Thursday, March 29, 2007

Infertility and the Christian

I am a Christian and I do believe that I’ll be a mother one day. Years back I used to do those “imagine yourself in five, ten, twenty years visualisation exercises” and I ALWAYS saw two kids in my future. So that settles that. LOL

I was listening to a teaching tape the other day by Paul Scanlan on dreams and he said something to the effect that God doesn’t give you a dream just to take it away. He gives us those dreams and He wants you to have it. But with dreams, you have to have a plan.

So I know that the children will happen. It’s the HOW that I’m not so sure about.

The way I see it, it’s either biological children or adopted children. However, biological children can come “naturally” and who knows what that is anymore, or through ART (assisted reproductive techniques – see? I’ve been brushing up on my lingo).

Does it mean that if you do IVF, that you’re not believing God for a child? I mean it’s all biological so what’s the difference. Is there a difference?

I get the feeling that it’s almost like it’s biological children or you’re not in faith and you settled for second best. That’s not how I think – a child is a child. But I also don’t want to miss God. For all I know, we could be perched on the edge of being pregnant.

So while we’re confused we do nothing. And time continues to move on.

How do you know when the plan is to wait and how do you know when the plan means you take action? I’ve never been very patient and yet this is forcing me to be a lot more patient than what I usually am.

(I really don’t expect any of this to make any sense but I needed to get it out of my head and onto paper/ screen)


  1. i'm a christian too and i've herad this argument before from other christians. that if you do invitro or any other assisted method youre not trusting god fully to make that dream come true. i dont agree. i feel that if you can't get pregnant on your own- that god provides other ways to make that happen. if i was unable to conceive i'd totally consider invitro and not think twice about it being wrong.

  2. Jenny Abrenica12:12 am

    Hi! I'm just lurking around. I'm a Christian, too. I've been doing a lot of bible study on this issue. It's all about who's sovereign over our body. Becky said, "If you can't get pregnant on your own . . . " What? Are we now the Creator? I know she wouldn't say that, but think about what her mindset presupposes. The presupposition that we can make a baby ourselves. It doesn't even matter if you and your husband were using contraception the whole time to try to keep from getting pregnant, if He wants to use your womb to create a new life, no contraception will stop Him. I'm sure you've heard of "Oops Babies." That is an insult to God. He didn't say "oops when He made them any more than if the parents weren't using conception.--God decides, we don't. God creates, we don't. Always. That's because our womb is under His sovereign control. Always. Don't suffer under the illusion that ANYTHING you do to your womb is beyond His control. If He wants you and your husband to create a new life in your womb, he can and He will. Do you think if He hasn't yet, it's because the machinery He made is malfunctioning and He needs to outsource the manufacturing process (ART)? No. He knows how to make it work--He's the designer, after all. So what gives? The problem is not with Him, it's with us. We act like God needs our permission to procreate, and then, when we "decide" we're ready, we're upset because He doesn't comply when we tell Him He's supposed to deliver the goods now. The reason we think that way (w/contraception and impatience and ART) is because we have the misconception that we are the ones that make the babies. We're not. Not ever. He creates, not us. He decides, not us. But you know what? Who are we think we can seize God's sovereignty over the womb out of His hands? He also hears our prayers. That is how the godly women in the Bible "dealt" with infertility. They prayed. They humbly petitioned Him. Because they realized it's a matter of God opening and closing the womb. Not a matter of us fixing His malfunctioning equipment.

  3. Hi Leigh,
    I don't know you I just "stummbled" upon your blog by God's sovereign grace. I am sorry to hear that you are not a Mamma yet. I will pray for you, that the Lord would guide you and direct you to His word and to Godly, wise counsel to help bring clarity to your situation. I too am struggling with barreness. Through prayer and a good bit of counsel we are now trying clomid with IUI. In God's sovereignty we will see if He will use this to bring about a child for us. He may never bless me with a child but I know that He is GOOD and He loves His children and cares deeply for His people who struggle living in a fallen creation.
    I will pray for you and your husband. May you grow in Christ and understand the riches found in HIM.

