February 13, 2018

The Pain of a Rose

Where am I today? Content and at peace.

Jill Morikone

It’s been a few years since I first wrote about Greg and my struggle with infertility. That article appeared in the Adventist Review in 2009 under the title “The Pain of a Rose.”* There is always a risk when you write about something close to your heart. Since that time Greg and I have also spoken publicly about our infertility journey on Three Angels Broadcasting Network (3ABN). It is, after all, part of our story. Part of what God has done in our lives. The changes He’s wrought. The pain that turned to peace. The acceptance that strangely wrought joy. The ministry He gave that we would not have done if that first longing had been filled.

What I hadn’t expected was the outpouring of response from readers and viewers. This in itself was a journey. I never knew so many suggestions existed for how to get pregnant! Most were helpful and kind: “If you just took this nutritional supplement”; “If only you could get away and relax”; “If you tried my recipe for beef stew—that would surely work!” Some bordered on pushy, but I told myself people shared because they cared.

Where am I today? Content and at peace.

One comment, though, I never truly got over: “I guess God knew you wouldn’t make a good parent; that’s why He withheld kids from you.” Why do we feel the need to somehow explain the unexplainable? Is it to make ourselves feel better?

On the flip side, the outpouring of prayers, love, and support from people I’d never met overwhelmed me. Even almost a decade later, not a week goes by that I don’t receive a phone call, an e-mail, or a letter from someone who’s praying for me. In fact, just this week a woman called from the Caribbean. Ever since the article appeared in the Review, this precious sister in Jesus has prayed on a daily basis for Greg and me. How incredibly humbling! People care that much?

Where am I today? Content and at peace. Excited about the journey with Jesus I’ve experienced these past several years. Life is not all roses and sun. Some days clouds appear, and we get pricked by a thorn. But it is in those moments that I have beheld the face of Jesus with such clarity. Those are the days He holds me and teaches me to trust. That is when the hold on my faith reaches the reality of my life, and I realize it’s true; His Word is true. Not one promise He has given has ever failed me.

Where is your heart today? Are you waiting for a child to come back to God, for a marriage to be restored, for a cancer to be healed? Can you trust when all looks dark? Can you reach out your hand and know that God is there?

At long last, for me, the answer no longer matters. All I want is to know that my God walks with me on this journey and that I can trust Him. Someday the pain of a thorn will give way to the untold beauties of the Rose.

* Jill Morikone, “The Pain of a Rose,” Adventist Review, May 14, 2009, p. 31.

Jill Morikone is general manager for 3ABN, a supporting Adventist television network. She and her husband, Greg, live in southern Illinois and enjoy ministering together for Jesus.