Reproductive Health, Infertility, The Church, Our Heart, and Seekers

As you have also probably experienced, we have known some couples who have had trouble getting pregnant. Unfortunately, some have never been able to have babies. My heart and prayers go out to those couples who have struggled with this issue. Others, after making some changes in their life, were able to reproduce.

Around half of the instances when a couple cannot conceive, it is a result of male infertility. UPMC (a conglomeration of Pittsburgh medical centers) published an article addressing this:

Factors that negatively affect sperm development and motility include drug and alcohol abuse , diabetes , and bacterial infections. Environmental factors include toxic exposure to chemicals or radiation and overheated testicles. The reasons for many cases of low sperm quality go unresolved. As a matter of routine, many fertility clinics suggest that men trying to conceive should wear boxer shorts instead of briefs or tight-fitting underwear.

A WebMD article, “Getting Pregnant: Easy Ways to Encourage Fertility,” talked about increasing fertility and gave these tips. ()

If you’re having trouble getting pregnant but you're not quite ready for fertility treatments, there are things you can try on your own.

1. Eat Healthy – We had friends who were able to conceive after changing their diet.

2. Weight Control – Either high or low weight can hamper productivity. We had another friend who lost some weight and was able to conceive when she previously could not.

3. Reduce Stress – Unhealthy stress reducers like alcohol and smoking hurt fertility.

They had more but we are not a science blog. You can check out the link on your own if you would like.

The key here is that reproduction problems are due to a problem within our bodies. It might not be pleasant to say; nobody wants to admit they are unhealthy. But the stark truth is that a couple who is having trouble conceiving can oftentimes fix the problem in their body that is preventing reproduction. The unfortunate thing is most people do not want to change their body and would prefer to rely on the quick fix of drugs. That works for many people having fertility problems, but there is not a quick fix for spiritual problems that are prohibiting us from reproducing.

Our spiritual health might be preventing us from being contagious disciples and churches. No drug has been manufactured that we can take for spiritual reproduction if we refuse to be the people that God wants us to be. He wants us to make disciples of those around us and to be the type of people that he can add seekers to, but that is just a side effect of us being the people God wants us to be.

Jesus taught that if we seek, we will find. I believe he honors that teaching to the point of it being a promise. If we seek, or if someone else seeks, God will reveal himself to us or them. If we want to be involved in that work, we need to make sure that we have a heart surrendered to God that God wants to send a seeker to. Oftentimes, we hold back areas of our life. We resemble the Pharisees of the Jesus’ time who were worried about outward appearance while not having surrendered insides. We have yet surrendered our lives completely to God. We cannot utter the words that Paul wrote when he said, "I urge you to imitate me."

When it comes down to it, God adds to the church. When we add to the church it will not stick. We can add through guilt, manipulation, extravagant shows, and coercion. But when God adds, he adds because he wants the seeker to be surrounded by the people who can be imitated. There are seekers out there that God wants to plug in to healthy churches and have them surrounded by faithful followers. Are we the type of people that God wants to add to?