Act Pregnant Now to Get Pregnant Later!

Competition might be in my top strengths... so naturally, I love a good challenge. :)

Have you heard about this one?? Here's what caught my attention about Gabriela Rosa's 12 Day Fertility Challenge- "Act Pregnant Now to Get Pregnant Later."

First off, this is not a spiritually-based challenge, so I'm intrigued to get started and see how it lines up with my faith! But- I think there's something to that "act pregnant now" bit!! If you've been around our community for long, you know we're ALL ABOUT the power of our thoughts and our words! Billy and I are looking forward to starting the challenge on July 4. Wanna join us?

Click below. It's free!

What in the World is God doing?

As I stare at a blank page unsure of where to even begin, I quietly ask the Lord, “What is your heart for this community? What do you have to say to these ladies and families?”

As we wrap up National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW), do I write something for the mom who has never met her babies because of miscarriage? Or maybe to the family who just decided on adoption. Or what about to the ladies who are just starting their “ttc journey” and going through what we like to call “delayed fertility.” Or maybe I’ll write to everyone with “unexplained infertility.” Wait, no, I have it- I should write to the woman who’s truly infertile. She like really never had children. She’s gone through menopause. And she has told God “no thank you” on that Sarah miracle. Yes, maybe I should write to her. Or to the mom who has a child at home but is struggling with guilt and shame and- oh yes- secondary infertility. She definitely needs a pick-me-up. Who am I even writing to, Lord?

So I come back to my quiet questions with the Father. God, what is your heart for this community? What do you have to say to these ladies and families? Because I don’t want to write another article just for the sake of another awareness week.

Well I believe He has ALOT to say and here’s what He dropped on my heart.

It doesn’t matter if you’re literally infertile or considering adoption or already have kids at home but about to start yet another round of IUI. It doesn’t matter if you’ve had 7 failed IVF’s or your husband has no sperm or you’re battling cervical cancer. It doesn’t matter how much money is in your bank account or your HSA. It doesn’t matter how many eggs you have, what shape your uterus is, or what size your cysts are. It doesn’t matter how many recurrent miscarriages you’ve had or that you can’t seem to get past the 1st trimester. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never conceived, and you know what?!- It doesn’t matter if your issue is so bad that it didn’t even make this list!

And here’s why!

God’s not intimidated by the list I just gave.

God is not upstairs biting His nails wondering “How do I get her out of this mess?!"

He is not preoccupied or too busy for your issue.

He has not forgotten you or stopped listening to you or put your mail at the bottom of the stack to deal with later.

God is not worried and He’s not confused.

He’s not scared or rushed or hopeless.

He hasn’t pressed pause on your story, and He hasn’t misplaced your prayer request.

He hasn’t rejected or abandoned you or your dreams.

He isn’t dangling bait or trying to tease you. It’s just not in His nature.

He didn’t give you the wrong child or mess up during conception, and He didn’t kill your baby. Nope, He sure didn’t.  

 

Here’s what He IS doing!

He’s showing compassion in tangible ways!

He’s healing cancer and endometriosis.

He’s dissolving cysts. He’s distributing peace and wisdom into your situation.

He’s creating sperm from nothing.

He’s reshaping and repositioning wombs.

He’s carefully preparing your heart for your promise.

He’s creating life and redeeming loss.

He’s re-arranging people and situations and schedules on your behalf.

He’s calming the storm.

 

He’s reaching out His hand for you.

He’s moving mountains into the sea!

He’s raising dry bones and wounded hearts and dead dreams!

He’s handing out freedom.

He’s answering prayers and He’s speaking!

He’s working on your behalf!!!

 

So here’s to raising awareness not just for infertility, but for a God bigger than infertility. I hope this week we see more miracle stories than anything else... in order to stir hope in this community and create an atmosphere for miracles to be duplicated!!

If you are anywhere on the “infertility” spectrum... we hope you’ll stick around and dig through our resources. We hope you’ll find community in our online groups. We hope you’ll be encouraged by our social media posts. But mostly we hope you’ll be pointed to Jesus and refueled in your hope!


 

Choosing Adoption

We discussed adoption before I took out my Nuvaring and starting trying for a family. It felt 100 years away, but looking back, I know God was preparing our hearts for a unique way to grow our family. After we’d been trying to conceive for almost 2 years, we went through a series of fertility testing and the results were devastating.

We didn’t really have an option for fertility treatments. I would have given everything at the time for even a 15% chance of conception, but in hindsight, I’m so grateful that the door was closed and locked. I would have spent years trying to break down that door to experience pregnancy, but instead God directed us back to adoption.

