19 December 2014

"Thou art not yet as Job..."

That is what the Lord had to say to Joseph Smith when he was unjustly and unlawfully incarcerated in Liberty Jail. I'm going to assume that you know a bit about what Job went through. Unless you're a "Mormon" you may be less familiar with what Joseph Smith was going through at the time the Lord said this to him (among other things) in a revelation. Not only was Joseph Smith in terrible conditions in Liberty Jail - completely inhumane by today's standards - but members of the church were being driven from their homes and even massacred by other citizens of the state intent on driving the saints out. This included many of Joseph's own family. So not only was Joseph in a terrible state himself, but he also had to endure not being in a position to help people that he loved through a most terrible and dark time in the history of the church. And the Lord said, "Thou art not yet as Job."

Out of context that may seem a little insensitive. But the Lord also said, "My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes." Eternal perspective is everything when hard times come in life. This is what I have been reflecting on quite a bit in the last 36 hours or so.

Recently, I had announced that I was finally expecting a child again to friends and family. Not everyone knew how long I had been waiting for that. The short version: I had a miscarriage last June, and had been trying to conceive the minute it was considered safe for me to do so; by March I began to think that something was wrong, and in July of this year we found out what it was. PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). I received treatment for the condition and it was effective, for which I was very thankful.

And then yesterday, I went for my regularly scheduled appointment with my OB. I was 17 weeks along. She proceeded to check on baby's heartbeat. Found nothing. So she checked with a different machine. Nothing, and on this device I could see that there was also no movement. So I was sent over to the hospital next door for an ultrasound. It was confirmed that there was no heartbeat. And the baby measured around 15 weeks, 3 days; this pregnancy was not going to go full term. I was heartbroken. I cried, but I didn't allow myself to cry hard until I got home to my husband. And I continued crying off and on for the rest of today.

I allowed myself to be sad, but I also tried to remind myself of the eternal perspective. I thought about the fact that I already have three beautiful children, all of which I had after healthy and relatively easy pregnancies. I have family and friends who love me and whom I love. I have a husband that I love and adore who is supportive and is a very involved father. Not that there could have been any doubt, but I had to reflect that neither was I as Job. This isn't what I wanted, but I know that my Heavenly Father has a plan for me and for my little family.

There's a hymn that is part of the LDS hymnal that I love, and it also came to mind yesterday. It's called "Lean On My Ample Arm" and is actually not sung often in our church. I suspect that's partially because the tune goes rather high. But the lyrics are wonderful. As all our hymns are, it's based on scripture and it's written as if the Savior is speaking. The second verse says:
Lift up thy tearful eyes,
Sad heart, to me;
I am the sacrifice
Offered for thee.
In me thy pain shall cease,
In me is thy release,
In me thou shalt have peace
Eternally.
In me thou shalt have peace
Eternally.
 This past Sunday a member of my congregation spoke a little about how the Atonement of Jesus Christ not only cleanses us from sin, but also heals us from all wounds we receive while on this earth because He suffered those things vicariously for us as well so that He might succor us in all times of sorrow and grief. I believe that with all of my heart. In fact, I know that's a part of the atonement as I have certainly felt its healing power in my life multiple times. This loss of pregnancy will be no exception. So don't worry about me because ultimately I will be fine. My family and I are in the Lord's hands, and I trust Him with all of my heart.

Note: Just FYI, to resolve this pregnancy (actually a missed miscarriage) I will be undergoing an operation called a D&E during the first half of next week. We've made necessary arrangements for childcare, etc., but prayers are always appreciated if you feel so inclined. :)

4 comments:

  1. Oh Rachael, I love you my sweet friend. There's nothing quite like the loss of what might have been. I am thankful that you can find peace and comfort in your faith. I've been told that the babies that I have lost are still mine, and that I will get a chance to raise them, teach them, and know them in the life to come. I'm not exactly sure how that all works, but it's a nice thought: to think that they will still be part of your eternal family.

    I think it is important to let yourself feel sad. You need to mourn your loss - and then go forward in faith; trusting in the Lord. Like it says in Isaiah our ways are not the Lord's ways: he has a higher plan. It can be so frustrating at times to not know what his plan for us is, but that is where faith and trust come in. You're an awesome lady!!

    https://www.lds.org/scriptures/ot/isa/55.8,9?lang=eng#7

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  2. I'm so sorry. Thinking of you. Thank you for being so open.

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  3. My heart goes out to you and my prayers are headed your direction. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings and testimony of the Savior.

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