I’m approximately 10 weeks into my fifth pregnancy. Security should lie around the corner, after all your chances of miscarrying drop significantly after week 12. Unfortunately, I am not only one of the many women who have miscarried during their first trimester, I have alsomiscarried during my second. I have crossed that coveted 12 week marker and painfully walked out of my 17 week Dr.’s appointment having seen a lifeless baby girl on a grainy ultrasound screen whom I would never have the privilege to raise.
For those keeping track, that means I have had one early miscarriage at 8 weeks, two perfectly healthy baby boys, and then a late miscarriage at 17 weeks. That’s two for two. That’s two perfect, bubbling, adorable little boys and two tiny babies who never made it. That’s scary.
It’s scary because we have always dreamt of having a large family (not Duggar large, but large) and the thought of experiencing another, possibly even multiple more miscarriages in the future is torturous. My mind sweeps through the very real memories of physical pain and ends with the vivid, breathless, heart pounding, soul pain that accompanies each loss. Will future babies be lost? Will this one I am carrying now?
The woman who miscarries has a metaphorical rug pulled out from under her. Suddenly “statistics” and “chances” mean nothing because she has been on the wrong side of the numbers–she’s been the one in four women who loses her baby. Suddenly, and horrifically she realizes that her baby’s life is not guaranteed and there is nothing she can do about it. There is no way she can possibly control the outcome and that can be a frightening realization.
Today I would like to share some thoughts on a very important truth and how it applies to the woman who fears pregnancy. It is a truth that has been my hope and my rock through the most difficult of times and is all that I can cling to as I walk this rode of pregnancy. It is the truth of our Lord’s complete sovereignty.
Our good God is in control.
The world puts its hopes in statistics, but the Christian knows that God is in control of the numbers. It is the Almighty King of the Universe who decides when life will begin and end (Psalm 139:16). It is he who gives and he who takes away. It is he who is intimately involved in our lives, both physical and spiritual. The same God who holds the galaxies in his hands gently holds our precious babies as he forms them in our wombs. His control is infinite, reaching from the flaming sun to the tiny heart beats of our unborn children (Colossians 1:17). There is nothing he is unaware of; there is nothing he does not oversee with vigilance. Our bodies and our children’s bodies are a part of his perfect plan and what he does with them has purpose.
“The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the LORD.” (Proverbs 16:33 ESV)
“Since [man's] days are determined, and the number of his months is with you, and you have appointed his limits that he cannot pass…” (Job 14:5 ESV)
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28 ESV)
The absolute sovereignty of God would be a terrifying thing in and of itself if it weren’t for the truth of his absolute goodness. If he were not a God who could be trusted, then what hope, what joy could be found in walking the path of the unknown only to be met with his unloving providence? And yet, we who have suffered loss, we who dread the sorrow of another miscarriage can smile at a future meticulously planned out for our good, for the good of those around us, and for the glory of his name, even if it means losing another child.
“Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Psalm 34:8 ESV)
Our Heavenly Father who crushed his beloved Son for our salvation does not hold back good gifts without reason.
“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32 ESV)
“No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.” (Psalm 84:11 ESV)
The knowledge of the Lord’s loving sovereignty demands our trust. There is a daily battle that must be won on our knees as we seek the grace of the Savior to overcome our fears of the future. There is a moment by moment surrender of our own “plans” and “dreams” to the one who is infinitely wiser than we are. Our hearts must beg the Author of our faith to give us hearts to cry out with the psalmist:
“I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’” (Psalm 91:2 ESV)
As we draw near to the Lord daily, speaking to him with honest hearts of our hopes and desires for our little ones, we must also ask him for the courage and strength to give them up if asked. We must ask for him to grant us the trust that we lack, even if the darkest of nights comes yet again. In this sweet communion, this real and continual exchange between the Lord and his children our eyes will be drawn away from our circumstances and toward our good and sovereign Lord who loves us with an everlasting and unmerited love. As the Holy Spirit intercedes for us, speaking the words we are afraid to even speak, he will help us to see that our true treasure is knowing God, not in the gifts he gives or withholds.
God Moves in a Mysterious Way
By William Cowper
God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.
Deep in unfathomable mines
Of never failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs
And works His sovereign will.
Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take;
The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings on your head.
Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust Him for His grace;
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.
His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.
Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter,
And He will make it plain.