I remember that conversation with my husband so well after his results came back. We went to Market Street, ordered a beer and stared at each other for a while. When I look back at that meeting, I’m so amazed at our initial response. We knew that God was asking us to adopt, and we knew that there was a little girl out there that needed us as a family (it’s so sweet, we always saw our first as a daughter which is what God gave us).

Our purpose is to give God glory, and he will do what he does in our life for his glory. Our story includes the beautiful gift of adoption, and it was hard, oh gosh, it was hard. I know that God could miraculously give us a biological child, but in the meantime, he’s given me a heart for the child without a family.

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God used infertility to grow our family through adoption. His miracle was that he brought the most beautiful (if you think I’m biased, join me for a trip to the grocery store where I have to swat people off my daughter because they are obsessing over her! ;), sweet daughter into our life through the gift of adoption. You can let NIAW breed fear in your life, or ask God how he is going to redeem this struggle. 

 

 


Guest post written by Amanda Hogue. Amanda is a stay-at-home mama to her sweet adopted daughter. She enjoys long conversations over an iced coffee, mystery novels books, and any type of chocolate. You can find her discussing adoption over on instagram and sharing adoption resources at her own corner of I Am Fruitful

The Why Before the Miracle

By Elisha Kearns

Many of us know the stories written in the New Testament about Jesus healing the lame, restoring eyesight to the blind, and cleansing the lepers. But did you know the first recorded healing mentioned in the Word of God involved barren wombs?

It’s true.

Just 20 chapters into the Bible we are told of King Abimelech's maidservants who were unable to bear children until Abraham prayed for them and they were healed. Then just a few short chapters later we learn of Abraham and Sarah who couldn’t have children, but God blessed them with Isaac, even in their old age. Not too long after that we read of Isaac and his wife Rebekah who struggled to have children but God blessed them with twins! Can you believe it? Twins! Even before fertility medication! But it doesn't stop there. Later in the same book we learn of Jacob and Rachel who were also barren, but God healed and blessed them as well. And we can’t forget Hannah who after many long years (perhaps over a decade) of suffering and heartache, God not only blessed her with Samuel, but five more children. FIVE!

And while I find all of this fascinating, because let’s face it, there is always something special about the first mention of a miracle in the bible, what I find most hopeful in each of their stories is this: not one time does God ever mention why they were unable to conceive.

He could have easily told us it was due to Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, blocked Fallopian tubes, low ovarian reserve, massive fibroid's, poor egg quality, uterine lining issues, or even no uterus. Or he could have at least mentioned that it had nothing to do with her but rather an issue with her husband.

But He didn’t.

And do you know why I find this so fascinating and hopeful? I believe it shows that it didn't matter why and it wasn't important to God to mention why because ultimately when it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter.

At least to Him.

Because when He planted this desire deep within the soft fertile soil of your heart, He wasn't looking at your medical chart and what stage of endometriosis your doctors say you are in. He wasn't looking at your bank account or insurance coverage to determine if medical intervention was an option. He wasn't  looking to see how many Fallopian tubes you have or do not have. He wasn't counting your husband's sperm and checking to see if they were "usable." No, sweet friend. The only thing He was looking at was His grace partnered with your faith that could and would overcome it all.

Sweet sister, if you are struggling to believe God cares about your unfulfilled longing to be a Mama, know today that He does. His word wasn't written so that you can just know what He did, but also know what He still wants to do. He wants to take you from barrenness into fruitfulness. He wants to take you from lack into abundance. And nothing you are facing or will ever face can stop Him. He gives life when life is “impossible,” and He is the healer of any life that He has created.


Hi friends, Amanda here! When my IG friend @waitingforbabybird recently posted a version of this post, I immediantly teared up. I just knew that this message was exactly what you, my friend, needed to hear. You are not alone in your struggle to conceive, and we're praying for you. If you are still waiting for an unfulfilled to be a mom, please reach out to us so we can pray for you! 

2018 NIAW Graphics

National Infertility Awareness Week
April 22 – 28, 2018

Since National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) is coming up, Lauren got to work and created free graphics for YOU to share as you please leading up to and during NIAW! During such a difficult week, we want to spread the hope of GOD and would love to see a shift in the attitude infertility posts. That is why these graphics are uplifting, faith-building, and hope-inspiring!

This is our third year in a row to provide free graphics for the TTC Community! For a TON of ideas on how to bring awareness to infertility, go HERE.

Save these graphics and iPhone wallpapers to your phone and share on social media! 

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Word for 2018!

I asked a couple of the ladies on our Prayer and Prophetic Team to pray and ask the Lord for a word for this community for 2018, and I'm so thrilled to share it with you today!!

