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Prince Charming

Words of Life / Salvation Army
The Truth Network Radio
August 9, 2020 2:00 am

Prince Charming

Words of Life / Salvation Army

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August 9, 2020 2:00 am

In this episode, Susie is joined by Major Cristina Murphy. In chapter 5 of Barefoot Cinderellas, Susie discusses the pain of infertility and the grief from a miscarriage. Cristina shares her own testimony and leaves us with the most comforting piece of advice; Don’t let go of hope.

 

Series: Barefoot Cinderellas

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Hi, this is Bernie Dake. Welcome to the Salvation Army's Words of Life. Welcome back to the Salvation Army's Words of Life, and welcome back to you, Cheryl. Thank you.

It's good to be here, Bernie. I have enjoyed being in the studio with you, talking specifically about Major Susie Erickson's book, Barefoot Cinderella's. Yes, it has been inspirational. It's been powerful and so relevant to so many of our listeners, and we're so grateful for Susie to share her stories and others to join her along the way.

Absolutely. As we continue our series, Barefoot Cinderella's, today Susie's joined by Salvation Army Officer Christina Murphy. She and Susie talk about the pain of infertility, miscarriage, and the incredible journey of adoption. This is a powerful story, so we're going to get right to it.

Good morning. I'm Major Susie Erickson with the Salvation Army, and today in the studio, I have Major Christina Murphy, who is a good friend of mine. We are both women who did not come into motherhood the traditional or easy way. Is that right, Christina?

That's right. And I share my story about the loss of our son, baby Neil, in Chapter 5, Prince Charming of Barefoot Cinderella's. But Christina, you have your own silent heartaches that you have carried into motherhood as well. Could you share some of your story with us today?

Yes, I would love to. We got married in, it seems so long ago, 1999. And after five years of marriage, we decided to start a family. After a few months of that, we realized that I was having trouble, you know, getting pregnant.

So, you know, normal things. I went to the doctor and I get checked up and I started my first fertility treatment. It was a span of seven years of trying with three different doctors, five fertility treatments in two different cities. And that came to a point that after the fifth fertility treatment didn't work, we have to sit back and look at our life and to decide what we're going to do next.

Right. At the very beginning, when my husband and I, you know, talk about planning a family and when we started facing the struggles, he was very open about adoption from the very beginning. But I was not. I wanted the experience of the pregnancies, the pregnancy, the process. I wanted the experience of giving birth, having that baby, this is my baby. And it came to a point that we had to decide, or for me especially, to be content with whatever the Lord has for our life.

If it was not children at all or whatever. But I had to, because there was always going to be another treatment. Right. You know, there was always going to be something else. And do we continue? I mean, it's been seven years. Do we continue?

And how much can we invest? Exactly. And we just decided that was done. We said, we're just going to stop. And if this is what the Lord has for us, that's fine. We have a happy marriage. We have a very blessed ministry. And the other big change that happened right then was that we moved again. We moved from Oklahoma to Tampa, Florida, to be the DYSS in Florida. And that was a big change in our life. So we kind of decide, well, let's be content with this.

Let's be content with not having children at this time. Be honest with God in your prayers. He really knows how you're feeling. He really knows way deep inside your heart, in your mind, what you're thinking, what you're feeling in your heart, even the anger you feel sometimes. He knows all of that.

So I was just being honest. And I told God, okay, if you want me to adopt, I need a sign. And my husband and I have not talked about adoption for over, you know, three or four years. So I told the Lord, I say, if you really want me to adopt, if this is what you want me to do, I want my husband to bring it up once, one more time.

If he does that, I will say yes, and we will do it. And how long did it take before he brought it up? Not long. Not long, right?

Not long. So that was in the fall of 2009. And I remember it was like January and we were driving and my husband said, you know, I've been thinking about this with the earthquake that happened in Haiti, there are going to be a lot of children up for adoption.

Oh, there you go. And I'm like, I started bawling. I started crying in the car. And I had to explain my husband why. So I told him what had happened, how I had prayed about exactly these words.

And I had to, and I told him, okay, I'm ready. I'm ready to start the adoption process. Your journey didn't end there, did it?

No, it started a new journey actually of two more years. I did some research and I found a small Christian adoption agency in Ormond Beach, Florida, contacted them and we started the process. And this is a tedious process at the beginning.

It's a lot of paperwork, a lot of interviews, a lot of meetings. And we went with open minds, open hearts to whatever the Lord gave us. You know, we didn't have a choice of kids. We just, whatever the Lord gave us, we were very open. So we started that process and we got a phone call that they had a baby for us, but our paperwork was not finalized yet. Oh, wow. And the baby was due in September. We had a month. So everything in your heart's telling you we're coming to the end of this journey.

