Besides the obvious struggles you would imagine a mother having after losing her sweet baby girl one big thing I've struggled with is contentment. And it's not that I am discontent with my life because I see others enjoying their new babies and wish that were me (although that happens too). I mostly struggle with discontentment because I desire the life I thought the Lord was giving me.
I thought the Lord was giving me my dream: healthy Rieke babies every two years or so until our family felt complete. Instead He has chosen to give me one beautiful son to raise, one perfect daughter in Heaven, and a hole in my heart that I imagine will never be completely filled.
I often find myself longing for something different; longing for the life I had so carefully planned out for myself. I pray the impossible Lord, bring her back! knowing full well it could never be but somehow wishing it was.
When my mind wanders into this dangerous path of discontentment and coveting a different life circumstance I look to the example of one of my dearest friends.
My friend Lauren had similar dreams. But God had a different plan for her life. He took her brokenness and has used it for His glory in amazing ways. She is touching lives in much bigger ways than her original dream would have allowed.
Her wonderful example is such an encouragement to me. God puts hurts in our lives for a reason. It might take some time to see, but He uses those hurts to reach others in ways we otherwise could not.
The name for Lauren's blog is Traded Dreams. This title came from a line of a song that posed the question: will you trade your dreams for His?
Will you? Will I?
Trading a dream is hard especially when you can't see exactly what you are trading it for. It's not easy and it's not comfortable. But the Lord promises good things to those who trust His plans and follow with a spirit of contentment and obedience.