It is NOT too late to personally ask the Lord for a word for yourself and your family. For some, that literally means a single word like "restore." And maybe looking up the definition. For others, the Lord may give you a couple pages of direction and promises, things to look forward to or prepare for! But here is what the Lord put on our hearts for you!


Katie Mendoza (I Am Fruitful Board of Directors, Prayer & Prophetic Team)

IDENTITY

I get this picture in my head of God and all of Heaven’s choirs singing joyful songs of identity over His people in 2018. 

“The Lord your God is in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17 NKJV

Before His return, I believe He wants His kids to walk with such a confidence and authority of who they are in Him. He loves each daughter and son intimately and extravagantly and in 2018 the body of Christ is going to get a fresh revelation of that love. As you come into the reality of what that supernatural uncomparable love is, He is going to give you fresh vision of who you are in Christ. I see the I Am Fruitful community seeing every situation, and diagnosis through the lens of Heaven. I see in 2018 the I Am Fruitful community taking off weights that many have been carrying for as long as they can remember. After the weights come off I get this picture of a woman laying bare before the Lord, wearing no weights, and I see Jesus walking up to her and handing her the most extravagant and beautiful bouquet of flowers, it has every kind of flower in this one bouquet, and He made it just for her. I also see Jesus suiting this woman up in the armor of God. The bouquet signifies His intricate and detailed love. Every flower so different and so beautiful…every flower is a representation of why He loves her. She is worthy of that love. The armor represents the warrior He sees her as. Every piece of armor represents a different way to combat the enemy. As Jesus suits her up with each piece of armor she understands her place as a daughter of a King, and she is bold and strong. 

“Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6:13-17 NLT

“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33 NLT

“But first and most importantly seek (aim at, strive after) His kingdom and His righteousness [His way of doing and being right—the attitude and character of God], and all these things will be given to you also.” Matthew 6:33 AMP

“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers-- most of which are never even seen--don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I'm trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God's giving. People who don't know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don't worry about missing out. You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met."            Matthew 6:30-33 MSG 

I hear the Lord saying over the I am Fruitful community, “Don’t get preoccupied with everything else, but seek me first, Pursue me first, With every ounce of your being set your gaze to me.” As you throw off the weights, turn your ear to the songs of heaven, receive His elaborate and personal love, put on your armor and turn every bit of your focus to Jesus, you will walk in the identity and confidence as a Daughter and Son of the Most High. the Bible says that everything else has to come into alignment with what the Kingdom of Heaven’s perspective is about every situation in your life. Walk in boldness, authority and confidence because the Most High God, creator of the whole world made you to be like Him. 


Hailee Seiwert (I Am Fruitful Project Coordinator, Prayer & Prophetic Team)

LIFT OUR HEADS, LIFT OUR HANDS

“Let all the people of Jerusalem shout his praise with joy! For great is the Holy One of Israel who lives among you.” Isaiah 12:6

God is the same, we are not. God is the same, our circumstances are not. God is the same, our problems are not. On your best day, God. On your worst day, God. The God before your problem is the same God during your problem and He will be the same God after. The enemy would love for you to believe that God has changed along with your circumstances. That as your prayers have gone unanswered, God has become more distant. That on your worst day, God has retreated. That in order to get Him back, you must work, toil, and DO. That is not our God. God is the same. Yesterday. Today. Tomorrow, He is the same. From that day on the cross, He is the same. His love is the same. From the moment you He knew you and knit you, His love is unchanged.

Let’s lift up our heads to the God who is with us in the pain of yesterday, the reality of today, and the uncertainty of tomorrow. Let’s lift up our hands to the God who makes a way, the God who goes before, the God of peace and certainty. Let’s turn from our distractions, our idols, our counterfeit comfort and turn our hearts to God. Our full hearts, including the doubt and sorrow, including the pain and wondering, including the bitterness and questions. He wants you, all of you. Like a loving Father He says, “turn to me, take my hand, I am with you.” 


Lauren Bourne (I Am Fruitful Founder & President)

GOD IS WITH YOU!

"The Lord. your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing." Zephaniah 3:17

The Lord highlighted the song “O Holy Night” for the I Am Fruitful Community, and yes, I know it's a Christmas song. But I believe God will carry this Christmas theme throughout your 2018. 

3 things He highlighted from this song:

  • A thrill of hope
  • Chains shall He break
  • In His name all oppression shall cease

I believe the Lord wants to take you on a journey this year. A journey to take you deeper and really show you what you mean to Him and who you are in Him. I believe He desires to usher you into a deeper understanding that He came to this earth to live and die for YOU and that He's always with you. When you realize your value to Him, and understand your worth in the Kingdom- you will experience that “thrill of hope.” That love- it will envelope you. It will give you hope for your future because you know that God is FOR you!

