Cleaning the milk tank is not my favorite job. Our milk truck driver isn’t very good about washing it and the “milk stone” (where the milk has dried) can be a pain to scrub off.
This morning as I was dipping the long handled brush into hot soapy acid water and beginning to scrub, I sighed in frustration. My glasses were fogging up. I kept cleaning; waiting for the fog to lift so I could make sure everything was done right. Then the glass cleared the sparkling stainless steel came into view.
The acid did its job whether I could see in the moment or not.
So often in life there are moments when we can’t see.
Three days a week I have two little boys that come to my house. The little one arrives just as I come in from the barn. He’s a pickle. Getting into things, messing up my living room, opening cupboards and (his favorite) getting into the laundry soap. I love it. I love his little voice chattering as he plays. I love watching his face when I’m training him to not touch certain things. (We’ve got the barn boots down. Now for the laundry soap…) I especially love it when he brings me Barnyard Dance by Sandra Boynton. He dances as I read.
Then a few hours later his big brother gets home from school. We eat cookies. Play games. Big brother acts so tough when I kiss his forehead but then sits almost on top of me when we go to read books.
Then they leave. Their real mom comes and off they go.
And sometimes, sometimes, things get foggy. I start to wonder… will the day ever come when there’s a little one in my home that doesn’t get taken away?
During the day I can pretend things are good. But then night comes.
What is it about darkness?
That’s when the voice starts accusing and pushing old buttons.
Of course you’ll never be a mom. Why would God give you children? You wouldn’t be a fit mother. You’re lazy and selfish. You’re constantly filled with prideful, lustful, angry thoughts. Everyday you bow your knee to idols of all kinds. There is nothing in you worthy of anything.
And sight is blinded by fog. It feels like someone is squeezing the air out of my lungs.
Here’s the painful, honest truth: It’s real. The fog is a real thing. Those accusations? Real. I am all of those things.
But it never fails. The enemy always tries to push things a little too far. He gets confidant at my weakness and goes for the object of his fury (which isn’t actually me). His voice echoes: What can your God do for a worthless sinner like you?
What can He do? Something looses within my chest and life-giving air rushes though. It’s not about what He can do. It’s about what He’s already done.
It’s true. I am all of those things. That’s why I need Jesus. That’s why I need His Spirit. That’s why His blood spilt at Calvary. So I could have Him. So I could be free.
I am all of those things and I’m covered in blood. That means that I am not judged by them. Whether or not I can ever have children has nothing to do with my own merit. Nothing to do with my own abilities. Nothing to do with anything except that we live in a fallen world.
Proverbs 30:15-16 says:
There are three things- no four!-
that are never satisfied:
The barren womb,
The thirsty desert,
The blazing fire.
If I was to conceive this month and have a child in nine months… would I be satisfied? What if I never had another baby? I know a woman with one baby who desperately wants more. I know a woman with two children who desperately wants more. I know a woman with six who desperately wants more. At what point would it be “enough”?
Another painful, honest truth: If I’m not okay without a child, I never will be with one.
If I can’t figure out how to stand up to the enemy’s attacks now, today– then changing my circumstances won’t change my sorrow.
And the truth drifts in. God allows fog. He does. Because He wants to build our faith. He’s working and changing- whether we can see in the moment or not. He bled and died and rose so we could be free.
It’s not enough to just say, “Okay, God, I believe in you. Save me.” Doing that might break the chains of the enemy- but we still have to walk out of the dungeon. We have to live like we’re saved.
Oh, God, build my faith. Build and build and build. I want to be solid. Not tossed to and fro by lies from the enemy.