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TITLE: I believe
By michelle Hays

A barren family recieves her child through faith.
As I sit in my favorite room of the house, I am filled with memories. I am in my daughters nursery, rocking as I wait for Katy to doze off. There is a pink, stuffed puppy on the table next to me and it takes me back in time.

Four years ago, my husband and I moved to Mexico as missionaries. With college finished and a more permanent living situation, we felt ready to have children. We had already enjoyed two years of marriage and wanted to move on to the next stage in our lives. I quit taking the birth control pill and waited.

And waited.... and waited... and waited...

I cant describe the pain a woman feels as she measures her time in montly increments. With the pass of each cycle comes the heartache of a hope deferred. The months, turning into years, the years turning into "what if's..." This was my life for three years. I did not want to see a doctor. I didn't want to hear it. I didn't want to be infertile. I wanted a child, to feel my abdomen expand with a new life within me. Instead, I was empty and longing. But I believe in God.

Watching my friends get pregnant made it hard for me not to feel like I was getting left behind or forgotten. "God, I want a baby!" One day, as I bitterly complained to God, I felt His voice within me-

"You will have a child, one that already has formed in my mind."

I would, and I knew it. It didnt matter if it was this year or in ten more. I believed. So I prepared myself to become a mother. I learned all that I could, realizing that my role as a mother would be to raise up my children so that they can soar high in their destiy. Knowing that one day they would have to fly away and make their own path, guided with the life lessons I taught them.

One morning, I was reading a story in the bible. It was about a rich woman who had everything but was barren. She made a special appartment in her house for a prophet of God, so that when he passed from city to city, he could stop and rest. After a while, this prophet wanted to bless her.

"What do you want," the prophet asked

"Nothing, I have all I need." The woman replied.

"I see you do not have children. By this season in the following year, you will have a child in your arms."

She begged him not to mock her or to give her false hopes. He assured her this would come to pass, and so it did. What touched me so much about this story was that the woman said that she had everything she needed. She was complete. Thats what I wanted, to be complete. Not missing a piece, but complete in my heart. My children would leave me one day and would not need me to cling to them as if I could not go on without them. This process begins before they are concieved. In the end, it would only be me and God. I wanted to be complete in Him. That morning I made a prayer in the secret of my heart.

"If I was asked if I needed anything, I wish to reply that I am complete in all that YOU have given me."

A few hours later, I was at a special church event. It was a yearly conference. A young man came up to me...trembling. He couldnt speak for a while. He said he feared what he had to say. Finally, his words came:

"Just like the story of the woman who housed the prophet and wanted nothing in return, God has seen you serve in this field. The same way it was told to her then, it is told to you today, by this time next year, you will hold your child in your arms."

I was shaken to the core. The only one who knew about my prayer was God. I had prayed silently in my head. A few days later Isaac and I went to the doctor for a check up. The results were devastating. We had major fertility problems and had to undergo surgery for a chance at concieving. I was crushed. Still, I believed. We would schedule surgery as soon as we could afford it.

A week after the ugly news, I watied for the usual monthly visit that was to come, reminding me that I was still barren. One day late? Two days late? A week late? Feeling week and tired, I took a home pregnancy test for the hundredth time in my life. I couldnt believe my eyes. Trembling, shaking, crying and laughing all at the same time-


Nine months later I sat on my hospital bed, holding a healthy, beautiful little girl. She looked like me. Like me! I stared at her in wonder. Indescribable is the feeling of a woman turned into mother. Indescribable is the feeling of a seven pound bundle cradled in your arms looking into your eyes. Indescribable.

Visitors came and went, bringing lots of presents. One of them- a pink blanket and a pink stuffed puppy, the one sitting next to me as I type.

Back in the church, things were very busy. It was time again for that yearly conference. We had gone full circle around the year. Just like it was told to me... by this time, next year, you will hold your child in your arms.

I believe.
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