I believe that in 2018, God will break chains that have held many of you bound and you will be freed from oppression.

In 2018, you will sing songs of JOY!

Breakthrough will come through your praise! Don’t wait to praise Him until after you experience breakthrough! Praise before! I believe God wants to carry this powerful oppression-ending, chain-breaking, joy-filling theme into your new year!!


OUR TEAM WOULD LOVE TO PRAY FOR YOU!

Wait Until He's Late

by Bethany Kuenzli

There was a time in John 11, where a woman like me was waiting on Jesus full of the same hope and faith that He would come…until He was late. 

She wasn’t infertile, but her brother was dying.

Lazarus was sick but I can imagine that Mary was believing that Jesus, the Son of God, who loved her would come for him.

JESUS, the one who raised the dead and released healing everywhere He went, would surely come for his friend. 

Mary & Martha wrote to Him, saying, “Lord, he whom You love is ill.”

I can see her comforting those around her in the days leading up to his death. "It's okay guys, I know He is coming. Just wait.”

But when Jesus heard it, He said, “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Before we read this verse and think that God is putting us through this season so that He can receive the glory, lets put that lie to death. Death is not where God got the glory but resurrection. He is always about our healing. Your victory is His glory, not your pain. 

But when He heard that Lazarus was ill, He stayed two days longer in the place where He was. 

Excuse me, what? Doesn’t love come immediately on a stallion yet here, it was His love that caused Him to wait.

Have you ever gone to a restaurant and someone is seated before you that arrived after you? That is NOT FAIR and that is exactly what Jesus does in this situation. He is being called and purposefully not coming.

Wait. This is a word that we cringe hearing especially if the waiting time is unknown.

Waiting ultimately feels like our control has been stolen because that’s exactly what satan does when we encounter illness. He starts putting in files of disappointment, which births a season of reasoning. 

Tormenting thoughts come in waves like: 

“We’re not good enough to be parents, so that’s why God hasn’t blessed us with kids.” 

“This is never going to happen.”

“God You said this would happen and it hasn’t, so you must be a liar.”

“I’m too old/overweight/impossible to be healed.”

He can infiltrate lies and steal our control, but he cannot steal God’s authority or truth. 

Jesus was not manipulated by people’s burdens or controlled by time. He didn’t focus on the problem but the purpose.

So Lazarus died and perhaps her hope didn't die out instantly with him. Maybe she whispered to her friends, "It's okay guys, I know He is coming." After all He had raised the dead! It wasn't a matter of what she believed He could do, it was if He would show up.

The Jews belief spread throughout the land that the spirit lingers after 3 days of death and is able to resurrect in that time frame so when Jesus finally came on the FOURTH day, He was considered TOO late because resurrection was no longer "possible."

Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother and I wonder what their consolations sounded like?

Did they say, ”Mary, God's already showed me that He's going to raise your brother from the dead so I'm not even worried about it!” 

Or, ”Mary, don't doubt the goodness of God." 

Or, ”Mary, don't cry! It’s gonna be okay.”

I don’t know what things have been said to you in your season of disappointment but when Jesus finally came, Martha went to greet Him and Mary remained seated in the house. Maybe she wanted to make Jesus wait like He made her wait. 

Eventually she came & fell at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

In that moment, He didn't put the pressure on her by saying: "Mary, if you would have faith, I will heal your brother." Or shame her by asking, "Mary, Why are you crying, don't you know who I AM? Haven't you seen my works? Don't you know, I AM HEALER?”

Instead…

Jesus wept.

The shortest verse in the Bible and the most profound.

See most of us think there are two responses to pain:

Encouragement or Discouragement but Jesus did what was needed most: Empathy.

He KNEW that in a few moments He would raise Lazarus from the dead! But it was intricately important for Him to show the world how to grieve.

Fully man. Fully God. Fully grieving.

Not numbing. Not stuffing. Not denying. Not hiding. Not smiling.

Not wiping the tears from her eyes but wetting His own.

In that moment, He was healing her before He ever healed Lazarus.

What if that was His purpose? What if healing her was His glory? 

In that moment, He was teaching centuries, that grief is not giving up on God. It's right there in the midst of your pain where He shows up and weeps with you. That barrenness can actually birth so much life in you.

That your pain can grip you at the same time His love can grasp you.

What an emotional experience. What an extravagant encounter.

Then Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”

How long have you been in the waiting room? How many people has Jesus touched before you that have tried after you? How many prayers have been sent for Him to come? 

The waiting room may be a time where you give up, get down, get jealous, get angry, and get hopeless but if you look beside you…you will see the man who’s God, crying with you, greeting you with hope again.

