I'm Michelle and this is my story.
I accepted Christ at the age of 10. My parents were believers, and they made sure we were taught about the validity of the Bible. They made sure we knew how important it was to live according to Biblical principles. They, most importantly, made sure that we understood what it took to go to heaven – and where one would go if they did not accept Christ. So, not wanting to spend eternity in hell - and completely believing the Bible to be truth – I accepted Christ at an early age. Did I completely understand what accepting Christ really meant at the time? Absolutely not … but God had that part already worked out.
I continued to have good Biblical teaching poured into me throughout the rest of my teenage years at home- yet somehow, I was not grasping what it truly meant to “accept Christ.” In my head, I understood and believed the Bible, but my heart and my head were in two separate places.
My heart chased after things of the world, while my head continued to learn more
about the Bible – more about God.
My college years were quite challenging. I definitely had a fear of God, which kept me making the “right” choices for a while, but eventually that began to fade. Thankfully God sent a great group of friends into my life to pull me back in the right direction. I was beginning to understand the “relationship” part of the Christian walk. I still had along way to go.
After college, I met my husband. We got married after a few years of dating. He was “Christian.” I was a “Christian.” He was raised in a Christian home – so was I.
So, what’s the problem? The problem was that neither one of us had a true understanding of what it meant to follow Christ with our hearts. We were playing the game: went to church like good Christians should, participated in more Bible studies – again – increasing our “Biblical knowledge,” etc…
We were the couple who lived how we wanted to (and justified it), yet still believed we were good enough to please God. And since were under the assumption that God was in our box and we made our own decisions (Let’s just ask God to bless them), naturally we also decided it was time to start a family. We never prayed about it or even asked God about it. It was a good thing to want children, right? Why did we need God’s permission or blessing?
6 months later – not pregnant. One year later – still not pregnant.
And so begins the doctor visits, lab work, tests … more doctors, more tests, more procedures. Finally, the news that shook me to the core: “I’m sorry, but short of a miracle, there’s no way you two will be able to have your own children. Please consider adoption.” After two years, it’s over? Just like that?
Still being of the mindset that I am in control of my life, I let anger fuel me into proving this doctor wrong. I decided that we would do more. We will go see an infertility specialist. I was not accepting this news. So – more doctors, more tests, and much more expensive procedures to try. The next tow years would prove to be the most difficult years of my life. Save money – try a procedure - procedure fails. REPEAT.
Each failed procedure made me angrier and angrier with God. My justification for being angry was as follows: “I’m a Christian. I’m a really good Christian. I’ve read my Bible, gone to church, tried to be good …
and you’re still punishing me. What is so wrong with wanting to have children?
Why won’t you give that to me?
The Fall of 1996, we agreed that this was our last attempt, for we could not afford to keep spending so much money on all of this anymore. I could not continue to go through the emotional roller coaster ride any more. This would be our second and final IVF attempt. Everything went smoothly (as before), and now we just had to wait for the pregnancy test. The Saturday before I was due to get my pregnancy test, I started cramping and showing signs that I was not pregnant.
I had reached the breaking point. I had no strength left. I had no more resources of things that I could do. I was physically exhausted from all of the pent up anger I had towards God. I was done begging, screaming, pleading my case before Him. My four-year battle with God was over. He had won.
I got alone with God. He had broken me and I needed to admit to Him that I was sorry for trying to demand anything from Him. God was instantly forgiving me – for I felt his spirit flood me with love and strength. At that moment, I understood that what He wanted from me (as a Christian) was my heart and
my surrendering to His plans for me.
On Sunday, my husband and I somehow managed to go to church. God was still working on my heart that morning. I felt so strongly that I needed to go down to the altar that morning to let God know I was serious about surrendering to him.
Monday morning I was scheduled to go back to the hospital for my pregnancy test. In my heart, I knew I wasn’t pregnant, so I didn’t really see the point. Instead of heading toward the hospital, I decided to just go straight to work. Halfway there, I keep hearing the words – “go get the test” – “go get the test.” Maybe God was checking to see if I was serious about this who “surrendering” things, because I talked out loud to Him, asking Him why I needed to go through that torture – only to hear the same words again – “Michelle – go get the test.”
I turned around and did go get the test (reluctantly). As I left the hospital, they wanted to know how to reach me with the results. I told the young lady not to call me because I already knew what the results would be and that the only reason I came in was because I was just doing what I was told. (meaning – doing what God had told me to do)
The rest is a blur. I did get that phone call at work. The out of body experience that I had when they told me I was pregnant will never fade from my memory.
God didn’t bless us with a baby. He blessed us with two babies.
I delivered our twins in April of 1997. I’m so thankful that my God is patient – He stayed with me throughout my journey and guided my steps so that I could finally see and understand that Christianity is about loving someone so much that you actually want to surrender to them and live to please them. I accepted Christ and what He represented at the age of 10, but He taught me how to love Him and that love is what enables me to surrender to Him.