December 1, 2014
When my husband and I were first married, having children of our own was out of the question. When I said, “I do,” I had adjusted my expectations of motherhood to the reality that we would adopt children to create our family. And then one day, three years into our marriage we learned that science had caught up with us.
A fertility doctor came and said to us, “Do not be afraid, for behold you will conceive in your womb and bear a child.” We asked a lot of questions like, “How can this be?” The fertility doctor then explained the science of IVF with ICSI and I suspect our faces looked as surprised and confused as Mary’s when Gabriel explained God’s plan to get her pregnant. The prophecy that we could get pregnant was a hope for the future of our family that had never before been a part of our imagination.
Once the prophecy was made, we began the journey of turning ourselves over to a power greater than ourselves (fertility nurses and doctors, and God) and waiting to see what would happen. Waiting is hard work because the work being done is out of our control.
Would the prophecy come true? Would the embryo form? Would the cells divide? Would the blastosphere implant?
There is nothing we can do to force a prophecy to unfold even if it was proclaimed by an angel, a messenger of God. We can only be very patient and wait faithfully to see what God is growing in us. When we get a glimpse of God’s vision for our future and our imagination expands to include possibilities we never hoped for before, our job is to get out of God’s way and silence our own expectations. We must make room for God’s plan. In order for God’s promise for our future to unfold, we must wait in the darkness and allow the work to be done on us, hidden inside, and out of our hands.
The Rev. Adrien Dawson is the rector of St. Mark’s on-the-Hill Episcopal Church, Pikesville
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