Written by Rachel Denison
I am currently 23 weeks pregnant, and it is a really fun stage. I have begun to feel our son all the time moving and wiggling around in my stomach. For the first half of pregnancy, your faith is really tested. You do not feel the baby move; you do not see any significant growth in your body. Basically you’re just sick and tired for the first 20 weeks. This is technically my second pregnancy, and up to this point all I had known of pregnancy was the really tough trust test that it can be and the horrible symptoms that come with significant hormone change.
Needless to say, this current stage of pregnancy has been a breath of fresh air. I don’t have to barf to know that everything is alright or carry fear in my heart until the next sonogram. I can simply feel the baby move, and I know he is okay. This has been a new peace for me. So much so that last weekend he was moving a bit less, and my peace was suddenly taken from me. I realized on Saturday evening I didn’t feel much movement from him that day, and as much as I tried that night lying in bed to stir the baby, he would not comply. Craig assured me that everything was fine and encouraged me to get some rest.
I went to church the next morning and was having a difficult time in worship. I realized something was keeping my heart from being fully God’s. We were singing these lyrics from Bethel: “I will sing of all you've done. I'll remember how far you carried me. From beginning until the end, you are faithful, faithful to the end.” I was reminded of how I’m carrying our little boy and that God is going to continue to be faithful to me as he always has been. But still, something didn’t seem right.
Our families pastor got up to share a passage of Scripture after worship. Little did I know it would rock my world and put my heart back in its rightful place. He read the following passage form Isaiah 46:3-4:
Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been borne by me from before your birth, carried from the womb; even to your old age I am he, and to gray hairs I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save.
Hearing this shook me. God is carrying this boy. He was speaking straight to me in that moment. He is carrying him from before his birth in my womb, and even to his old age, he will carry him. This is all on him. I can do my best, but that is all I can do. God has this child. And he has me. I can think of nothing more comforting than this truth.
As I went back to this passage in my own time, I wanted to read it in context. This whole chapter of Isaiah is based on Israel’s idolatry. Whoa. God was taking this a step farther than comfort. He wanted to rip this idol of false peace out of my hands completely. Sections of this chapter speaking of idols that stood out to me are:
“To whom will you liken me and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be alike?” –Isaiah 46:5
“If one cries to it, it does not answer or save him from his trouble.” –Isaiah 46:7
God is saying to his people, “Hey you guys, who fashion your own idols and hold them dear, seeking comfort and hope in them! Your idols will not answer you or save you in your time of need!” God not only wants to remind us he is with us and for us, carrying us in his arms, but that he is the only one who truly can. It is far too easy to turn to other things for comfort or peace. What are those things in your life? Mine has currently been being able to feel my baby kick in order to know he’s going to be okay. This has been a handicap for me and has kept me from needing to go to God for true peace.
He is the only sustaining source. He alone will always be there for us, and he alone can meet all of our many needs. Now I’m not saying this will be easy, but I am saying it’s the only way for his people to live. Will you join me in turning away from bad habits and false senses of peace when the time comes? Can we learn to say “no” to and turn off the TV, not run to social media, not turn to consumerism when it will only numb us rather than be a lasting solution to our fear or pain? I am thankful for this prompting of God to make a change. It only comes out of his heart for me to truly thrive in peace and joy, and now I can see that clearly.
Let’s try our best to be faithful to this call:
Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’ calling a bird of prey from the east, the man of my counsel from a far country. I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it. –Isaiah 46:8-11
He will be faithful, as he has said. In this may we find real peace.
“God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?” –Numbers 23:19