BAM Family

BAM Family

Friday, January 31, 2014

Miscarriage and Faith: Giving thanks IN…not FOR.

I shuffled into the kitchen, pushing the Kreuig button and my greasy hair behind my ear.

I was awake. I was functioning. I could make eggs. I could feed my kids breakfast before school...

…before I went to lay on the couch for the rest of the day.

It was a few days since "the phone call" and I was in the "wait and see" days of what they call "miscarriage management."

Micah pushed play on our kitchen CD player and Psalty the Singing Songbook's perky voice and camping exploits filled the air.

"In everything give thanks! In every situation! Sing of song of thanks…and praise him from your heart!!!"

"This is such a stupid song," I thought. "There is nothing, NOTHING to be thankful for in this situation. Everything about this sucks. Miscarriage SUCKS!"**

I put plastic plates of eggs in front of my kids and sat down heavily at the table, wincing from pain in my womb and pain in my heart.

Then I glanced over at Silas and he smiled at me...
...and I felt a little nudge in my soul.

Precious little boy. You are such a comfort to me.

I pushed through the fog in my brain and tried to plan my day…dinner tonight? Oh! That's right. Another dear friend was bringing us a meal.

I'm so glad I don't have to cook tonight. Thank you, Lord, for friends and the meal. 

Aaron came into the kitchen and kissed me on the forehead. "Ready to go, boys?"

Thank you for my husband. He has taken such good care of me and the kids. 

"Bye, Mommy!" My twins said as four skinny arms encircled my waist. "See you after school!"
Photo by Sabrena Carter Deal
Thank you for my children. I have three beautiful children who love me. I am blessed. I am blessed

The realization washed over me: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (and Psalty!) says, "In everything give thanks…." not for everything.

I couldn't be thankful for…but I can be, no, I need to be thankful in. 

I need to be thankful….because thankfulness is ultimately trust in God.

In order to be thankful, I must look outside of myself--my pain, my grief--and see that God is still taking care of me. He has still blessed me with so many good things.

He holds my whole life in his hands, both the good and the bad. Thankfulness is recognizing this truth.

I can still give thanks in this situation, and really, in all things. This is the will of God for me.




**I actually googled "Miscarriage Sucks" and came up with some comforting blog posts that used lots of swear words that summed up my feelings quite nicely.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Miscarriage and Faith: Suffering and God's Goodness

It was 20 minutes after I received the phone call that we got the expected knock at the front door. A friend from church was bringing us dinner.

I was still numb from the news: "Your numbers are dropping. I'm afraid…this confirms a miscarriage."

As our friend set the food on the table, we told her what happened.

She was so sorry. She had been praying for us fervently. She had even shared that she had seen a vision of God cradling my womb during her prayers. This had been a great comfort to me.

"Can I pray for you?" She asked.

She slipped her arm around me in our kitchen and we bowed our heads.

"Oh, Lord," she began. "We thank you for your goodness…"

Everything in my soul recoiled.

How could she thank God for his goodness?
This was not good! This was bad, evil,  horrible, a nightmare!
If God was good, then why did my baby die?
I begged God to let the baby live, let the bleeding stop, let the midwife say "We have good news!"

That was the phone call I played over and over again in my mind. I couldn't imagine the alternative.The pain was beyond my imagination.

Yet here I was, in the midst of it.

And she was thanking God for his goodness?

God was not good. Not to me.

Her prayer and God's presence hovered over my soul at that moment and I shoved them away as hard as I could.

I couldn't pray. I had no words. Only deep pain and suffering that I had never experienced before.

Oh, I had suffered, of course. But as a result of my sin, or someone else's. That suffering had a reason, a purifying effect, a course that led me to repentance.

This. This was new. Stark, and bleak, and shocking, numbing and white hot. Suffering that hit me physically and spiritually.

"We know you are a good God…" she prayed.

I almost wanted to laugh. But I couldn't and so I cried.

We know you are a good God. 

I don't remember anything else from her prayer in my kitchen that day. But her words about God's goodness both shocked me and have stuck with me.

We know you are a good God.

I knew, in my head, that God is good. I had repeated those words since I was a child. I had memorized hundreds of verses, could recite every Bible story that spoke to this fact. I had prayed these words myself. I had never doubted God's goodness.

Until now. I doubted in my heart because it was filled with so much pain that there wasn't room for my faith.

But my head knew that God was good. The scriptures came rolling in, the ones I had tucked away for such a time as this.

I heard a song a few days later, a familiar hymn: "His eye is on the sparrow, but I know he watches me."
Source
I basked in the comfort of this image but a moment later was slammed with this truth:

His eye is on the sparrow….but the sparrow still falls. 

And all I can ask is why? Why did he let the sparrow fall? Why did I have a miscarriage?

That was my only prayer: Why did this happen, God?

I don't know why. But I do know he is with me, watching me. And weeping with me.

This is faith--horrible, hard, gut-wrenching faith: God is good.

______________________________

I'll be sharing more of my spiritual journey through suffering and grief in the coming weeks and how God had brought comfort to my heart through this difficult time.

UPDATE: Click on the links below to read about more of my journey.

Sweet Iz: Our Miscarriage Announcement
Giving Thanks IN…not FOR
Walking through the Valley

Thursday, January 16, 2014

"Sweet Iz": Our miscarriage

Your older brother, Micah, named you when you were just a glow in my belly.

"Hi Iz!" he said softly, his hand on my hips, his mouth pressed to my stomach. He planted a kiss near my belly button and then scampered away.

"I'm going to name the baby Iz." He announced, 5 minutes after we told our boys they were going to be big brothers again on December 20th. "I want a baby sister. If it's a boy, I'm going to fuss."

I laughed, reminding him that the baby might not be a girl, and inwardly thinking that I didn't really like the name "Izzy."

But that was the only name you got. It was a sweet name, and full of love and expectation from the big brother you will never know on this side of heaven.

Sweet baby. You left us only a few weeks after we knew you were there. On January 4th, we found out that your soul had slipped away.

We miss you, your mommy especially. Christmas was such a time of hope. I felt like Mary, expecting a child, however small, at such a magical time of year.

Your daddy and I kept looking at each other with wide eyes, saying in hollowed, hallowed tones, "We're going to have FOUR kids. Holy crap."

And we still have four. But not here on earth.

We wonder why this happened, why you won't be joining our family here on earth. I told your big brother Benji that Mommy was very sad that the baby died.

"But Mommy, we still have Silas!" he said.

And that made me smile.

I have three little boys to hold in my arms and one little one to hold in my heart.

We didn't get to know you but your big brother named you.

We miss you, sweet Iz.

You can read more about my journey here: 

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