Tag: A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility

Elisha Kearns’ Thoughts About “A Seed of Hope” Fertility Devotional

A Seed of Hope - Elisha KearnsElisha Kearns has been a God-send to me. During her struggle with infertility, she has encouraged me many times about how my book, A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility, has helped her.  Elisha is a blogger and speaker who shares from her heart. It’s as if she were sitting right across from you, giving you loving encouragement in the midst of your struggle. You can find her at www.WaitingForBabyBird.com.

Earlier this year, I thought it was time to do a few updates to A Seed of Hope;it has recently been revised. Also, it now includes questions at the end of each of the 60 daily devotions. These questions are great for individual reflection or for fertility support groups to study. I’m pleased to let you know that Elisha graciously agreed to write the Foreword for the revised edition of A Seed of Hope.

A Seed of Hope Foreword

Here is what she shares in the book:

I am not sure if you are new to infertility or if you have been traveling this journey for months or even years, but I think we can all agree no matter the time spent on this unexpected path to parenthood that it is tough.  Really tough.  When I began walking this bumpy road filled with sharp turns and potholes, I wasn’t prepared. Were you?

I thought infertility was simply the inability to conceive after one year of actively trying. And rightfully so, because isn’t that the definition? But ask me now, nearly six years after leaving my doctor’s office numb and confused, then going through several failed treatment cycles and a miscarriage, and I will quickly tell you that the definition Google search gave me years ago is not even close to being accurate, and maybe you feel the same. Infertility, when you break it down, is somuch more than just the inability to conceive.

I have learned it is also a series of losses that you are forced to grieve month after month. It’s almost like a grave that keeps following you around as it grabs your hope and buries more and more of your dreams with each failed cycle. It’s a fierce battle between your faith and your circumstances. A battle you must fight to win every day. And a battle that is exhausting. But sweet friend, while I have learned so much about infertility through my experiences, I have also learned what it is not. And it is not going to win.

In 2012 after my last failed treatment cycle using In Vitro-Fertilization (IVF), I found myself falling further into a sea of despair thinking God had forgotten me. I couldn’t figure out what I had done to deserve this form of punishment and this type of shame. Every day, I felt as though I was trying to scoop the water out of my sinking ship with a small Dixie cup, only to keep watching the water come pouring back in.

My Search for Relief

It wasn’t until during one of my late night internet searches in which I was looking for something, anything that could give me relief from the intense pain my heart and soul was experiencing that I found her; I found Evangeline and her book, A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises for Fertility. And friend, once it was in my hands just a few short days later, I couldn’t put it down. Each entry was a breath of spiritual fresh air as her words brought life to the parts of me that were dry and wounded.

I found her personal struggle and unwavering faith in God to be the powerful inspiration I needed in my time of weakness. Her daily dose of encouragement helped me shake off the lies of the enemy so that I could stand firm and live my day faithfully with a hope-filled focus. A focus that has continued to enable me to believe in the Truth that victory over childlessness, no matter the diagnosis or cause, can be mine— and even yours.

It is my prayer and strong belief that as you dedicate each day to reading this 60-day devotional, as well as put to practice the undeniable tool of speaking God’s word over your situation as Evangeline teaches you to do, that you will begin to feel your hope supernaturally rise to a new level. You will begin to see yourself with the victory, rather than without. I also believe that you will begin to feel stronger in your faith, as well as empowered to know that while infertility is what it is— heartbreaking…dream shattering…soul crushing and faith breaking…you will also begin to know deep down within your spirit what it is not. You will know that because of the power of Jesus, it is not going to win.

Use This Tool

So grab a pen, a cute journal and marinate yourself with the Spirit-filled words of this book. Let it be a tool that helps you no longer see your situation through your eyes, but rather through His. You are a victor through Him, and victory over sickness and disease can be yours.

