Catherine and Zack Gill experienced nine miscarriages that left them confused, hurting, and angry at God. But as they leaned on the Lord, He carried them through some of the hardest times of their lives. In Shiloh, Watermark’s ministry for women and couples experiencing infertility and miscarriage, the Gills found support and care from other couples walking a similar road. Their story is a reminder that no matter what we may endure, the Lord is our ultimate source of peace and comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3-5).
Catherine: “Most of my story is a repeated cycle of anger, frustration, hope, and grief. With each miscarriage, I felt robbed and ripped off by God and my anger toward Him continued to sink deeper. We really wanted to have a baby, and everyone around us seemed to be getting (and staying) pregnant so easily.”
Zack: “It felt like God had us sitting in a gray area. There wasn’t an easy fix for infertility. I was confused about what God was doing with us. I didn’t like it. It wasn’t comfortable. At first, I was the ever-optimist. I was calm. But as time prolonged, in my frustration, I had to decide whom I was going to trust. I had to ask myself, ‘Even if God doesn’t provide children for us, can I still say He is good, He is my God, and He is trustworthy?’”
What was your experience in Shiloh?
C: “When I walked into Shiloh the first time, I was angry. I didn’t want to be vulnerable or open up to other women about my miscarriages. While none of the women had the exact same story as I did, a lot of the root issues were the same. Shiloh is a club that no one wants to be in, but it felt like an exhale to find community with and be around women who had similar experiences.
“The Lord used Shiloh to help me see infertility as a blessing. This was not an overnight process. I had to wrestle with the Lord about who was in control and what I did or did not deserve. I learned to trust Him with our infertility journey and know that He is good and has a plan, regardless of the outcome (Proverbs 3:5-6).”
Z: “Going to Shiloh was one way I surrendered our situation to God. There, I found resources to deal with our experience and ways to support Catherine. Sometimes, men don’t think infertility is as much their problem. We aren’t always emotional in the same ways. We don’t want to get in a room with other guys and talk about our feelings. But I asked the Lord to teach me through this process. I learned how important it was for me to be with my wife and sit with her in this pain. I also learned to deal with my own issues of feeling dissatisfied with the path the Lord has us on and let Him change my heart knowing His ways are better (Isaiah 55:8). He turned my disappointment with infertility into a message to encourage others.
How have you seen the Lord’s faithfulness through your hardships?
C: “One of my biggest struggles through all of this was rejoicing with those who rejoice (Romans 12:15). It was hard for me to rejoice when I saw pregnancy announcements from friends. I felt like I was being ripped off and left behind by God. Through Shiloh, God helped me see that I can be happy for other people and sad about my situation at the same time. I learned that the Lord welcomes my anger, but it is a command to rejoice with others.
“I also learned that God knew how I felt. God sees me and my pain, and He cares (Hebrews 4:15). The Lord brought me to Him in a way I wouldn’t have been able to see Him before, and as I became more familiar with God’s Word and His character, I was comforted. God knows what it’s like to lose a child; He sent His son to die for me.
“At the end of the day, we have ultimately learned that we must pursue the Lord faithfully regardless of our circumstances. After more testing and another doctor’s opinion, we did a treatment that suppressed my immune system and helped us give birth to a baby girl named Audrey. And then a few years later we welcomed another baby girl, Andie. We’re so thankful the Lord gave us two daughters.
“For many, many days the answer to our prayers was, ‘no.’ Prayers in the future may be answered with ‘no,’ but we can praise God through it all.”
Z: “We would never choose to go through that again, but we can see how God has used it. I don’t want to experience hardship or trials, but I do want to grow in my faith so I can trust God more. We may walk through more difficult things in our future, but we know God has been faithful, and we can trust He will be – even if it doesn’t look like we predict or plan.”
A variety of Shiloh events are starting this month, including a Couples Panel Night and studies for both women experiencing infertility or miscarriage and their husbands. Find more information and register.