"Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, "So shall your offspring be" (Romans 4:18)
I was at the darkest point of my life. I had been hoping for children for over 10 years and the 30s were slipping away from me. My husband sat me down one day and asked me to move on. He told me that he had come to terms with not having children and found a way to move past it. He wanted me to do the same.
The problem was that I didn’t know how to move on.
I had clung to the hope of having children for over a decade. It was such a part of my life that I knew something inside me would die if I let this go. I felt like Abraham, full of God’s promises, but still in a place of waiting year after year after a hard and painful yet hopeful year.
A friend was walking with me through this. As a realist, she was pushing me to start the lamenting process in order to let this hope go. To lament is a biblical process of expressing our deepest and most intimate feelings of disappointment, anger, grief, and sorrow to God. It is getting real and holding nothing back.
"As it is written: "I have made you a father of many nations." He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed-the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were" (Romans 4:17)
For 17 years my husband and I were childless—a reality we could not escape. I was even asked in a job interview in front of a several of people how many children we had. So once again, I became the object of pity as I explained we had none, or at least that’s how I felt.
You see having children is such a normal part of life that most people take it for granted. I think this is why I love Abraham so much. He faced this reality for 75 years before receiving a promise from God that he would be a father.
The promise wasn’t just that he’d have a son, as it was so much more than that: the world would be blessed through him and his descendants (Gen. 13:3). Meaning Jesus—this promise was significant. But what we often overlook is that Abraham and Sarah still had to wait 25 more years.
Can you imagine waiting 25 years of trusting in a promise before you even see a hint of it happening? That’s the hard thing about promises coming by faith (Rom. 4:16), they’re guaranteed, but when we don’t experience them right away, it’s easy to talk ourselves out of them by thinking it’s not God’s will for us.