Thank you, Evangeline, for pouring out your heart and spreading God’s Truth to a community of men and women struggling to conceive. Your dedication to the Lord years ago saved me from turning away from my faith. My hope and prayer today is that through your revised edition, it will continue to help save others who are like I once was— trying to scoop water out of their boat with a small Dixie cup.

May God bless each of you reading these words with the deepest desires of your heart.

Elisha Kearns

Author of the faith-based nationally known blog, Waiting for Baby Bird

You Are a Victor!

If you’re struggling with infertility and you desire Scripture-based encouragement, get your copy of the revised edition of A Seed of Hope at www.BooksByEvangeline.com. It will help you see more clearly that you are indeed already a victor in Christ– even over infertility!

Why Feeling Hopeless is NOT Where You Want to Stay – INFOGRAPHIC

Feeling hopeless

Did You Know There’s a SPIRITUAL Aspect of Infertility? #NIAW

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week. Are you aware that there’s a spiritual experience associated with infertility?

Many people ignore the spiritual aspect of infertility.

It is so easy to lose focus on the spiritual nature of infertility when the physical aspect consumes your thought life and begins to overtake your daily life. You and your spouse can become so obsessed with finding the cause and the cure for your situation that it can rob you of your peace. When you’re not experiencing peace, you’re likely to ignore the one thing that can bring about the solution you’re looking for.

Spiritual Unrest

Some studies have shown that the degree of severity of a physical disease is often related to the degree of emotional and spiritual unrest being experienced by the patient. That unrest must be addressed. This is why it is important to strengthen yourself spiritually while dealing with infertility. Acknowledge the need to ask God for wisdom when faced with overcoming the enemy called “Infertility.” It may seem like a Goliath-sized enemy to you, but for God, “Infertility” is already a defeated foe because of what Jesus accomplished through His death and resurrection.

Infertility is not too hard for God to break or destroy. God said so when he defeated infertility in Sarah’s life:

“Is anything too hard for the Lord?” ~Genesis 18:14

The story of each woman in the Bible that struggled with infertility ended with her becoming an overcomer and giving birth, no matter her age, socio-economic status, or how long she had been infertile.

Stay WITH God

Luke 18:27 shows that Jesus said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible WITH God” (emphasis mine). That preposition, “with,” is an important word because it means “in close proximity to”.  You can come close and join yourself WITH Him by asking Him for help and for wisdom in the decisions you make, by reading His word, and by speaking and meditating His Word.

Even if you feel as if God has turned his back on you and no longer hears your prayers, look to Him. When is seems like God is ignoring you (He’s not), look to Him. Even though things haven’t changed after you’ve begged, cried, and pleaded in your prayers, look to Him. And yes, when you find yourself thinking, “I’ve had enough of this. Let’s just throw in the towel and give up,” look to Him. Why? Because the bottom line is, He has never left your side. He loves you immensely and wants His best to be demonstrated in your life. You have an enemy but it is not God, it’s Satan. Jesus is the One who has the power to eradicate this issue and He desires to do so. He needs you to know that He is there with you, standing with you in the face of this enemy. Then you can have faith that He always keeps His promises.

Make a Decision

Make a decision to consistently address the spiritual aspect of infertility.  It will make a positive difference! Trust that God’s Word is true for you. Keep your focus on His promises of fertility. Ask for a fresh revelation of His love for you. It will bring you guidance, comfort, and ultimately, greater peace.

“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You: because he trusts in You.”
~ Isaiah 26:3

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you: but not as the world gives… Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” ~ John 14:27


Find more direction about how to spiritually address infertility… check out my fertility devotional, A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility.

spiritual aspect of infertility-A Seed of Hope

borrowed hope

She Got Through It By Living On Borrowed Hope — You Can Too

Have you ever borrowed anything from a friend because you had completely run out of that item? It’s nice to know that when you’re in a pinch, someone is kind enough to share what they have to make up for what you don’t.

Amazingly, if you feel like you have completely run out of hope, you can borrow some of it too! That’s what a friend did as she struggled with infertility. You can read a portion of her story of victory here.

