Something that made me smile this morning. ~Emily~
Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.- Habakkuk 3:17-18
The past week has been fairly difficult and emotionally challenging. I’ve definitely felt little reason to rejoice. I have had significant heartache and bitterness. I’ve felt hopeless and attacked. In a 30 minute span of time one morning I had not so encouraging news from my doctor, found out someone had a baby (when you’re dealing with infertility, this is an emotionally packed moment), and had to deal with a case at work involving the death of a baby. My already aching heart was crushed!
The P31 devotion today came at such a pivotal moment. I can easily identify with the fig tree that doesn’t bud and the bare vines. I feel like the the olive crop that has failed and the field that did not produce fruit. This past week I, too, have been empty like the pen and stalls.
When I read this scripture this morning, I knew that even though I’ve been “empty” here lately, I had choices to make. I could either allow satan to steal my joy or I could choose to rejoice in God my Savior. I want joy! I have the choice to either be bitter at where God has me, or I can embrace it and be right where He wants me to be. I want to be where He wants me! I also have the choice to lose patience, or trust in His timing. I want to trust in Him!
Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit
We love America’s Got Talent. The Silhouettes are hands down the best group we’ve seen on this show.
If you are battling infertility, or have battled it in the past, I know how hard it is! You always feel like there is this stigma about infertiles. Then there is the heartache of wanting something and not being able to get it. The waiting is hard, especially if you’re a planner (like we are!). But there are things that can help during the journey.
Find a friend- Easier said than done, but it is such an amazing blessing to have someone who is on the same journey or has been where you are to confide in.
Praying- I’m sure you’ve heard it before! But there are days when IF really beats me down, and I’ve got nothing left to give. When I finally give up trying and turn to the Lord for the comfort and peace I’m longing for, guess what happens? I tend to find the peace I need to rise above and keep on going.
Hannah’s Hope by Jennifer Saake is an amazing book based on the story of Hannah, found in first Samuel.
Hannah’s Prayer Ministry- online support system, blogs, etc. Here you can find Christians who are on the same journey.
999 Reasons to Laugh- I just found this website, and have found myself laughing hysterically at some of the very true things they post. I would even suggest this to fertiles, just so they could get a peek into what the other side faces. (Please note that this website does contain some language)
It seems the past few Fridays I’ve woken up thinking “it must be Saturday”. Then the next five minutes I continued to lay there convincing myself to get out of bed and get ready for work.
But now its officially the weekend and I’m happy! The best parts of the weekend? I get to spend more time with Joe and I get to sleep in tomorrow!
I think the majority of us would agree that we often hide in our shells things that we don’t want the world to know. Our spouses and/or family may know our hearts, but we don’t let others see the *real* person we are. We’re always “fine”. Things are going “great”. But are they really “fine” and “great”?
Why do we hide? Are we ashamed of our struggles? Do we think we’re the only ones in the world that could possibly be experiencing what we’re going through?
The past few months I’ve really contemplated restarting my blog or if it was a waste of time. Joe finally made mention that he’s thought about writing some, and thats when I thought we should take this journey together. But on this journey, I’ve wanted to be more real, not hide certain things because I was afraid of putting things out there for others to know. And in the midst of all of it, I want others to see how Christ is blessing our lives- both in great times and in the storms.
If you’ve not had a chance to read through the sidebar of IF Etiquette, you may have not realized what “IF” stands for. You may have thought it read “if”. IF stands for infertility. And its a battle than 1 in 10 couples face. A lot of people aren’t educated about infertility, unfortunately, and therefore they don’t understand it. People don’t realize that when a couple has been diagnosed with infertility, it means they’ve been trying (consistently) for at least one year to have a baby or they’ve suffered recurrent miscarriages. Some people can take fertility pills (Clomid or Femara) and get pregnant right away. For a lot of others though, its not that simple. For some people, like us, its YEARS! It takes a lot of time, money, and heartache.
Lets be honest, infertility stinks. Really bad a lot of days. God blessed me/us last year when he took Joe and I from one church and showed us where He wanted us to serve. We had just started into our second year of infertility and I felt that I was all alone in the world. God knew my heart was aching through this battle, so He placed a friend in my life at our new church. Someone who had journeyed the path before and someone I could confide in and seek advice and encouragement from. I am thankful for that!
This YouTube video may give you a great idea of what people who struggle with infertility go through- especially the emotional aspect of it!
The more honest I am with people and the more open I begin to become, I’m realizing that we’re not the only ones out there facing this. Others I know have faced it in the past. And those that have not are learning more about it. Infertility is often a very private journey that people face. We often feel broken and we don’t want people to know that we too suffer from imperfection. But infertility isn’t something we can help. Its a medical problem, just like someone suffering from Crohn’s, Celiac, or yes, even cancer. Our bodies don’t function the way they should or the way we desperately wish they would!
A song thats been pretty powerful and shows the raw emotions of one battling IF is “I Would Die For That” by Kellie Coffey
We know that God has a plan for us, and for our family. God created us. He knows the desires of our hearts.
God makes beautiful things!
If you live in the Raleigh area and love to cook (or even be cooked for), there are a ton of shops and restaurants popping up that are really amazing! Since I enjoy experimenting in the kitchen, I love finding new specialty shops!
Here are a few of my favorite local shops:
If you love fresh spices, this is a must go to spot! The owners, Bob and Cindy, and their niece Lindsay are incredibly friendly and very knowledgable. Their spices are ground fresh each week and their selection is incredible! You can smell and taste the spices before you purchase. Speaking of purchase, their prices are great!
Antonio’s is located in the same shopping center as Savory, and its a must visit too! Antonio’s has a great selection of gourmet foods, an extensive selection of fresh seafood and meats, prepared foods and deserts.
Antonio’s also has these things called Coco Pop Cakes. The regular only has 16 calories per cake and the whole wheat has 20 calories. These things remind me a little of rice cakes, but different and much better tasting. When we visit my parents, we always load up on bags of these to take down to them. They are great plain, in my opinion. But you can also use them as a substitute for chips or bread. Pop cakes are great with pimento cheese, salsa, peanut butter, and other dips.
Cindy from Savory Spice Shop told me about Midtown Olive Press. I’ve visited twice, and only purched one thing, but I love their little shop. And the staff is very helpful. Midtown Olive Press carries a variety of flavored olive oils and balsamic vinegars. I purchased a chocolate balsamic and plan on using it in a coulis or sauce. There is a large variety of savory and sweet flavors to choose from.
I’ve passed The Meat House numerous times and each time I thought it was a restaurant (I couldn’t see where it said “butcher” on it). When we were visiting my mom recently, we passed one in Charlotte. Thats when I figured it out! After looking it up online, I realized that we needed to take a look. I’m glad we did! The butcher was really nice and gave us free samples of beef tips to bring home and cook since it was our first trip in. The Meat House offers a variety of fresh meats, including ostrich (which is really good!), alligator, kangaroo, and kobe beef. The Meat House also carries fresh, local made bread (it smelled great this morning), cheeses (at a very reasonable price), local produce and many other items.
Alphabet soup that is.
We would like to wish everyone a Happy Independence Day! We’re very thankful for our freedom and thankful to those who have fought for us to have that freedom.
We’re also thankful for our freedom in Christ!