Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Latest Issue of Stepping Stones - Hope Lifts Us Up

I just received the most recent issue of the Stepping Stones newsletter. Stepping Stones is a ministry of Bethany Christian Services whose mission is to support Christian couples facing infertility and/or pregnancy loss. They publish a newsletter which is sent out six times a year, 4 by mail and twice by email. It has been a tremendous blessing and encouragement to me. If you are struggling with infertility and/or pregnancy loss and have not already signed up to receive it, I would encourage you to do so by going here.

The latest issue has an article entitled "Hope Lifts Us Up" by Kat Smith. She writes about how walking the difficult road of infertility has caused her to question hope and the difficulty of understanding verses like Rom 5:5 which says "hope does not disappoint" when each month a cycle of hope and despair is repeated. She goes on to write of her experience walking through Hallmark, and I am guessing many of you will relate to this, I know I do, and seeing the Willow Tree figurines and then looking away. They are such a painful reminder of what we don't yet have. But then she sees one called "Hope Lifts Us Up" and can't stop thinking about it. The thing is hope is confusing to her, it almost seems like she plays a game with hope each month, and so she continues to pray about it. She thinks about asking her husband to buy her this particular figurine because it brought peace to her. But without knowing any of this, her sister ends up giving her this exact figurine. This reminded her that God hears her and says to her, "Hold onto Hope." He had not forgotten her.

And He has not forgotten us.

Back in December I had to attend a briefing with my boss. Afterward we went to lunch, but the restaurant we chose was not yet open. So we popped into one of those quaint little stores with all kinds of knick knacks. And of course they had Willow Tree figurines. I glanced at them and was about to look away when I saw one with a little boy holding a balloon that said "hope." I could not help but pick it up to admire it. Fast forward to after Christmas when my boss returns from her Christmas vacation and presents me with a beautifully wrapped box. I open it and what is inside but the Willow Tree figurine called "Hope Lifts Us Up" that I had admired:

I have it displayed on my bookshelf in my living room to remind me to keep hoping. I love that the little boy is looking up toward heaven because that is where we find "hope that does not disappoint." We find it in the One who knows the plans He has for us (Jer 29:11), whose will is good, pleasing, and perfect (Rom 12:2), who will fulfill all His purposes for us (Psalm 138:8), and is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine (Eph 3:20).

I asked John the other day if he thought it was okay to get excited about the adoption and if it was okay to dream about names and nursery themes. He said yes :) I think I just needed his reassurance.

And so I am. I am hoping. I am dreaming. We are meant to hope.


Stacy said...

Love this!!

Anonymous said...

Yes, the organization I found was Holt International. It was a fluke that I even asked them knowing the restriction. I asked them if it could be waived for Waiting Children and she told me there was no BMI req. for either standard/Healthy or Waiting children program for them. Are you just doing the Standard infant program?

Anonymous said...

Is your agency from Holt then? I also get Bethany's Stepping Stones Newsletter.

Lisa said...

I haven't gotten my Stepping Stones yet but I look forward to getting it to read this article specifically. Thanks for sharing...and I kinda want one of those figurines now! :)

Hannah said...

This is a beautiful post! I've usually been so hopeful, but not the past few days. So thank you for this! And hey, Bethany Christian Services is the adoption agency I've been checking out. Have you heard other good things about them?

Stacey said...

So sweet, Becky. I love this. And I couldn't be happier that you're allowing yourself to dream and to hope! Beautiful.

Love ya!

Anonymous said...

I tried to send you a email via the email you have listed on your blog and it bounced back. Could we connect through email? My email is

DeniFay said...

Beautiful post!!! Thank you so much as my Hope has been a bit low today & I needed this perfect reminder!!! Definately, hope, dream, plan, prepare!!! I had an adoptive mom tell me to start getting ready, start buying packs of diapers, wipes, looking at furniture (she did her whole nursery b/f they had a baby coming), talk about names (you may be surprised how hard it is to agree)!!! I know of a couple that's waiting on a baby girl from China, it's been 3 years & she's had a name all this time, they said they know God has her for them & when it's His perfect time SHE will come home to them!! Love that story (& the fact that they had a domestic adoption go through while they were waiting)!!! Plus, I've heard of sooo many people who end up with a baby quicky, not that the process is quick or that they get picked quickly, but they end up getting picked by someone 8+ months along, then BAM! Baby!!

Praying for your joy & hope through this process, so glad I found your blog!!