What I’d like to share about her story that you won’t read in her blog is something she recently said to me while we attended an event. She told me that before she met me, she had been reading my Bible reading plan about fertility on YouVersion. It had been a source of hope for her during a dark time in her life. She considered it a source of “borrowed hope” because she had simply run out it. She didn’t want desperation and bitterness to overtake her. As a believer in Christ, she knew she had to keep hope alive within her… somehow. Borrowing hope from the Biblical accounts of those 8 women in my reading plan helped her maintain hope until she eventually experienced victory and gave birth to a son.

Seeing how others experience victory should prompt us to feel hopeful, not envious or pitiful. When we make a decision to celebrate the victory of others…when we remain determined to have a positive mindset…when we choose to believe that what God has done for others He will do for us… we can live life hope-filled.

Borrowed hope from the victorious experiences of others may be what you need in order to get through the struggle. Or maybe their experiences can serve to boost the hope you’ve forced yourself to maintain.

Either way, today, make the choice to rest in knowing that God loves you and ALWAYS keep His promises.

It’ll make the struggle easier.

overcoming infertility

Overcoming Infertility: A Real-Life Story (Part 2)

Amanda is a 21st century overcomer. Last week, many of you were so excited by her story of overcoming infertility that you couldn’t wait to read “the rest of the story.” Well here it is! 🙂  And in case you missed Part 1, you can read it HERE.

I know her experience in coming out of the season of infertility will encourage you!


Overcoming Infertility: Amanda’s Story (Part 2)

I had the opportunity to attend a fertility retreat hosted by Evangeline and meet her in person. I had been trying to figure out the scripture from Exodus 23:25-26 for months by the time I attended. The part I got stuck on was, “You shall serve only the Lord.” I felt like I was already serving “only” the Lord, so then why did the promise of “no miscarriages”, not apply to me? Evangeline shared a picture that hit at the truth. She said, “you have truths in your head that you read or hear and believe, but they don’t connect with your heart and thus don’t “feel” real. But the thing between your head and your heart is your mouth. You’ve got to speak His promises.”

Speak God’s Promises of Fertility

God wants us to partner with Him. That’s why He gives us promises that belong to us because of what Jesus did for us, but He wants us to own them by speaking them. Equally true, we can speak lies that feed our hearts as well. I started this journey by speaking over myself the lie that “I’d be better off not being a mom, because I’d screw them up” and later agreed with the lie that I had “bad eggs.” To answer my above question, the truth was I probably wasn’t serving “only” the Lord, because I was doing things (seeking answers) in my own power, but more importantly I wasn’t standing on His truth. There were things that I knew about His character, His love, His plans, His timing, but didn’t “feel” them as real and thus I turned to worldly science instead of Him.

For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. ~2 Corinthians 1:20

If He has made a promise, His answer is “Yes” in Christ, but we have to agree. God has promised us our hearts desires if we take delight in Him (Psalm 37:4). What better way to do that than to agree with Him? If you haven’t already, look at the number of times that God promised that we won’t be barren and the number of women throughout history who stood on these promises and overcame infertility. It is truly amazing!

Armed with New Weapons for Overcoming Infertility

I left the retreat with a new arsenal of weapons to use against the enemy. I started seeking out God’s promises and speaking them over my life. Instead of questioning Exodus, I just started declaring that the promise of no miscarriages was for me. I fired the infertility clinic and found a new believing doctor that heard my story and the first thing he said was “well it looks like we’re getting closer each time”, a shockingly hopeful statement. I took a full-time job, because I figured based on my previous track record, it would be a while before I got pregnant. God had different plans.

