I am constantly amazed at the lessons I learn from my children! God can speak to me through them in so many ways and this past weekend I've been reflecting on and reminded of the many lessons He's taught me through one of my children in particular.
The child I never held in my hands, but will forever hold in my heart. The little one we lost to a miscarriage 2 years ago today. At the time we'd only known we were expecting for 15 days, but the reality is in those 15 days we came to know this little one as our own - we had dreams for her, hopes for her and a heart full of love for her too.
At times this weekend has been difficult - memories from 2 years ago have come back quite strongly. I recalled the events of that weekend quite vividly and as I did, I found my mind wanting to ask the question. You know, the question that has no answer - "Why?" Again I found myself following the advice Lysa TerKeurst shared in a recent Bible study; the question to ask is "What now?"
So as that thought came to mind, I asked God to show me. "Lord what do I do now? I'm sad and grieving this little one, but yet I know You are good. What do I do now?" There was no voice, but it was as if Iheard, "How was I good in this?"
Before I go on, I want to admit this is still hard and if you're walking in the pain of a recent loss, I know your emotions are raw and the pain is real. You may be thinking there is no good in this (I've been there), but I want to encourage you - circumstances change, life is hard, but GOD is GOOD! Two years later I can say that and if you seek HIM and trust in HIM someday soon you will too.
Now, "How was God good in this?" Well, the first answer that came to mind was my little man Jed - 6 months after our loss, God blessed us with another pregnancy and this October we'll celebrate Jedidiah Jay's 1st birthday!! God is good!
Another lesson my little one has taught me is that God does provide - as memories flooded my mind these past two days I was amazed to see how God provided a listening ear, an encouraging word, a warm embrace, a friend to share my tears, a song to change my perspective, strength to face another day...
He also provided an opportunity for us to grieve as a family. At that time our other kids were 5, 3 and 1, and we didn't explain to them what had happened. After spending the day at their grandma's house because mom needed to rest they came home for the evening and I worked to keep things together as we prepared supper. It was then that we discovered Dorothy, the goldfish we'd had for over 2 years had died. I can remember J.D. and Joy just crying. They crawled onto my lap and we all grieved - them for a fish, but me for the sibling they wouldn't see until this life was done. Those moments were hard, but yet so precious - God is good.
God also provided some answers - answers to the questions, "Was this baby a boy or a girl?" and "What was his or her name?" In April of '09, when I was expecting Jed, we were discussing names and I always came back to Jenae Hope Beran. Jenae means "God has given" and Hope, well that's obvious, so together I thought "God has given HOPE" was very fitting. So needless to say in June when the ultrasound said I was carrying a boy, I was surprised! I was for sure I'd be holding another little girl in the delivery room; a little Jenae Hope actually! I can remember asking God, "What about Jenae?" And He whispered to my heart, I'm already holding her.
Knowing this was good, my baby had a name! But yet it was hard and in a way I grieved all over again. But God is good - He gave me time to grieve; prior to this we'd never even had an ultrasound with our other children. This time the Dr. recommended it and though my husband didn't want to know the sex of the baby, God knew I did. (I did keep the secret!) And I'm thankful HIS ways are higher than mine - you see I don't know how all of these emotions combined with those that accompany a new baby would have all played out. God knew I needed time and He provided.
This little one, Jenae, has also taught me that God really does speak to us and work in ways we never expect or fully understand - the story of her name is proof of that! He is good!
Her little life has taught me that I serve a God who is faithful! He keeps HIS word - when I am weak, He is strong. When I can't, He can. When I fall, He will lift me up. When I'm in need, He will provide. No matter what the situation, I can put my trust in HIM. He is my hope!!
My trip down memory lane has shown me that Psalm 139:10 is true, "even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast." During those first few days and even weeks there were moments I wondered if this was true, but looking back I know it was and better yet still is and will always be!!
One final answer to the question, "How was God good in the worse loss I've ever experienced?" He provided strength and peace I'd never felt before. He drew me to Him, even when at times I tried to push away. He comforted when no one else could! He taught me what HOPE is all about!
Two years ago, because of Him I could say, "blessed be the name of the LORD." And today though my heart still grieves for my little girl and I've experienced first hand how the Lord gives and takes away, it is a privilege and honor to bless HIS name. HE is GOOD! Thank you little Jenae HOPE Beran for allowing Him to use you to teach your mom so much!