And your heart will begin to believe that hope isn’t a set up for disappointment but rather prophesying your future victory. And the time you get enough faith to pull out a pregnancy test and it’s negative, it is proving that you still believe that He will come! 

And He will. 

He may be late but love always comes.


A huge thanks to our guest author, Bethany Kuenzli, for taking the time to share her heart and her wisdom with the I Am Fruitful Community!!


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More than a writer, speaker or worship leader, Bethany is a lover of God. 

She lives in Mississippi with her husband Caleb and toy golden doodle Graham, where they work together as Co-Directors of a non-profit called Land of the Living. They equip a generation to connect with their heart & the heart of God by hosting "Rekindle Retreats” for all ages. 

She enjoys pouring her soul out on paper with honest talk about what it means to live fully and wholly. Learn more about her thoughts on joy, pain and the life in between on her website: bethanyboone.com

30 Days of Thankfulness IN THE WAIT!

A Photo-A-Day Challenge

It's NOVEMBER! And that means leaves and pumpkin and cold weather and most of all a stirring of thankfulness is in the air! But sometimes it's hard to be (and feel) thankful when we're waiting on something. Maybe you're waiting to become pregnant, waiting on a job situation to change, waiting on your healing, waiting on that thing that you have no control over but to pray. While we're waiting, we can still be thankful! It may feel like a big sacrifice, and it may be hard, but we can still be thankful!! And look what this amazing scripture shows us about sacrificing thanksgiving to God:

Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God,
    and keep the vows you made to the Most High.
Then call on me when you are in trouble,
    and I will rescue you,
    and you will give me glory.

Psalms 50:14-16 (NLT)

It tells us that after we make thankfulness a sacrifice to God, THEN we call on him when we're in trouble and He'll rescue us!!

Simply post a photo each day on Instagram/FB and tag @i.am.fruitful #iamfruitfulchallenge)

  1. Fall

  2. This Scripture

  3. This Food

  4. Love

  5. Book

  6. Quiet Time

  7. Cycle Day

  8. My Home

  9. This Guy

  10. Cozy

  11. Friends

  12. Marriage

  13. Hoping for

  14. A tradition

  15. Finances

  16. This gives me hope

  17. Drink/Mug

  18. Emotional healing

  19. Worship

  20. Someone else miracle

  21. Doctor

  22. Job

  23. Family

  24. Leftovers

  25. Hobbies

  26. Spot in my home

  27. Something I made

  28. A trip

  29. Something God has done

  30. Expectation

Psalms 116:17 (The Message) "I’m ready to offer the thanksgiving sacrifice and pray in the name of God."

I'm ready, are you!?


Share and do this with your friends! Pin so you can do it with us next year!

10 Journaling Prompts Through Miscarriage

If you are grieving the loss of a baby, I am so sorry! It's one of the hardest things to go through, and although you will never forget (and you don't want to)... it will get easier. It IS possible for your heart to heal because we serve a loving Father who comforts us and takes care of us and desires for us to walk in full and complete health- physically AND emotionally! 

Whether your miscarriage was 10 years ago or your baby died at birth last week, our team wants to encourage you to grieve- and that looks different for everyone. Don't be afraid to take the hard questions to God, to figure out why you're angry, to cry, to ask for help, to get some counseling or therapy. In our culture, we have been conditioned to think those things are a sign of weakness, but I believe they are a sign of a very strong woman who is dealing with her disappointment and loss in a healthy way!

So on to our journaling. One of the ways we figure out how we feel and begin to move on is by writing! And you don't have to write a novel. There were days after my miscarriages that I filled pages of my journal with ink and tears, but there were days I couldn't write at all- or I could write a single, angry sentence. Both were good. Both were healthy. 

Here are 10 simple journal prompts while you're going through the loss of a baby:

1. I feel God's presence most when...

2. Sometimes I feel guilty because...

3. I feel like I'm missing out on...

4. I feel angry because...

5. I'm grateful for...

6. I feel shame when...

7. A scripture that's helping me is...

8. God's showing me that He is...

9. The hardest time of day is...

10. I find the most hope when...


If you feel this was helpful for you, don't forget to Pin and Share it for other ladies as well!


Joy Comes in the Morning: Coloring Through Infant Loss & Miscarriage
12.99

If you have experienced a miscarriage, still birth, or infant loss- this coloring book is for you!  It also makes a thoughtful gift for a friend going through the devastating loss of a baby. 

This collection of designs forms a beautiful and therapeutic tool for grieving. It provides a creative way to express your grief while meditating on the Word of God and filling your mind with truth.

