My mother wrote recently:
I have saved, on Facebook, all of the posts you wrote before Nathanael was born. I have been reading through them and remembering our little Nathanael. Also looking through his beautiful photos, some tears have been shed but I feel ok, nice to remember and miss him, gorgeous baby never will I forget him, I think of him on a daily basis with much love. Thought I’d share my night with you. Love you all so much xoxo
At the time I received this message I was pondering what to write, but I was also focusing on the crucifixion event of Jesus – his unparalleled suffering.
So precious it is; to share in this grief and to honour it so well in the considering of others who also have been affected.
My mother, herself, with my father, suffered a stillbirth as we have. Her tears and her grief mean so much. And knowing my wife’s parents would never have wanted her to have to be exposed to such a thing rents them asunder, too. We have all been undone. But to be undone is, itself, the preciousness of blessing only fully comprehended in eternity.
There is the state of grief that I know personally that is both deep and beautiful; an abyss I may be lost in yet a thoroughly wonderful abyss. Such a fathomless pool might appear scary on approach, but wading in reveals something alluring and healing.
Sharing in our grief these ways – enjoying the opportunity to let tears be as they would – is a testimony to the fact that if grief (or loneliness or despair, etc) can’t defeat us, what can?
Nothing can defeat us. We are made for this journey in the sharing of it truthfully. As realities hit us hard we have everything we need to deal with such realities because of courage, humility, and the grace that is ever sufficient, notwithstanding the love of dear family and friends.
Nothing can defeat us, which is precisely the point of Romans 8:31-39. If we have nothing to fear about humanity or life (and we don’t) we have a glorious key for the living of an incredible life; an abundant life.
Our Nathanael connected us. God used a baby who never knew life on the outside for his glory. God used a baby who may have been quite profoundly impaired. God used a person who never drew a breath. And such as it is, we are all profoundly affected – very positively.
God touches us irrevocably in our grief and makes such an experience so enduring we cannot go back to life as it was. We would not want to, for we have been enriched and enhanced.
There is such a worthy compensation for what we endured that was inconceivably unconscionable.
A precious and holy grief doesn’t only break us; it ultimately reveals us, making us new.
It’s better to grieve together than alone. Grieving together is growing together.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.