The Blessing Manifested

I tested positive at the beginning part of August 2014 and fear set in hard. It’s easier to speak out truth than it is to walk it out and I entered into a full on war with the devil. I stood on Exodus, shaking, tears flowing down my blubbering face on more than one occasion. We held off on blood work and ultrasounds until 9 weeks, because we didn’t want any “fact” to interfere with God’s truth. If there was going to be life, there would be evidence without doubt by 9 weeks. That was the longest 5 weeks of my life, but on September 10, 2014, there was a beautifully strong, pounding heart beat and a little bean with nubs wiggling away on the screen. Four weeks later he had grown full arms, legs, hands, fingers, feet and toes and the reality finally kicked in, this was my promise. On April 13, 2015, Samuel David Roberts was born  8 lb.-11 oz and 21 inches long.

He has since blossomed into a gentle, joyful, and BIG boy. He just turned one, is weighing almost 30 pounds, and is just shy of 3 ft. tall.

He is amazing. My husband and I are repeatedly lost for words about how awesome he is. He gives us a reason to be thankful every single day and now we get to be thankful for his sister who is due in September. 🙂

Overcoming infertility-Amanda's ultrasound
Evangeline’s reaction: “Baby Girl looks like she’s being cradled in Jesus’ hands!”

Final Thoughts of Encouragement

I’ll leave you with this: I know the choke hold that the lie of infertility can have on your faith, your trust, and your ability to fight. I know there are times when you think there is no fight left, but if I can encourage you with one thing, it is that God knows and He’s not done! The enemy might get to have this season for a time, but if you have a desire to be a mother, God gave it to you and He has a plan to make it a reality. Stand on and speak this truth over your life!

Many blessings to a home filled with the pounding of little feet and squeals of laughter throughout.

Overcoming infertility-family pictureWith Love-

Chris, Amanda, Samuel and Baby girl Roberts

 


Overcoming infertility is possible! For more encouragement so that you can stand on God’s promises, read
A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility

Overcoming infertility-A Seed of Hope

What Truth Do You Believe About Overcoming Fertility?

What do you believe about overcoming fertility? It’s so easy to believe the negative reports about infertility. We humans are trained through our normal, everyday situations to focus on and remember the negative circumstances of life. But what if there were powerful reasons to believe something radically different from the medical reports and the advice/counsel you get from friends and family?

 Believe His Promises

Would you believe?

Here are three powerful reasons to believe that you are already blessed and empowered to overcome infertility:

  1. God said none will be barren/infertile, not male or female.
    • “You will be blessed more than any other people; none of your men or women will be childless.” Deuteronomy 7:14 NIV
  2. God said ALL things are possible with Him  and impossible without Him.
    • “For nothing is impossible with God. Luke 1:37 NLT
    • I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5 NIV
  3. God said He is always with you and His Spirit bears witness to the Truth (Truth=what God has said). His Word is truth.
    •  “And Jesus Christ was revealed as God’s Son by his baptism in water and by shedding his blood on the cross–not by water only, but by water and blood. And the Spirit, who is truth, confirms it with his testimony.” 1John 5:6 NLT
    • “Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth.” John 17:17 NLT

Be assured that no word from God will ever fail or be void of power (Luke 1:37 NIV and ASV). We’re also told in 1 Kings 8:56 that “not one word has failed of all the wonderful promises He gave.”

Will you believe that His promises of fertility are your truth?

 

Affirmations You Should Be Saying

affirmations of trust

Affirmations are a powerful way to express trust.

Sometimes it’s hard to trust and be in agreement with the plans of someone else regarding the impact of their plans for YOUR life. If someone asked you whether you agree with whatever God has said and planned about your situation, what would be your response? Would you express sincere confidence in His plans for you? Your victory depends on trusting His Word and being in agreement with what He has said.

King David of the Bible can be our example of how to be in agreement with God. David, a man who so openly loved and trusted God, knew the power of speaking the Word of God. He said in Psalm 17:4,

“…By the word of Your lips, I have kept away from the paths of the destroyer.”

Similarly, affirmations that you speak should be crafted using Scripture.

