Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Comforting Pastor's Prayers

I had that moment in church again this week where I felt myself shielding myself from feeling anything. I didn't really even feel like going but we haven't gone in a few weeks since our dog died, and we thought we should go particularly to be there for others going through hard times.

It started when we arrived late and we couldn't sit in our normal place. The only obvious spot was behind my friend's parents who had their grandson with them. The grandmother, who had watched her own daughter (my friend's sister) deal with infertility and then successful pregnancy, thought she knew what I was going through... Last fall, she approached me saying those empty words to me "don't worry, it'll happen, look what happened to my daughter. It has to happen for you too." I know she meant to be helpful but... you know. So, I had to sit behind her.

And then I've been having a hard time lately with the children's sermon. Just seeing all those kids up there. And our church is growing and focusing on little ones right now and I can't figure out how to best process that.

Then, we heard about how a couple in our church was in labor that morning. This is a couple who I had journeyed with because they too had faced infertility and miscarriage. But I've felt hurt as they've gone on to have a pregnancy and have seemed to have forgotten about me. Not once since their pregnancy have they asked how I am...

And then the reading and sermon was about Lazarus and how Jesus resurrected him from the dead... How Jesus can hear our prayers.

I'm just not feeling comforted by it all. I wish I could. I wish I could be one of those people who turns to God for comfort but I've just felt more distant during these hardships...

I left church early, which was too bad because the last song was one of my favorites but I knew I had reached a breaking point and couldn't sit through Great is Th.y Faith.fulness.

My pastor called me later on and offered to pray with me by phone. We talked a bit about how I was feeling and then even though I wasn't feeling it, I allowed her to pray for me, right there on the phone. And... it was amazing. I still don't really remember what she said but I almost immediately felt comforted. She's got such a gift.

And then today, while announcing the couple's new baby (amidst complications that I was very worried about, though the mother is doing fine now), our pastor added this - which I know reflects me:

As we celebrate the arrival of a new baby in our congregation, we also pray for the families in our congregation who long to become parents but have not yet been able to do so. May God hear all of our prayers.

Comforting, huh?


  1. What a wonderful pastor you have! I'm so glad she was able to meet you where you are in your journey and provide the comfort you needed in that moment. Thinking of you & sending love ((hugs))

  2. I'm so glad your pastor offered those comforting words!

  3. I'm so glad that your pastor is so sensitive and encouraging. I'm happy to hear that she was able to say just the right thing at the right time :)

    I find church to be a difficult place too. I'm not sure why, it just is.

  4. That is so amazing that your pastor reaches out to personally about this issue. And, even more to say something about those struggling to become parents in front of the congregation. That would mean so much to me.

    Especially as I am dreading the approach of Mother's Day and will not attend church that day. I just can't take it and don't feel like I should have to either.