Two weeks after losing our babies, people have naturally been asking me how I’m doing. Am I still in pain (although physically, I don’t think I ever was), how am I coping, am I in a better place now? Truth be told, even I am surprised at my present emotional state. Like the seed that sprouts and grows without the sower knowing how (Mark 4:26-28), God’s healing has been sprouting and growing in me ever so gently. I cannot tell you how or when it started, I just know that He has brought me here, and yes, it is a better place.
While I appreciate the concern of those who felt the need to say something (admittedly, I don’t think I would have done a better job on the other side of this fence), one line that I heard quite a lot these past two weeks was, “God has a purpose in all this.” We just need to be patient, and remain faithful, and God will reveal the reason behind this painful ordeal in due time.
Like I said, I probably would be saying the same thing had I been in the same awkward position.
“Hey you, I heard! Congratulations! Woohoo!!”
“I had a miscarriage.”
“Oh.” *shrink away*
Sure, I’m quite certain that a few more months down the line, I’ll start to see all kinds of things that wouldn’t, couldn’t have happened had the pregnancy reached full term. Even now, the whole journey from conception to abrupt end has already taught me invaluable lessons on surrender and trust, faith and hope.
But is any lesson this important, to necessitate the raising of a life, only to destroy it? To give amidst such difficult, life-altering circumstances, only to take away once the gift has finally been accepted? Could those two little souls be this dispensable, and could God be this cruel?
In the book of Job, we read about an upright man who was afflicted in every possible way. His words at the beginning of the trials, “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord! (Job 1:21)” was quoted more than a few times to me by well-meaning friends and family. But I wonder if they knew the rest of Job’s story? That as trial after suffering after tragedy came, he eventually reached breaking point, demanding an answer from God, “I cry to You, and You give me no answer; I stand before You, but You take no notice…I hoped for happiness, but sorrow came; I looked for light, but there was darkness (Job 30:20,26).” Disagreeing with what his friends insisted on as the reason behind his misfortune (that all this was punishment for his wrongdoing), he cried out to God to explain Himself. Why this, why me?
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundations? Tell me, since you are so well-informed! Who decided its dimensions, do you know? Or who stretched the measuring line across it? What supports its pillars at their bases? Who laid its cornerstone to the joyful concert of the morning stars and unanimous acclaim of the sons of God?” –Job 38:4-7
This was enough for Job; it shut him up. “You have told me about great works that I cannot understand, about marvels which are beyond me, of which I know nothing. (Job 42:3)”
After experiencing a wound that cuts this deep, I cannot imagine any reason or purpose on earth that will ever justify this pain. And this is why I don’t feel the need to try and look for an explanation–because even if I find it, I don’t think I have the capacity to understand it.
So why stick with God at all?
Because I believe that God is able to touch even the most hurtful, horrifying agony and make something good and beautiful out of it. That, regardless of the Why and How, God proves Himself to be present with us in our suffering. There is a difference between the reason for the trial and the fruits borne out of it. And when we’re talking about innocent lives lost–whether through a miscarriage, a tragic accident, senseless violence, or disease–it is very hard to accept any conceivable reason, any higher purpose that can explain, give meaning, or console.
Because maybe the whole point is not to know the reason why, but simply to know that He knows…and that He feels the hurt with you.