely to work with, and so easy going. She also offers Free to Adopt: a free design option for adoption fundraisers.*