    I don't much like jenny's advice. It lacks Love, spiritual understanding, and wisdom. It's not a very edifiying or encouraging piece.
    Peace to you!
    Alicia <><
    He is worthy!

  4. Laura2:18 am

    Hi ladies,

    My husband and I have been seeking God's will for our family for the last three years. I am 27 and am so desperate to be a mother . . .yes, yes I know that having children or not doesn't define who I am or change my identity in Christ, but it is a deep desire of ours to start a family. We have done Clomid with IUI, have done the Follistim shots, and all to no prevail. We are now struggling with the decision to continue the process with IVF or not. I must say, this is such a hard decision. I know that Christians are split right down the middle on if this kind of ART is acceptable in God's eyes or not. My first and foremost desire is to follow His will for my life. If we do go through with IVF, I would have no intention of ever "disposing" of any excess eggs, etc. So ... the question of are we interfering to much in this process makes me think .. . what about people who use pacemakers? Is that interfering with the heart that God gave them? Are they "opening up His equipment" and interfering with God's ability to heal them if He so choose? I don't know what the answer is .. .but I do know how hurtful insensitive "advice" from people ("Christians") like Jenny can be. I will keep praying for you and hope that God's peace and grace will overwhelm you.

  5. I truly enjoy your blog and am so glad I read it today. This is something my husband and I struggle with DAILY. Where is the line? I don't have an answer...just wanted you to know I understand! It's so good to hear this from someone else who can relate.

  6. Hi Leigh,

    I'm a Christian who battled infertility and sought medical treatment for it. I went through shots, pills, surgeries, IUI's, etc's--all saturated in prayer. We had the exact same questions you have. We studied scripture, sought the advice of Godly counsel, and felt no hesitation in seeking medical help. In fact, there is actually evidence of primitive fertility treatment in the Old Testament! Treatment that is available to infertile women like you and me is available only because God has allowed men to discover it. God and God alone is the giver of life, and a realistic physician will acknowledge that. Through our experience with infertility treatment, God lead us to a wonderful Christian physician. He has been instrumental in the development of our ministry, Sarah's Laughter--Christian Support for Infertility & Child Loss. God has blessed this ministry and allowed us to touch people all over the world, and our doctor has been a vital part.

    God blessed us with a child, and used a physician and medical treatment as a tool to do the work He planned in our lives. The birth of our daughter was prophecied before she was even conceived. Did the fact that she was conceived through medical treatment negate the magnificence of God's plan? Not at all. It is a miracle any time a child is conceived. When a child is conceived "naturally", most Christians can agree that God's hand is present and that He can guide just the right egg and sperm and cause them to unite, but some have decided that when medical intervention is involved that God is absent. Why? I KNOW God determined which egg was matured the month I conceived by IUI. I KNOW God determined which sperm were collected and used in the IUI. I KNOW God determined which would meet and join. I KNOW God gave us our daughter. Just because it happened in a doctor's office has no bearing on those FACTS.

    Is medical intervention God's plan for all infertile couples? Not necessarily. But I do not believe that medical intervention means you've stopped trusting in God's plan. (Remember that one of Jesus' disciples was a physician! Would Jesus' choose a physician to be one of His closest earthly confidants , and never ask him to renounce medicine if He was so against medical intervention?) According to Jeremiah 29:11, He has a plan for you and it's a good one! He'll reveal that plan to you as you need to know it if you'll seek Him for it.

    1. Beth,

      Thank you for this! You are a beautiful woman if God. Your post is what I needed. We've tried many things from fertility treatments to God's word alone. We have considered the fertility treatments again but I've been contemplating if that would make our faith that God has a plan for us invalid just because we are seeking medical assistance in combination to having our faith. Thank you for the support and your testimony.

  7. Beth, thanks so much for commenting on my blog and for your encouragement.

    I think I need to post on infertility and the Christian again. So many months have passed since then and I'm a lot more certain now.

    Tomorrow is egg retrieval - will you pray with us that God starts knitting those cells together?

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