Affirm the Word of God by speaking it into your life. Doing so will help keep you off of Satan’s paths that are lined with his burdens and devices of deception.  Most importantly, speaking the Word helps you to keep your eyes and mind on Jesus’ love for you. This enables you to agree with His plans and receive the victory over infertility or any other challenge you face.

Stay encouraged!

 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

3 Things to Do About Perpetual Pain

PainThe pain of infertility can be excruciating. As I stated in my book, A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility, I found the pain of infertility to be worse than the pain of birthing a long-awaited baby via vaginal delivery! For some of you, infertility seems to be perpetual. It’s something you’ve lived with for so long and you don’t see the end in sight. The pain of it never fully goes away and is influenced by what (babies) and who (pregnant friends) you see daily. Well, I want to encourage you with something that you may not have considered before.

Yesterday, during my morning quiet time, I was looking for a scripture about healing and came across Jeremiah 15:15-20. This passage turned my quiet time an eye-opening and exciting experience in the Word! The scripture is not one that directly addresses infertility but it definitely can be applied to it. That’s what I love about God’s Word– it is so organic, malleable, and powerful. It’s able to bring LIFE to any situation we’re facing.

In this passage, Jeremiah is complaining to God about how long he has had to face an enemy, seemingly without any help from God. He even accuses God of failing him in his time of need. Sound familiar? But guess what God’s response was to Jeremiah… “Trust Me.” I know that seems like such an extraneous instruction, one that we hear often, especially when we don’t understand what God is doing. But trusting His faithfulness is the golden ticket to what ever we need from Him. No effort is required on our part. He simply wants us to trust that He loves us and will deliver us.

This particular passage of Scripture is best digested as a combination of various translations. Below, I’ve paraphrased the verses from a few different Bible versions. I hope they open your eyes to what God  has to say about perpetual pain in our lives.

[Jeremiah says] You know where I am, God! You know, understand, and care for me. Remember what I’m doing here! Visit me and avenge me. Take my side against this enemy of mine. Don’t stand back while it ruins me. Just look at the abuse I’m taking! Don’t let my joy slip away while I wait on You.

When I found Your words, I devoured them. Your words made me glad. Your words are what sustain me; they are food to my hungry soul. They bring joy to my sorrowing heart and delight me. How proud I am to bear your name, O Lord. 

Yet, You have failed me in my time of need! You have let this issue continue far too long. Why is my pain perpetual and my wound incurable, refusing to be healed? Will this never stop hurting me? You are like a deceitful brook, like waters that fail and are uncertain. Your help seems like a seasonal mountain brook—sometimes a flood, sometimes as dry as a bone.  

The Lord replied:

“Stop this foolishness and talk some sense! Return to trusting Me. If you return and give up this mistaken tone of distrust and despair, then I will give you again a settled place of quiet and safety. And if you cleanse your own heart from unworthy and unwarranted suspicions concerning My faithfulness, I will make you like a fortified, bronze wall— strong and impenetrable by troubles. Speak worthy, not worthless, words! You are to influence those troubles by speaking to them; by speaking what I have said.  Do not remain silent and thereby let troubles influence you. They will fight against you, but they will not prevail over you, for I am with you to save and deliver you.”

[Paraphrased from Message, Amplified, Living, and NIV Bibles]

Here are three things that I gleaned from this passage that you can implement in dealing with perpetual pain:

  1. Make a decision to trust God, no matter what. Get rid of the attitudes and words of distrust and despair. (Philippians 4:6-8)
  2. Determine to view God as always being faithful. As a friend once told me, being faithful means you always say “Yes.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
  3. Choose to ensure your conversations with others reflect what God has said about your deliverance. Speak worthy, not worthless, words! (Proverbs 4:20-22)

Now that you’ve read how God corrected and encouraged Jeremiah about his pain (and gave him hope!), what will you do to address the pain you’re experiencing today? I’d love to hear from you. Leave me a note about what you’ll do!

