When I thought about the myriad of ways to best help an infertile person one thing kept running through my mind over and over.
Take her to God.
The pain of infertility, like the journey of the Christian life, can be so cyclical. One day you feel amazing and hopeful. The other you want to curl up in a ball on the floor and cry until there are no tears left.
But taking the infertile person to God can often be a tricky thing. What the infertile woman needs, like I have already said, is not more over-generalizations about her circumstances. And reciting theology to her can come across as that way--even though a healthy theology is necessary for dealing with the sorrow of infertility. But good theology must come before the trial, so you have a sure footing when everything else around you is shifting sand. In the midst of the trial it can sound like pithy one-liners to sensitive ears.
In my miscarriage series, I said that one of the best ways to help your friend in her loss is to know her--really know her. This will give you the opportunity to know when to speak and when to listen. This will give you insight into her soul and help you know what she needs in any given moment. Sometimes the infertile person needs to know that God loves them. Sounds simple, doesn't it? But when your womb is empty, the absence of a dearly longed for baby can feel like the very nature of hatred from God. Assure her that it isn't. Maybe she needs to know that God always keeps his promises. The Bible is full of examples of God keeping his promises to his weary saints. Remind her of that wonderful truth. Maybe she needs to know that infertility doesn't have the final word in her life. Yes, her body (or her husband's body) is broken. Yes, it feels like evil is prevailing over her right now. But it won't be that way forever. The cross is the promise that the evil that seems to be winning right now will one day be eradicated and we will be given new bodies in the new heavens and the new earth.
The reality is that none of these things will take the pain away ultimately. And these aren't concrete answers for every situation. They are merely examples of the varying ways a woman needs to know that God is for her, not against her in her infertility. But what I hope you take away from this short series on helping your infertile friend is that what suffering people need more than anything is God. They need to know that you love them and that God loves them. They need to know that you won't leave them and that God will never leave them. They need to know that you are with them for the long-haul. And so is God.
Infertility is full of complexities. And every case is different. As you seek to help your infertile friend in whatever stage of the trial she is in, ask God to give you the grace to love her well. As I already said, God delights in giving good things to his children. And by his grace, may you be that good thing for your suffering friend.