Yes, this is the one. The Lord has answered every prayer. Everything has worked out perfectly. So I was able to be in the delivery room for 13 hours. I saw the baby born. I got to feed him the first time.

We named him. And then the next morning we went to the hotel. The next morning we were going to pick him up and bring him home, right? And as we were getting dressed in the hotel that morning, we got a phone call. And the phone call said the mom changed her mind. And that was... And your heart broke all over again. Yes. It was nothing that I was expecting, even thought about, though that it was mentioned in the process, in the orientation process, but you never think it's going to happen to you.

Wow. So after that, we had two more opportunities to adopt. And the same thing happened after the baby was born.

They call us that. The mother changed her mind as well. In the state of Florida, after the mother gave birth, by law, she had 48 hours to make the final decision. So those 48 hours felt like eternity every time.

Yes. In a span of, you know, nine months, all these roller coasters. By then, he's been almost a year since, you know, we started the paperwork, this March of 2011. And all our paperwork expired. So we started to start all over again. Oh, no. So it's just something new that is so easy to quit in those moments.

Yeah. But I always came back out of hope. That never left me that this will happen someday. So we started the process all over again in March of 2011. And around the same time, August, we get another phone call that there was another baby that the mother has chosen us.

Something very interesting happened. We were not in the pool for adoption because our paperwork has expired. But these moms saw our picture. And they say, I want this family. But they told, they are not ready. But you say, I want this family. Oh, wow.

So, okay. So they called us and told us. And we kind of processed the paperwork a little bit quicker. And they told us the baby was due in October.

But we got a big surprise. The baby came a month earlier. The day before we were supposed to meet the mom, the baby was born. And he was a preemie, right?

He was a preemie. So we packed everything and went to the hospital, got there about 7 p.m. and met the mom. This is always a difficult time, you know, because you're about to take her baby. That's never easy. That's never easy.

I see the love in their eyes and the pain of having to let go. And you don't always know their story of how this child came to be. And you don't know what her life journey has been.

But here you are. Grace has brought you to this intersection of her life. And she's about to entrust you, honestly, with the greatest gift that God's given to her.

I remember it was a camp when I got the phone call. And it was the caseworker. And you can always tell if she was going to give you bad news or good news because of the tone of her voice. So she say, congratulations, Mrs. Murphy.

The mom signed the papers. And your heart rejoiced. I literally collapsed. I got on the floor on my knees and I started thanking the Lord and crying. And then I had to run and tell my husband, find him and tell him. And that night we went back to the hospital and held our son in our arms. Well, you have quite a journey that you've been on as a mom.

And we know that our journeys never end as moms. But what would you say to that husband and wife out there who are where you and John were and are desperately wanting a child and going through that roller coaster every month, what would you say to them? Surround yourself with people that will at times carry you through this process.

People that will support you, that pray with you, that you can come and just cry. You need to talk to people that have been going through the same experience because they can give you good advice. Like I said before in your prayers, just be honest with God.

Be honest and tell him what you want. But I think for me, the main thing I learned through this whole process was hope. Don't let go of hope. In the closing of chapter five, I write these words, Remember, life is a paradox. God is doing the refining work for the plans he has for you and the fire you are going through right now. It's easy to lose heart in a hopeless situation, but don't let the enemy order you to stop dreaming. Pursue your hopes and dreams knowing God can do infinitely more than you would ever dare to ask or hope. Thank you, Christina, for joining me today and for sharing your story.

It's a story that inspires, and it's a story that gives hope, particularly for those who feel like they're in a hopeless situation in their life right now. The Salvation Army's mission, Doing the Most Good, means helping people with material and spiritual needs. You become a part of this mission every time you give to the Salvation Army. Visit salvationarmyusa.org to offer your support, and we'd love to hear from you. Email us at radioatuss.salvationarmy.org. Call 1-800-229-9965 or write us at P.O.

Box 29972, Atlanta, Georgia, 30359. Tell us how we can help. Share prayer requests or share your testimony. We would love to use your story on the air. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes or your favorite podcast store, and be sure to give us a rating. Just search for The Salvation Army's Words of Life. Follow us on social media for the latest episodes, extended interviews, and more. And if you don't have a church home, we invite you to visit your local Salvation Army worship center. They'll be glad to see you. This is Bernie Dake, inviting you to join us next time for The Salvation Army's Words of Life. You
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