Written by: Matt & Amy Ostropolec
There is something meaningful in the phrase “calm after the storm”. But there is something even more meaningful with the phrase “calm through the storm”. Over the past few years we have experienced great deal of storms. Countless times we found ourselves sitting on our bed facing opposite directions with tears running down our faces or we sat on the couch or stairs holding each other as we toiled and discuss the next mountain we needed to climb together.
Even though there was pain and hurt something remand strong – God’s love for us.
We all have a plan. Some more than others, but most of us as least have some sort of idea of where they want to be in a day, a week, a month, a year, 5 years and some even 10. We have an expectation that things need to be accomplished by a certain age, or stage.
I wish someone had have waved their hands in my face when I was younger (and very naive) and said “Wait just a second, that’s not how life works…please don’t set your expectations too high!” But, I thought (like we all do) “I’m different, my life will be better, my plans will work.” And with high hopes we run into our dreams, our plans with two feet in front. Until at some point or another we realize hmmm, maybe I’m not in as much control of this life as I thought I was.
We wanted kids, and once we made the decision, we just assumed they would be on the way, like a lot of how our other plans worked. We asked, we worked, we got. Well, not this time. God had us in a season (with both of our daughters) that tested our patience, our finances, and our relationship-with each other, and God. We didn’t understand during it, why we kept having miscarriages, or why month after month we couldn’t conceive. But God knew. God had a reason (*insert eye roll for those dealing with infertility now, I get it!) Even though we didn’t understand- all that matters is that once we took our eyes off ourselves for what we thought we needed at a particular time and give that up to the creator of all things. Your perspective just changes—it just does. There is a CALM in the middle of it all. That God—the living God has WAY bigger (and BETTER!) plans than we could ever dream of. When we walk close with Jesus our eyes our fixed on heaven—we have a hope that one day things will be different, things will be better. And in that day, that dark, ugly, crappy day…we are still okay because we know it’s not on our shoulders.
Then we have a choice. A choice to trust that God is bigger than our circumstances and struggles, or we just continue to try and hash it out ourselves believing we have what it takes to fix everything, or at least to hold it all together.
When we were told our infant daughter was going to have to have surgery on her ureter (the tube that connects her kidney to her bladder- because no urine could pass though). We were in shock. How could a tiny little baby have to go into surgery? Why did this happen? After all we have been though- why her, why us? There were so many trips to the doctors and hospitals out of town, appointments where we would literally feel like we were starving our newborn so they could complete the test properly. Too many IV’s, needles, too many big words we didn’t understand, and worries that were as high as you could imagine. But God gave us a promise over that little baby’s life. Even before I had her, God spoke to my heart and told me “There will be complications, but in the end she will be a healthy baby.” And even though we knew they were words spoken from heaven…we had moments of doubt, we wondered if everything really would be ok.
My dearest friend gave us a sign for our daughter’s room it says “Faith-being sure of what we hope for.” And at first I didn’t even really understand it, but every day I would sit and nurse my daughter in her room and read that over and over. And eventually I knew that I had FAITH that my daughter would be ok because I had a promise from God that she would. And we made a decision to trust that even though this hurdle seemed a little too big we kept our eyes on Jesus and thanked him that this problem could be fixed, that we have doctors who are so skilled, that we have medicine to fight infection, that we have families that are praying and supporting us.
When we can learn to turn our tragedies into thankfulness everything changes…not because the circumstances change but because our focus and our attitudes do. We can see how truly blessed we are. And we really, truly can experience CALM in the middle of the storm.
About Amy & Matt:
Matt and Amy Ostropolec have been married for 6 years and have 2 beautiful daughters! Matt’s a high school teacher and Amy has the best job in the world- staying at home with their girls! They are so thankful for the opportunity to share a little bit of their journey with you!