As I’ve blogged through the chapters of Surrendering to Hope: A Guide for the Broken, I’m reminded that there are many kinds of struggle and pain that Christians go through. As we enter chapter seven we have explored themes of the loss of an infant, murder, racism, same sex attraction and how each of these people of faith have found hope in Christ in spite of the pain they suffered. Chris and Leisa are no different … but their pain is different from any that has been expressed so far.
“We married in our thirties. … If God gave us children, that would be wonderful. If not, we could accept it. Two years into married life, we were thrilled to learn we were expecting our first child. We built many hopes and dreams on that news…”
In spite of the enthusiasm the Kinnins experienced at the thought of having a child together, it was not to be. The miscarriage led to doctor visits, searches for reasons why, and ultimately there were no medical answers. And there were no more pregnancies. Leisa shared,
“We continued to pray and kept trying. We experienced the monthly roller coaster of emotions that so many couples live with for years and years. Nothing. No pregnancy. Only disappointment. So much of that time was characterized by silent, hidden sadness.”
This made it hard to rejoice when others experienced new life in their families. Both Chris and Leisa expressed concern for how to support one another during these trying circumstances. Though they considered IVF and attempted adoption (even when it was approved and seemed to be an answer to prayer, it fell through several times).
I know there may be someone reading this who can identify with Chris and Leisa’s struggle with faith and the pain they felt. I hope you will get a copy of the book to read this chapter. As Chris and Leisa take turns sharing from their own experience one can see the sorrow and hurt they felt, as well as the faith and hope.
Among the many valuable things they shared, I thought this was so important:
“Many of the ways God led us through the desert of grief and loss can only be seen in hindsight. We were blind to God’s working at the time, and we still are today as God continues to use this for divine glory and our refinement. There were many days when we couldn’t even pray about it.”
One answer from God was the way he used them as mentors to young adults at their church. Because of their situation they had freedoms of time and opportunity to connect that busy parents of children wouldn’t likely have. “We began sharing our home and our lives with the future of our church.” Listen to this testimony:
“In some ways, and by God’s grace, we parented those precious souls without the diapers or teenage curfew battles. We became their family and walked beside them as they began their adult lives.”
There is much more in the chapter to this incredible testimony. It doesn’t deny their lament and it doesn’t deny God’s provision. Thank you, Chris and Leisa, for tenderly and courageously sharing this journey with the readers of this book. I know it will bless many who will walk in those same paths.
In the next post we will explore the chapter written by a lady who lived through the terror of being married to a narcissistic personality disorder. Though it appeared to be hopeless, she did turn to God and found she could surrender to hope and find a way out.
It’s true. Out here, hope remains. Thanks for reading. John