Infertility and Psalm 56

In the last couple of days, some ladies have found and been blessed by a post I made on infertility. They’ve asked for more, and my sermon this coming Lord’s Day seems particularly applicable. By God’s plan, we have not yet struggled with infertility. We have had one miscarriage, and who knows – maybe we won’t be able to have any more children, even though we want more. But for those who have yearned for even one child, and who have not yet heard the Lord say, “Yes,” hear the words of Psalm 56:8 – “You have taken account of my wanderings; put my tears in Your bottle. Are they not in Your book?” What comfort to know that God sees, God hears, God takes note, God misses none of our cries to Him. He is bottling our weeping, recording it faithfully. As Alec Motyer has put it, “There is never a fluctuation of fortune or a tear, but the divine pen is at the ready to record it and the bottle to catch it.” He sympathizes with us in our sorrow and struggle. He is not a distant God.

But, you say, I don’t want just a God who is near, a God who comforts, a God who consoles and remembers my grief; I want a God who acts on my behalf to change my circumstances, who takes away my tears. Dear friend, remember that the God who has a book for tears also has a book in which are written all the days that have been ordained for you, when as yet there was not one of them (Psalm 139:16). He has sovereignly ordained your wanderings, your suffering, your tears, your loss, your emptiness, your lack of children. Why? For His glory, and because He loves you. He knows what is best for you, and He has promised to one day bring you home safely, wipe away every tear from your eyes, and give you more than you could even ask or imagine. Your unfulfilled desire for children (or whatever it is that you’re lacking and longing for) is a reminder that He alone can satisfy you. He refrains from giving us what we desire that we might desire Him all the more, that we might learn patience, that we might learn His heart of compassion, that we might long for heaven, that we might learn contentment, that we might learn how to pray, that we might learn how to suffer well, that we might grow in our love for Him and for others who suffer interminably.

Who knows if God might, like King Ahasuerus of old, pull out His book one day and say, “What honor or dignity has been bestowed on my servant for this faithful patience and persistence in prayer and crying out to me?” (cf. Esther 6:3). But even if He doesn’t, like the three Hebrews boys said in Daniel 3:18, we’re not going to serve false gods, but the Lord alone. Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus, and wipe every tear away from our eyes.

SDG,
Ezra

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Dale Cangelosi on February 24, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Great post Caleb. “He refrains from giving us what we desire that we might desire Him all the more,” is so true and it can take a lifetime to get to this point, of making Him all we need.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Katy Brink on February 24, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    So lovely and well-said.

    Reply

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