I was sitting in a room with over 200 other women waiting for the conference speaker to take her place on stage. Along with those around me, I settled into my seat, ready with my pen and paper for anything that was note worthy. I grabbed a kleenex out of my bag, just in case. I knew the speaker had a difficult testimony to share, and I wanted to be prepared for the emotions that may creep up without any notice.
As she began her presentation, it was only minutes when I needed to reach for that kleenex. She'd lost a baby just a few short hours after she was born. It was more than any momma's heart should have to bare. After sharing her story, she did the unexpected. She asked women to stand if they had ever suffered a miscarriage, a still birth, or lost a newborn baby. I hesitated only a moment before moving to my feet, chin quivering and tears rolling down my cheeks. I couldn't bring myself to turn around to see how many were standing, but I could tell by the rustle of chairs and see from my peripheral vision that over half the audience was standing in still silence.
As those who stood took their seats again, I had to leave the room. The unexpected stirring and longing in my heart was so strong, I was sure it would overtake me. I hurried to my hotel room where I could release the pressure to my throat and chest, and grieve my losses with an ugly gut retching cry as if my two babes were lost just yesterday.
Grief seems to abide by no time-table. Whether a loss is suffered weeks or years ago makes no difference. We all feel the void in our hearts and in our lives when someone is missing.
We do our best to manage the grief, as our human minds are incapable of understanding why these things happen. God's sovereignty is far above our ability to grasp His plan. But He does offer us comfort. Through many hardships I have faced, I always fall back to 2 Corinthians 1:3:
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God."
Though I don't understand God's plan in miscarriage, premature death, cancer, or depression, I do know that he has commanded me to comfort others who are experiencing the same things that I have endured. I am to share the comfort I received from God with others.
Sisters, your heartache is real. But can I encourage you to share it with others? Talking it out can also be very therapeutic in itself. Part of sisterhood is not only sharing the good times of celebration but also sharing the hard times of grief and loss. This allows others to pray for you, comfort you, and love on you. Sometimes it even gives more meaning to their own loss, as they carry out God's command to "love one another".
YOU are not alone.
Sweet Jesus, you are our Great Physician who can heal all our wounds, both physical and emotional. Please come lay your hand of healing on any grieving mother who visits here today. May she experience your peace that passes understanding. Amen.