It is a beautiful collection of over 25 inspiring pages designed by artists from Alaska to Hawaii, from East Coast to West! The pages include a variety of styles, ink drawings, and digital creations. Many of the artists have experienced miscarriage or infant loss, and on the back of each page they share encouragement for the grieving heart.

*Also available on Amazon Prime!

Free Phone Backgrounds while ttc

Our amazing Hailee Seiwert, who does most of our graphics, put a few FREE phone backgrounds together for you! No logos or sales pitch here. Just images to remind you that God is near to the brokenhearted and that the joy of the Lord is your strength! 

We want to encourage you to fill your mind with truth during National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month (PAIL).

If you have experienced the loss of a baby, we are so so sorry. Many of us on the I Am Fruitful team have experienced loss as well, and we are here for you. Click the link below to submit your prayer request and our dedicated prayer team will lift you up in prayer for 4 weeks!

Simply click on the image and click save. Then go to your phone settings and make the image your background!

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Today is the DAY!!

We are excited to share with you that I AM FRUITFUL is participating in Communities Foundation of Texas’s ninth annual North Texas Giving Day, which is TODAY!  This is  a one day online giving extravaganza to benefit non-profit organizations and ministries that are dear to our hearts.  Last year, more than 2,500 organizations in 16 counties came together to celebrate North Texas Giving Day and raised over 37 million dollars! We invite you to join the movement and help us raise funds on September 14.

Here are some of the ways we plan to impact our community:

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  • Send out MORE Baby Loss Care Packages than ever before
  • Develop and launch curriculum for churches across the nation to support and equip couples going through infertility
  • Provide more free devotionals and resources to our community
  • Speak and share truth at events around the country
  • Increase the reach of our Prayer and Prophetic Teams
  • Launch our Words of Encouragement Program
  • Bring on a staff member
  • Host a fundraiser

As you know, our organization was created to inspire hope in those who are trying to conceive, dealing with infertility, or suffering through loss and miscarriage. The North Texas Giving Day helps us provide even more services to North Texans. Our desire is to become a leading resource for Christian couples trying to conceive. We are on a mission to shine God’s light and truth so brightly into the infertility community that it cannot be ignored! Can we count on you to help us take things to the next level?

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Here are some of the ways your gift will make an impact:

  • $15 could provide a Baby Loss Care Package to a grieving momma
  • $50 could provide 12 ladies with a copy of Joy Comes in the Morning
  • $89 could sponsor a lady to attend an infertility conference
  • $100 takes care of about 2 months of our in-person group needs
  • $200 allows us to assemble 16 more care packages
  • $500 helps us launch our group curriculum in churches across the country

Partner with us TODAY!

We are so excited to be participating in North Texas Giving Day this year!! Testimonies are constantly rolling in of God's faithfulness and how I Am Fruitful has made an impact!

Here are some of the things we plan to impact our community:

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  • Send out MORE Baby Loss Care Packages than ever before
  • Develop and launch curriculum for churches across the nation to support and equip couples going through infertility
  • Provide more free devotionals and resources to our community
  • Speak and share truth at events around the country
  • Increase the reach of our Prayer and Prophetic Teams
  • Launch our Words of Encouragement Program
  • Bring on a staff member
  • Host a fundraiser

We need your support to accomplish these plans!! You can schedule your gift TODAY by clicking below!

This is HUGE!

We are so excited to announce that  I AM FRUITFUL will be included in North Texas Giving Day as a non-profit this year! The potential is HUGE!!

If you are new to I Am Fruitful, we provide resources, groups, support, and encouragement to couples struggling with infertility and going through infant loss and miscarriage. We steward our funds as if they are our own, and we desire to glorify God with every dollar.

North Texas Giving Day is September 15, and we need your help in spreading the word! If you have struggled to grow your family, you KNOW how isolating, lonely, and desperate that season is. We are making a mark in the Kingdom and in this community! 

Here are a few things we're doing to support this community:

  • Baby Loss Care Packages are sent out when we hear of a loss. 
  • Coloring Books provide a tangible resource during grief.
  • In-person Group is a place for growth, encouragement, and fellowship.
  • We give free resources, including around 1,000 downloads of our free devotional.
  • Reach over 14,000 people DAILY through social media encouragement.
  • Speaking and sharing the truth at events around the country.
  • Prayer and Prophetic Teams pray for specific needs and share words of encouragement.

Your donation MATTERS! It helps us to provide care packages, it allows us to continue offering prayer teams and groups and free resources. It helps to bring AWARENESS! It allows us to grow and expand our impact.

When you give via NorthTexasGivingDay.org, your donation goes further with bonus funds and prizes. All donations scheduled between September 7th and 13th or made between 6am and midnight on September 14, 2017 qualify. Your donation triggers opportunities for your I Am Fruitful to win prizes rewarded at random or for the highest number of donors! This year every dollar given up to $10,000 will be multiplied with bonus funds when donors give online through NorthTexasGivingDay.org. 

