Today is the start of Lent. For me, it is a time of soul searching, reflection and forgiving. I have a story to share about forgiveness that hopefully will be enjoyed.
I have been pregnant four times, each pregnancy ending in miscarriage. The last pregnancy was in 1980 when my ex and I lived in Germany. I was hospitalized in my second month and heavily sedated for my health and the health of my baby. I would pray constantly that my baby be born normal and healthy.
A visiting Franciscan Priest came to the Army Hospital in Wurzburg Germany to visit and bring communion. He asked me where I was from and I told him a small town in Florida that he would not know. He told me that he had visited a small migrant church off a main highway in Apoka or something like that, and I said APOPKA and he said yes. I was amazed that there was a priest in Germany that knew my home town church in Apopka, Florida. He never came back to see me again and I sometimes wondered if I dreamed it.
After my second miscarriage, the doctors told me that I should not try anymore to have children. I did not follow their advise and I almost died with my third pregnancy and my forth was no different. At six months, I lost the baby. My anger at God was tremendous and my pain unbearable. I was not able to go near children or pregnant women. I could not handle the sadness I felt.
I went on to live a wonderful life but God was not someone I had much trust I believed in Him, I just was so hurt by Him that I could not get past it. I went to church and tried to heal the wound but no luck.
One Sunday a visiting Priest spoke in church and invited everyone to a workshop he was giving on how God never says no. HA! I went and was sitting in the front row for that one. God had certainly told me no, and in a huge way! All through the workshop, I learned so much but the question on my mind was not answered. At the end of the workshop, I asked about the never saying no business. I wanted an answer! He told me that God never says no, because when we pray, we are really just asking for God to be with us, and He is. I thought back to the visiting priest at the hospital in Germany and knew that God was indeed with me. All the pain and sadness were immediately gone. I was finally free. I was able to see where I was clearly told not to have any children and it was my own self will that forced the issue to try again and again.
My ex and I decided to name our four children, Thomas, Peter, Elizabeth and Holly and give them to God. We laid four roses at the feet of Mary’s statue at the church grotto and asked Mary to take care of them until we could be there. The peace I have known since is amazing.
God does not promise to give us what we want but He does promise to be with us as we face the tragedies, disappointments, and joys in our life. I encourage anyone who is angry with God to open your heart and find solutions to heal the wounds. And if you have anger toward another person or establishment, please find a way to let go of the anger so you can be free. It is worth the effort.