To the Childless Mother – A Message for the Women Waiting for God to Give Her a Child

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Waiting … not one of my strong suites. I’ve gotten better at being patient as I’ve gotten older, although I still struggle. Part of waiting is trusting God and trusting in His timing. Sometimes I wish His timing looked more like my timing. Ha! Have you ever felt like that? I have to tell you, every time I’ve waited on GOD the end result has been better than I could have imagined. There is one thing that God is still making me wait for: to be a mother.

That’s right He is making me wait for a child. I have prayed what seems like innumerable prayers for a child. In my career, in one capacity or another, I have cared for nearly 1,000 children.  But my experience with children doesn’t count, as I’ve been told, it doesn’t matter because I’m not a mother. At the risk of sounding boastful, I have more experience raising children than most first-time parents, but it doesn’t matter because none of them were “my kids.”

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Me holding my friend’s baby 2015

Does it matter that I have loved them? Cared for them. Cried for and with them. Smiled and laughed with them. Rocked many of them to sleep. Disciplined some of them. Cleaned up after them. I’ve been pooped on, thrown up on, and peed on. And I’ve been spat at. When a child had a tantrum, I worked with him or her through it. I worried about them. I’ve prayed over them. I’ve spoken Jesus to them. Isn’t that what parenting is? But none of it matters right? Because I don’t have any children to call my own.

Be Kind in What You Say

I say all of that because mother’s day is coming. Mother’s day is a hard time for women like me. Most of the women I’ve known in my situation have tried to fill that void by working with kids in some way. Because it’s not just a void, it’s an instinct that God has put in us as women. We are nurturers, careers, and helpers. So to wait for your child is hard. Whether you are longing to get pregnant or anxiously waiting for your adoption to go through, waiting for your baby is tough.

It’s even tougher when those around you are not careful about what they say to those waiting mothers. It’s a painful struggle to hear:

You’ve been married how long? And you don’t have kids yet?!? Girl, you need to hurry up!

Or

Don’t you want children?

Or

You’re how old? (I’m almost 30, just in case you were wondering)

Or

You know you’re running out of time.

Or

A manager, in front of co-workers and clients, wishes every woman in the room a Happy Mother’s day. Just to single you out and point out that you don’t have kids and that your step-daughter lives with her real mother in another state, and then says “oh never mind for you then.”

Humiliating.

The worst is when you feel like you’re less. Like you aren’t a valid person because you don’t have a child. FYI: I am valid. I am a valid person, woman, and human being. Just. As. I. Am.

For those of you who have said or thought any of the above or similar statements to the above, please be thoughtful as you discuss children, or a lack there, of with women who don’t have any. You don’t know the struggle she may be facing.

Waiting to Be a Mother

For those of you who are waiting patiently for God to answer your prayers, He hears you. He has not abandoned you. He loves you so incredibly much. And He does not get any joy out of your pain. But why does He make you wait? I ask the same question, with no answer other than, His timing.

What I do know is that if we “take delight in the Lord” then He will “give us the

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Taken by Na’omi Keith in Skagit County, WA

desires of our hearts.” More specifically Psalm 37:3-4 says:

 

Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart

If we trust in the Lord, do good, and do the things that delight the Lord, He will give us the desires of our heart. What’s interesting is that when we delight in the Lord our hearts will reflect His desires for us.

And while we are delighting in the Lord we will wait for the Lord. 2 Peter 3:8 says

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.

My dad taught me that the Lord is outside of time. After all, He created time. So while we are waiting for what seems like forever, God’s got time in His back pocket. He knows exactly when our child needs to enter our lives. Psalm 27:14 says “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” He’s got it. Now, you and I have to trust Him.

Hope in Being a Mother

In those moments I feel like I’m giving up hope, I remind myself, I’m a mother. But how is that possible? The verse that I cling to as I sit here, a mother without her child

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Taken by Na’omi Keith Tulip Festival 2016, Mt. Vernon, WA

is Mark 11:24:

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

I believe with every prayer and every breath that I have at least one child. I don’t know if I will birth my child or adopt my child. Maybe I will do both someday. But I choose to believe that I have a child and only God knows where he or she is at this moment.

So with that, I say to every woman who desperately prays for her child: Do not give up hope! Never stop believing that your baby is on the way. Pray every day for the safe and healthy arrival of your little one. Trust that God will give you your child at the right moment when he or she needs to enter the world to be the person God needs him or her to be.

Congratulations! Happy Mother’s Day!

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