Here are 2 simple ways you can help:

  • Set a reminder and schedule a gift on September 7th or give on September 15th!
  • Share this link on social media and let your friends know what this means to YOU. Share your story, your struggle, or how I Am Fruitful has encouraged or supported you!

Friendship through infertility

by Emily Allen (of Kindred Mom)

We are in her kitchen, washing dishes between conversations with the various women who have dropped by for an evening of jewelry-making and friendship-forging. For years, we have been bringing women together for fellowship and camaraderie, playing to both of our strengths—her as a hostess, me as a deeper-conversations sort. She nervously tells me she thinks she might be pregnant. She hasn’t tested yet, but she has a hunch this could be the month. My heart swells with excitement for her. They’ve been trying for a while, but haven’t stressed about it. Both are eager to welcome a baby.

A few days later she tells me.

“Not this month,” she sighs. I’m sorry, I say, and I mean it. She’d be the best mom.

A few weeks later, it is me that has pink lines for the fourth time. I’m a little timid about telling her because it is uncomfortable when mom-with-multiple-other-children tells friend-who-is-still-waiting-for-one that we will be having our fourth baby in March. Still, she smiles and hugs me, and cheers me all through the pregnancy.

Still no pink lines for her.

For months, we pray and cry, and I fumble my way through trying to support her, always feeling like I come up short because I can’t fix the situation. I can’t do much except listen and pray and continue tenderly walk through the waiting along with her.

I give birth and try to figure out the chaos of four kids in my house. Two boys and two girls. It’s all so perfect, everyone says. Surely we’re done. I think we are for a stretch of months until I hear God asking me to surrender my plans. I will, I say to Him. I will receive what You give, Lord, even if that means another pregnancy, and another round of that humbling place of giving my body to the very challenging task of childbirth. I pray and try to encourage my sweet friend who is still waiting and still hoping with the best attitude she can muster.

Still no pink lines for her.

Over a year goes by when a call comes, and she says, “I’m pregnant!”

I cry with joy and the next week I make a similar call back to her and say, “I’m pregnant too!”

She is having a baby! My number five is on the way. We’re excited for each other, and it all feels so wonderful to take this journey together since we’ll be due in the same month.

She’s 11 weeks and eager to see her baby on ultrasound at her OB appointment. I’m a week behind her and feeling the nausea and exhaustion of the first trimester. I’m waiting for her call to gush about the little bean-baby she is growing, except when she calls, she is suddenly solemn.

“There is no heartbeat."

I am dumbfounded. Stunned. Reeling.

“I’m sorry,” I say several times, unable to find any other words while she cries on the other end of the line. It seems unfair that I would be carrying another child, my fifth, while her hopes are crumbling with the loss of the baby she wants, but will never hold this side of heaven.

I feel powerless to help her through the grief, but I stay close, hoping to hold her up as I’m able. I make a necklace with her baby’s would-be birth month stone (the same month I will later give birth myself) and give it to her in a city park where we meet up for my kids to run wild on the play structure so we can have just a few minutes to talk. I feel unsure that it will help at all, but I feel like if I can’t acknowledge the life that she has carried and lost, awkward as it seems, that I would not be loving her well. She says she thinks of this baby as hope; hope that God hears her. Hope that this is not the end of the story. Hope that one day, she’ll be through this valley to a sweeter, more joyful place.

I am conflicted for months. I struggle to accept the loss of her baby while my baby is growing safely in my womb. How can I rejoice in the life I carry when my dear friend weeps through years of infertility and now this heartbreaking loss? Every time I pass my weekly gestational milestones, I think about her loss. I feel guilty that I am not bonding with my baby.  

Over the years, other friends who struggle with infertility distance themselves from me. I understand why, but I always feel sick about it. What can I do? If given the opportunity, I would journey with them too. It’s too painful to be around you and your beautiful children, they say. I feel sad that I can’t care for them in their difficult days the way I desire to.

But this friend didn’t distance herself. She pressed in. She showed up to my kids’ birthday parties, and she came to my house to care for my other four children while I gave birth at home to my fifth little love. She sat upstairs with my kids, watching a movie at higher-than-normal volume to muffle the noise of me screaming out a nine-pound baby downstairs in our finished basement. She was the first person to see me after that birth and held my newborn daughter less than an hour after her arrival. I showed up for her throughout the seasons too--in different but equally important ways.

We embraced each other through everything, and our friendship has surprised me.

