Today I want to share the story of Charlie. The decision to have another addition in our family has been one of a number of great tests of faith for us, and another addition of proof that our Heavenly Father loves and cares for us, and that He will always provide a way for us to accomplish what He asks of us.
Our four girls were all "planned". Meaning, we decided that we were ready for another child and we were prepared to welcome them into our family. This was not the case with Charlie. We had planned to wait until Allyson was at least 2 years old before we would even consider the idea of having another child. There was much for us to work toward before were ready for that. But, I was taking the girls for a walk one day and the words came to me suddenly, "You have a little boy, his name is Charles, and he is ready to come join the family". Hmmm... okay. I waited a couple of days before I told Jarom the impression I had been given. We went to the temple later that week and that impression was confirmed to both of us at that time. We weren't quite sure what to do. For the first time we didn't feel ready for this.
Our greatest concern was that if we had another baby we would have to move. Our townhome only allowed 6 people and this would bump us up to 7 people. We couldn't figure out any way that we would be able to move anywhere else. Any place large enough was far out of our price range. Our only hope was a government loan that would allow us to actually buy a house with payments in our price range. But we did not consider this as a possibility because we had already applied for this loan and we were denied due to too much debt. Our van was our only debt, but it was enough to disqualify us.
We felt a lot of pressure about this decision and we prayed a lot about what we should do. We had come to the tentative decision that we would continue using birth control and then if we got pregnant anyway we would know that the timing was right. I wasn't completely comfortable with this plan, and it only lasted about a day. I was in the shower the next day (I do a lot of thinking in the shower, its one of my only quiet spaces), and I was pondering our situation and the decision we had made, when I heard the still small voice in my mind, and the lesson I learned from what he had to say was deeply profound to me, though it seems so simple. He said, "There is a child ready to come, but He will not take your agency from you. You must choose." If we continued on birth control we would be choosing not to accept this child. We could not ask our Father in Heaven to "force" him upon us just so that we would know it was His will for us. He had already told us His will.
And so we made the choice. We put our trust in the Lord and accepted that He would provide a way for us to support our family as we expanded. We could not figure out how He was going to do that, but that is what makes Him God, and us merely human. We don't need to know everything when we want to know it. Faith is a major part of growth and learning. And it allows us to appreciate our blessings so much more.
And we did receive blessings. Many, many blessings. Not only did He provide for us, but he seemed to give us extra blessings.The most obvious example is that we were able to buy a home. While getting the kids into the van for church one Sunday morning, our neighbor came down the street and, not paying much attention, she ran right into the back of Jarom's car, which had been parked on the street. We were a little frustrated at first, but it didn't take long for us to realize that "God works in mysterious ways". Jarom's car was totaled, and the insurance money we got for it was enough to payoff the rest of our van. This left us debt free, and we were able to re-apply and qualify for the government loan that we needed to buy a home. We never would have prayed for Jarom's car to get totaled as a solution to our problem, but the Lord knew what we needed and how to make it happen. I thanked my neighbor for crashing into Jarom's car. She thought I was crazy, but she was a tool for the Lord to bless our lives. We now live in a beautiful home that we love and it accommodates us well! We have no worries about our little Charlie joining us. We know we will be fine and that the Lord will continue to provide for us.
There is one more thing that we consider a blessing from this whole thing. Seven weeks into my pregnancy we found that we were expecting twins. We automatically saw this as an added blessing for following the Lord's counsel. A "two-for-one deal", if you will. That has not worked out the way we expected, and I will write more about that story in a different post. But I still, to this day, consider that child an added blessing.
I have an amazing life! I could never deny that my Heavenly Father obviously loves and blesses me, as He does all of His children.