Will you let me be your servant,
let me be as Christ to you?
Pray that I will have the grace to
let you be my servant too.
That Sunday in church, the song I had sung so many times before had new meaning for me.
For much of my life, I had focused on trying to help others, serve others, provide assistance or comfort to others. Never once did I stop to think how hard it might be to accept that help. I didn’t know the grace required.
Adjusting the baby I held in my lap, my gaze swept over the blankets, bottles, and baby paraphernalia strewn across the pew, locking eyes for a moment with my husband. He cradled a baby in his left arm while trying to help pass the third baby from my mom to my dad.
My thoughts returned to the moment I first learned I was pregnant with triplets. Shock initially kept me from understanding the enormity of it.
In time, shock turned to disbelief, then denial, fear, and finally acceptance. Several mornings throughout my pregnancy, I would wake up and pinch myself, not really believing it was happening to me.
Now, with three babies constantly demanding my attention, I longed for the days when I slept long enough to question reality upon waking.
“Are you going to have help?” Many people had asked me this question, and my answer was always the same. “We’ll be fine.” As a very independent and strong-minded person, I was sure I could handle things on my own. My determination was met with skepticism and raised eyebrows.
This hadn’t stopped me. Ignoring my nagging fears, I sought out everything I could find about triplets. I especially looked for those who had managed it themselves, but there weren’t many. The haunted look in the eyes of those who did warned me away from asking further questions. My fears deepened.
As my belly grew, so did my misgivings. When they began to consume me, I had no choice but to turn it over. “It’s too big, Lord,” I told Him. “There’s too much to worry about. I don’t even know all my needs, but I know You do. Help me!” I prayed for a miracle but had no expectations. I simply had to trust.
At thirty-two weeks gestation, my doctor put me in the hospital. During the three weeks I spent there, waiting to meet my children, I learned to let go. I let go of controlling who was at my house, and who saw it at its messiest. I let go of the cleaning, the bills, the daily running of the household. I let go of my all-important career. I learned to say yes when others offered help. I learned to ask for help when I needed it, whether it was a drink of water or a wheelchair ride outside for some fresh air. I even learned to accept that help graciously, without resentment or pride.
But that was only the beginning. When my babies were born, it was days before I could hold them. I had to trust the doctors and nurses to help them when I couldn’t. I had to trust them three days later as my husband drove me home from the hospital, tears streaming down my cheeks as I left my babies behind.
When my babies were finally strong enough to leave the hospital, my joy was intermingled with terror. How could I handle this? But God is good, and He answered my cry.
As God sent us angel after angel, I had to open my door and my heart. To the large group of family members who shared our experience of finally welcoming our children into our home, to the delivered meals and baby-holding volunteers.
And then, He sent us our miracle – a triplet nanny, in between jobs and needing something to do in the weeks before her own granddaughter was born. For seven weeks, she lived with us, helping us hold and love and rock our children. Knowing we had no means to pay her, she asked only for a room to live in while she stayed.
Sitting and singing with my newly expanded family in church, I remembered and thanked God for each of these tremendous blessings. I thanked Him for teaching me that sometimes the best gift is graciously allowing others to give to you.
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