A few years later, I now have six kids, and my sweet friend is now the mother of 2 little ones, a boy and a girl—the miraculous answers to years of prayer and waiting.

A friend loves at all times—in the valleys and at the mountain tops. We’ve seen both, and continue to be beautifully enriched by the friendship we share.


Emily Sue Allen is the founder of Kindred Mom, a collaborative blog and podcast dedicated to helping moms flourish in motherhood. She is a contemplative, creative soul who celebrates the beauty of a humble, handmade life and deeply values the power of encouragement. She lives with her husband and six kids in the Pacific Northwest, and personally blogs at lightandloveliness.com. She invites you to connect with the Kindred Mom community on Instagram or Facebook.

Find her on Social Media:

FB: https://www.facebook.com/kindredmom/

Kindred Mom Twitter: https://twitter.com/kindred_mom

Kindred Mom IG: https://www.instagram.com/kindred_mom/

Personal IG: https://www.instagram.com/emily_sue_allen/


Check out this amazing resource to dig into God's Word!


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HI everyone!

My name is Ashley aka @magmagandme.

Summer is a fun time in the Bible Journaling world! So many things we see remind us of God's love for all of us.

Over at MAGNOLIAMAGENTA.COM we have splashy happymail exchanges, encouraging embellishment kits, drawing tutorials and monthly Bible Journaling Kits that will help you dig into God's word! Here is a peek at some of our goodies in action.

 

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Lauren here! As you know, we've got several weeks of creative inspiration planned for you!! We want to encourage you to tap into your creative side as you learn to worship God in different ways. It's also a really fun distraction if you're in a season of waiting or sadness.

If you want to start Bible journaling or take your creativity to a new level– I highly recommend EVERYTHING Ashley has on her website. It's all high quality and has completely inspired my creativity. I bet it will inspire you as well!! If you want to start Bible journaling, MagnoliaMagenta.com is a great place to start!


The Word Comes Alive

by Jess Conn

I will never forget the day I saw Lauren post about this amazing journaling bible called, The Message Canvas Bible, by Eugene H. Peterson. Immediately I began to feel a stir in my heart that I needed to invest in one of these bibles. You see, I am one of those girls that always had a journal. I would journal pictures, stories, sermon notes, and things the Lord was telling me. After having children, I started to get behind on my journaling and I just knew this bible was something that would get me back on track!

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That night I randomly mentioned to my husband that I was very interested in having one these bibles. I figured it would be great a Christmas present or birthday present and wasn't expecting him to get it anytime soon. My sweet husband, Brandon, just smiled and nodded and agreed that it would be perfect for me. Literally the NEXT DAY Brandon came home with a bag. He told me to open it. It was my own journaling bible!!!! I cried tears of joy and was so excited to dive into this new journey.

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This year one of my goals was to spend more time learning and meditating on scripture but at the same time I was having a VERY hard time getting motivated as well as remembering them. Since I am a visual learner I often struggle with just hearing the verses. I need to see them, write them, and meditate on them. Once I started coloring the verses in my bible, they came to LIFE! Every detail of the picture helped engrain the verse in my mind. As I colored the verse I would say it over and over and I felt a love for the Word come alive in me again. It's amazing how God used a simple tool such as map pencils and paper to make His word come alive in me.

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I'll never forget when God reminded me of something very sweet and delicate. I was coloring every little detail on my verse and I suddenly felt this overwhelming feeling of how God cares for EVERY detail of our lives.  I know we hear this all the time but it finally felt real in my heart!  He does care! The first verse I colored was, "You're the God who see me" from Genesis 16 (msg).  Immediately, He laid this Psalm 139:14 on my heart.

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."

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I could already see how He was bringing verses to my mind and weaving the Word together in my heart.  It truly is amazing how much the Lord cares for EVERY detail of our lives and that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. I'm so thankful He led me to this bible and that my excitement and desire for the Word has been strengthened.

Worship can come in many forms and I challenge you to find what stirs your heart as you mediate and learn from the Bible. For me it was simply coloring and enjoying my time in the Word. This Bible has changed the way I read scripture, the way I meditate on scripture, and the way I remember scripture.

 

Prayer:

Thank you Lord for giving us many ways to worship you and learn your Word. May our lives be continually filled with worship for you. Stir in our hearts a desire to know you more. We love you Lord and thank you for your many blessings. Amen

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Lauren here! I'm so grateful to my friend Jess for taking the time to share her heart! I love that the Word came alive for her again after she began Bible journaling!! Over the next few weeks, we'll be focusing on our creativity and how it can be used to worships and grow closer to God! I'll post a link below so you can find a good Bible and join us!!

Stay tuned, because we'll be posting a journaling challenge soon!! Check out our coloring book below!