 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Mother’s Day and Infertility

mother's day infertilityMother’s Day and infertility–they just don’t seem to go together. If you’re in the throes of infertility, is this a difficult time for you?

I remember some years ago when I dreaded Mother’s Day because I was struggling with infertility and it was difficult to get through that Day without feeling inadequate. Despite all the “trying” my husband and I had been doing, nothing was working and I felt like so out-of-place on that Day.

I wanted to experience pregnancy and it seemed that I couldn’t.

I wanted to watch my tummy grow and it seemed like that could very possibly be impossible.

I wanted to feel the baby kicking and moving inside of me and it seemed that I wouldn’t.

“We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope.”

~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

With infertility, the finite disappointment rolls around on a monthly basis, but don’t allow it to make you lose hope in Jesus’ for love you. Don’t let the doctor’s diagnosis make you lose hope for having a child. There’s a spiritual enemy, the devil, that would love for you to give up on Jesus–don’t let him win. Hope is what gets us through the tough times. I overcame infertility because I did not lose hope…I did not give up on God promises.

Reinforce your hope this week by digging more deeply into God’s promises of fertility. Let them give you courage to rest in His unfailing integrity, His covenantal willingness, and His omnipotent strength. Placing our hope in Jesus is the only sure thing. He desires to be our anchor, especially in times of raging storms.

“We have this HOPE as an anchor for the soul.” ~ Hebrews 6:19

Stay in the Word this week…allow Jesus’ love to speak to you through it. Need some suggestions for some applicable verses to read? Check out the appendix in my fertility devotional, A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility for lots of encouraging passages.

How will you cope with Mother’s Day 2015? Please share with us your ways of maintaining hope!

 

Image courtesy of 89studio | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

5 Secrets for Maintaining Hope When You Feel Like Giving Up

Evangeline Colbert - Hope in Hard Places

Here are some thoughts about hope that I shared over a year ago at In Due Time. If you’re about to give up because you’re feeling stuck in a difficult situation, I think this will help:

I know what the pressure of infertility feels like. It’s as if it completely surrounds you, pressuring you to give up, to not see any advantage in continuing to hope. In the midst of infertility, life can feel like you’re always stuck between a rock and a hard place. It seems like not much is working out in your favor. Every day seems as if infertility colors how you view life. It looms over every aspect of your life, clouding your vision so it’s hard to see anything good that’s on the horizon.

But I’m glad to share with you that in that place of feeling stuck, hope can shake things up, freeing you to enjoy life!

Here are 5 secrets that I’ve found to be powerful in nurturing and maintaining hope as you look to come out of this struggle with infertility.

  1. Believe God loves you. His love is a “no matter what” kind of love. No matter what you’ve done/thought/said, He loves you with an unfailing and unending love.
  2. Decide to not give up. Don’t underestimate the power of a decision!
  3. Remember the previous times, big or small, when God has come through for you. Encourage yourself.Think about those successes and the joy you experienced.
  4. On a daily basis, affirm the promise of God that relates to your situation by speaking the Word out loud. Instead of focusing on medical facts, allow God’s Word to be your point of focus and become your truth.
  5. Greet each morning with gratitude for the gift of a new day. This helps set a positive tone for the day ahead of you. Thankfulness has a way of shifting our attitude, choices, and behavior.

Hope established upon Jesus’ love never disappoints.

Hope is one of the three things that 1 Corinthians 13:13 tells us will always remain as a resource that allows us to tap into God’s grace. We are to always have hope—the joyful and confident expectation of God coming through for us!

Allow hope to shake things up in your life so that you experience the freedom to confidently expect good things from a very good Father.


An Affirmation for You: God loves me and desires for me to experience only His goodness. I rest in His love for me. I choose to allow His desires for my life to be my desires. I maintain my hope in God!


When you’re feeling stuck in a situation at work, how do you bring yourself out of that? How can you apply that same strategy to infertility or some other personal struggle?