Oftentimes infertility takes years to figure out what God desires for you. That empty void can be overwhelming while you wait for an answer. The pain sits at the forefront of your mind and you feel lost and listless. So, what can you do to fill the void?
I shared our sweet Marileisy’s story the last couple weeks in our Life column. What I didn’t realize when we signed up to sponsor her is that we were in a way adopting this precious little girl. We pray for her, write her, and love her. We get excited hearing about her growth and development, praying that the Lord would do mighty things in her life. Though we cannot hold her and raise her ourselves, we get to run alongside Marileisy as her cheerleaders.
One way to fill your void while you wait is to “adopt” a child through programs like Compassion International or Lemuel Ministries. This gives you opportunity to love on a child and take part in their life. It doesn’t give you the physical nurturing or as much of the spiritual input that you’d like. But you can trust that the people who are supporting your child will do that. Post-COVID, you’ll have the opportunity to visit your child as well. There’s no greater gift to them than that.
I witnessed something so beautiful while I was in the Dominican with Compassion. I saw a girl’s face light up and her eyes sparkle as she ran in her house. She came out holding what seemed like a delicate treasure to her. There in her hands was a bundle of all the letters her sponsors had sent her. She took out each letter to show us. She absolutely glowed with joy and delight. It’s a simple thing to write a quick little note to your sponsor child. But it’s a priceless treasure to them.
If you’re looking for a way to make an impact in someone’s life, but are afraid of the pain of investing into a child that isn’t yours, this is a great way to do it. There’s distance between the child and you, yet you can impact and help change a life.
Perhaps it’s too much to be connected with children. Are you a pet lover? Some days I wondered if our dog Declan was a child because it sure felt like it. He was always waiting at the door to show his love for us. He was needy of love and attention, wanting to play and have a good time. He was intuitive when we needed rest, were sad, or not feeling well. He was a great companion for us. It kept our house filled with noise and feeling alive. You could consider adopting a pet from a shelter or contact a breeder.
Do you enjoy connecting with seniors? Why not “adopt” a senior citizen? There are many people that are lonely. They may have lost their loved ones or their children all live away. They’re looking for companionship. They take joy in people visiting and listening to the stories that their life has written over the years. Something beautiful can be found in you investing in seniors and them having a chance to share. They can impart so much wisdom to you. While you go to give your time to them, more than not you’ll walk away feeling encouraged and enriched.
I visited many senior citizens when I was younger. To be honest, there were times I didn’t want to go. I was sure there was something better I could do. Yet, every single time I felt that and chose to go, I felt absolutely blessed. Their stories fascinated me. Their love, prayer, and support were so encouraging as well. Much wisdom can be gained by their counsel.
When we are dealing with infertility, it is so important to take the attention off of ourselves. It can become all consuming if we wall up and stay home in our grief. It is necessary to do that for a time. It’s good to face the grief. But, when you feel like the you’re starting to come out of the hardest part of it, take some time to pray. Ask the Lord what He would like you to do with your time and love right now. You can pray about children and the future, but don’t forget to live in the present. The Lord will reveal to You what He desires in His perfect timing. Until then, get out and invest in others. It’ll be satisfying to your soul and encourage you and your spouse in your conversations. Take advantage of this time and learn what you can. It’s never wasted.