This is the first post about the different assurances that I found in Jesus as I moved through grief toward healing after my Miscarriage.
Hope After Miscarriage?
Hope is one of those words I have taken for granted all my life. I used it flippantly multiple times a day as I casually discussed what I wanted for breakfast, “I hope we still have cream cheese for the bagels” or when shopping, “I hope they have my size”. But, rarely did I say, Jesus, my only hope is in You.
It was not until after the first miscarriage that I started to wonder why I all of a sudden was unable to have a healthy pregnancy. I could not understand what could possibly be wrong with me. I began to wonder if we should try again or if maybe this was a sign that we were done.
Another miscarriage brought more questions and I stuffed my grief because I felt like I did not deserve to grieve my 2 first-trimester losses. I did not want to be angry with God, but in more than one way, I think I was. I was angry that I had the first miscarriage. I was angry that it happened a second time. I wondered what I had done wrong and went through a list of sins that I might need to repent of.
But with the third loss, this time at 16 weeks with our Lily, when we had finally let our guard down believing that this pregnancy was different, I was completely lost on how to move forward.
I was blindsided.
Jesus was the only one I could turn to during the delivery of my sweet baby that I knew was deceased. And in that turning, He started to minister to me and reveal to me all that He had waiting for me if I would just give my grief, disappointment, and anger to Him.
So as I left the hospital, pretty positive I never wanted to try to get pregnant again and thinking that we honestly needed to do something permanent to prevent it…I began to wonder what it would look like if I completely trusted God with (not only all aspects of my life) but especially with my ability to conceive. I had to put all my hope in the Lord and trust Him to know all the desires of my heart, even the ones I do not know for myself.
What Is Hope?
Hope by definition is, “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.” I think the use of the word desire is not by chance. Psalms 37:3-5 says, “Trust in the Lord and do good; Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, and He will do it.”
What are the desires of your heart? For many of us, it may be to have a baby that is healthy and full-term and a labor that is uneventful without trauma. For others, you may not honestly be sure. We may think we know what we want, but often our desires are actually pretty small for the plan God has for us.
But, as I reread this passage and thought more and more about it…I found that two things seemed to really stand out to me as necessary prior to Him doing what He says He will do. The two things are to Trust in Him and to Delight in Him. These two are absolutely essential, especially with a grieving heart. God’s number one desire is to have a friendship with us. A closeness that is so intimate that there is nothing held back.
How many friends do you have that you absolutely can not trust? Friends that you know if you tell them something deeply hurtful and personal that they will blab it all over town before you can scroll through Facebook. I hope that your answer is ZERO. Why? Because that is NOT a friend.
Now, how many friends do you have that you despise to see them coming? You really do not like spending time with them and honestly wish you never had to talk to them again? Again, hopefully, your answer is ZERO.
But, what about your best friend? Is she the one that knows it all? Is she the one that makes you smile when you see the phone light up with her name on it? That is a friend that you delight in and that you know you can trust! That is what God wants to be for us as well!
In thinking back to our passage…if we expect God to give us the desires of our heart…yet we honestly can’t trust Him and are still wrestling with anger and disappointment with Him, then how can we say we have done our part. How can we even begin to develop a friendship with Him?
So how do we move past that angry and disappointed stage to walk in friendship with the Lord you might ask. Honestly, it is easy. We give it all to Him. We are honest about the hurt and the bitterness. We ask Him to take those feelings and to forgive us and help us to heal.
The nice thing about the Lord…He does not remember our sins and hold them against us. When we give them to Him, they are thrown into the sea of forgetfulness to be remembered no more. Now, that is a friend like none other!
This is where I believe Hope comes back in.
You see, Romans 15:13 says, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
When you take the first step to begin trusting in Him, then He will fill you with joy and peace so that you will OVERFLOW with hope!
But, the really amazing thing is, you do not have to do this alone. If you will first ask Him to help you trust Him, he will do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask. He will help you extend your heart to trust Him. And once you have taken that step, He will begin to fill your heart with joy and peace so that you begin to overflow with hope by the Holy Spirit who is living inside you.
So, even though all of this sounds really good on paper, how do we truly begin to experience this hope in the midst of our grief?
Jesus Is Our Hope
In short, we must understand that Jesus is our hope. Without Jesus, we are absolutely unable to truly begin to heal from our loss and have hope for a reconciliation someday with the one we are grieving. By putting our faith in Christ, we are beginning the journey to deep intimacy and friendship like we have been talking about above.
We also need to realize that Jesus experienced grief, pain, anger, questioning, etc. while He was here. He walked on this earth so that He could fully empathize with everything that we would go through and so that we would know that we can trust Him to understand. Not only that, while He hung on the cross, He looked to comfort his own mother because He knew the grief that she would face after His death.
There is no other one who can more powerfully relate to our pain and heal our wounds than Jesus.
Isaiah 61:1-3 foreshadows Jesus’s coming and lists multiple ways He will comfort His children:
- He was sent to bind up the brokenhearted
- comfort all who mourn
- provide for those who grieve in Zion
- bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes
- give the oil of joy instead of mourning
- give a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair
One of my favorites in this list is that He will bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes. The word bestow means to present as an honor, right or gift. So the crown of beauty He has for us is our right…sorrow and sadness are not the legacies He has for us. The ashes represent grief and sorrow. When a person was in mourning in biblical days, they would smear ashes on their head as a symbol of their sorrowful state. Jesus will take away those ashes (the grief and mourning) to bestow a crown of beauty.
Keep Your Hope in Him
In Lamentations 3:20b-26 Solomon says, “and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.’
The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.”
We can be assured that when we are grieving if we will just turn our hope back to Jesus and remember the promises He has given us, we will not be left where we are. He is faithful and good to those who hope in Him.
So with this, we can now understand that first and foremost, Jesus came to walk out life on this earth with all the emotions and troubles that we will experience so that we know He empathizes with us. He also has a deep desire to have a true friendship with us where we trust and delight in Him so much that we take every thought, care, happy moment and grief-stricken tear to Him. So that in our relationship with Him, we will find a renewed hope in Him and His future for us, over and over again.
I am so thankful for this hope I have found because, without Him, I would have already perished!
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all.
Do you know Jesus as your personal Savior?