I was asked to share the story of Samuel next week at a mom's group at my church. I’ve pondered the year…the month…the season that our story begins.
Does our story begin with March 9, 2001 – our wedding day? When Ryan and I chose Ecclesiastes 3:11 as our wedding verse: He has made everything beautiful in its time. We chose that verse because from our first date – June 22, 1993 to our wedding day – was nearly an eight-year journey. We had a rough ride at times, but God took us apart so that we could find ourselves and Him, and then in His great wisdom and mercy, brought us back together.
Does our story begin with the fall of 2005 when we decided it was time to grow our family? Ten months later I had the great privilege of telling Ryan on June 4, 2006, that he would be a dad. Two weeks later on Father’s Day, we told both of our parents they would become grandparents for the first time. We all cried tears of joy. Then on July 10, 2006, I had the beginning signs of a miscarriage and our lives were changed forever. We never got to hold or meet our precious baby.
Does our story begin with July 2006 as we began a two-year season of waiting? We were tested and found to have ‘unexplained infertility.’ We chose not to pursue fertility treatment and instead waited on the Lord. What followed were months of difficult, impatient, confusing, misunderstood, and painful waiting.
Does our story begin with August 2008, when I discovered God had blessed us with a pregnancy for the second time? Tears of joy could not be contained. Praises could not be kept quiet. A 7-week ultrasound could not hide the precious beat of our baby’s heart. A 9-week ultrasound could not hide the heart-wrenching truth that once again, our baby had died.
Does our story begin with October 2008 when we got a call that a 19-year-old birth mom had just given birth to a baby boy and was looking for a family to adopt him? He was less than 24 hours old. Were we interested? Would she choose us? We knew very little about adoption. But we knew a God who was bigger than our heartache and better than our wildest dreams. From phone call to parenthood was less than five hours.
After wondering, questioning and pondering when our story begins, I realize this story really isn’t about me. Or Ryan. Or Samuel.
I am the storyteller, but this is a story about the Lord. And it’s a story of astonishing grace. Unending faithfulness. Incredible sovereignty. Unexpected blessings. An inconceivable plan. Perfect timing. And a magnificent miracle.
From everlasting to everlasting you are God. And our story will always begin and end with you.