As I write this, it’s the last few minutes of the first day of the new year, and I’m quietly reflecting on the 365 days we’ve recently completed and the next 365 days to come.
There’s a verse that has been on my mind lately, one that has come up time and time again the past few months in various circumstances and from various people. It’s a verse that feels like it’s alive to me, speaking directly to me in this season of life.
Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder the things of the past. Behold, I will do something new, now it will spring forth; will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.
Isaiah 43:18-19 NASB
Have you ever had a time in your life where the same theme kept popping up everywhere you looked? That’s what it has been like with this verse.
The idea of the Lord doing “something new” has felt particularly appropriate lately, as I’ve been spending the last few months in a transition season between our old LA home and our new life in San Diego. I left my two nursing positions in Los Angeles and have been immersed in the world of house hunting and real estate agents in a city where I don’t know anyone- so this is a season of obvious “new” for us.
Beyond a new city and new home, the idea of God doing something new was particularly appealing to me going into our FET cycle in November. Andrew and I have been fighting the same battle to grow our family for four years now. Something “new” like a positive pregnancy test, a viable baby, an opportunity to be parents sounds pretty darn good to us right about now.
This verse was a point of faith and hope for me as I would pray for our November transfer. I thanked God for the life inside me and thanked Him that He was doing something new in us. It seemed like a give-in that this would the chance for things to change. Everywhere we looked God was telling us He was doing something “new” and I thought that I knew exactly what that meant- new city, new home, new babies.
I was pretty convinced that this was the time that our ongoing fight was coming to an end, so the call from our nurse that told us that our cycle wasn’t going to bring us a viable pregnancy was quite the letdown (to put it mildly) and a total shock.
In my stunned confusion I wondered out loud, “Lord, this does not feel like something new, this feels like more of the same heartache I’ve been dealing with for years now.”
I’ve already dealt with disappointment, lost embryos, and pregnancy that didn’t last. I’ve already dealt with grief and confusion. I don’t want more of the same.
And yet, the experience of this disappointment, truly wasn’t more of the same. It actually did bring me something new.
Where I normally feel intense turmoil after a failed cycle, I am at peace.
Where I normally feel alone, I am supported.
Where I normally feel abandoned in my own pain, I sense God’s presence as a comfort to me.
And where I normally feel despair, I hold a true hope.
The outcome of the cycle wasn’t new, but my experience in it was. (I credit a lot of that to the way I approached this last cycle, which you can read about here. I’m so thankful for the wise people in my life who encouraged me in this approach.)
The fact that the outcome could be the same, but my experience in it could be so different, brings me a new hope for this season.
Some days I find myself bemoaning the fact that I am (yet again) starting over in a new city while fighting the same battle I’ve been fighting for years. Unfortunately it’s not the first– or second time I’ve moved to a new city in the aftermath of a disappointing cycle. In those moments I feel a little foolish- why did I think that this season would be any different? Was it so naive of me to get my hopes up and believe this could be my time, that it would finally be my turn?
And then I remember-this season has already proven to be the start of something new. I don’t know what it looks like practically yet, but I know what it feels like. It feels like peace and calm. It feels like giving up my limiting beliefs that hold me down and embracing a new level of freedom and faith. It feels like less striving, less spinning my wheels working as hard as I can- and more confidence in the fact that my story isn’t over yet.
I don’t know what life will look like at the end of 2018, but I know it won’t be the same as it is today. God is doing something new.