24th - Bringing a baby into the world
For some people, the church can be a bit like a Tardis: it’s much bigger on the inside than it appears to be from the outside. We know our particular church building, squeezed between York Road and Mount Hermon Road in Woking, is a bit like that. It’s almost invisible from the road but, for those who step inside, there is a whole community which comes together, worships together, supports each other and serves our wider community.
In this series for Advent we want to open some windows so everyone can see a bit more of who we are and what goes on in a church like ours.
Following an operation when I was 22, I was told that I would never have children. It was a devastating blow that shaped the next two decades of my life and meant I regularly struggled with depression and finding a purpose. My faith, which had been strong up to that point, disappeared compounded by the fact that I actually managed to get pregnant naturally only to lose my little girl to Turner’s Syndrome.
At 42, I was in a great relationship and felt strong enough to try IVF. It was at this time that I met Sarah who is a regular at SMOB. She took my hopes and along with her prayer group, regularly prayed for our IVF to be successful. After three rounds we had the great news that we were pregnant. This then started the scary pregnancy journey as I had been here before but had my heart broken yet again. Sarah continued to pray for me and this gave me the strength to face the scans at every turn expecting bad news......but the bad news never came and on 4th October last year, God blessed us with our miracle little boy Artie.
The kind and loving actions of Sarah and her prayer group helped me find my faith again and SMOB have welcomed us into their family with open arms. We now regularly attend the 11am service where Artie is able to stay with me and play on sofas at the back of the church and no-one minds that he is sometimes vocal and loves to run up the aisles if I take my eyes off him for one minute. We’ve also been lucky to meet some wonderful mums at Bethany Babes group and have valued the chance to have a cuppa and a chat once a week!
I’m looking forward to Artie growing up in the church and finding strength, peace and happiness through his faith. I wish all those out there on the fertility rollercoaster the strength to carry on and peace in the knowledge that God is with you and will help you to face the outcome whatever that may be. There is always an open ear and arms at SMOB if ever you are faltering and need to chat or have a hug.
About me: I am a stay at home mum to Artie, aged 13 months old, and live in Pirbright with my partner Andrew.