Losing a child is, without a doubt, one of the most difficult experiences a person can go through. Dealing with miscarriage as a Christian is a subject not commonly discussed in our churches or social circles. The lack of conversation around this topic can make for an incredibly lonely season of grief. Feeling like no one understands what we are going through leads to hopelessness and depression.
My husband and I have battled the pains of infertility for the last eight years. In summer 2023, we miscarried our first child at five weeks. Losing our sweet baby, Easton Beck Finnegan, caused us to experience a rollercoaster of emotions.
The waves of grief surrounding miscarriage are like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. As Christians, it can be challenging to reconcile feelings of grief and disappointment with a belief in God’s plan for our lives. However cliché it may sound, there really are ways to find comfort and peace during this difficult time.
Steps for Dealing with Miscarriage as a Christian
The first step is giving yourself permission to grieve. Grief can be so painfully debilitating. Our bodies and brains want to go numb as a form of self-protection. I want you to know that not only is it okay to feel, it is necessary. Sadness, anger, and confusion feel different in the wake of a miscarriage. Give yourself permission to feel these emotions and express them in healthy ways, like talking to a trusted friend or counselor, journaling, or praying.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve. For us, the first step towards healing was giving our baby a name that has meaning. We chose Easton Beck for these reasons:
“East”- The direction the sun rises in. Sunrises have always captivated me, reminding me of God’s new mercies daily and reflecting the light of His glory. “Ton” is short for “Tony”, or “Anthony”, in honor of my Papaw who is the best man I’ve ever known.
“Beck” means “by the peaceful/still waters” which reminds us of Psalm 23:
When I read this Psalm, I picture a beautiful scene in my mind. The sound of still waters and beauty of rolling hills in green pastures. It brings me peace to envision sitting there with my baby in my arms, the light of His glory shining on me. The warmth of His embrace like the warmth of the sun. I believe I will live this vision out when I cross into eternity. I cling to this hope. One day, I will hold my baby in my arms, but until then I am comforted knowing that the One who holds me is holding Easton, safe and sound, until my arrival.
That is how I am personally dealing with miscarriage as a Christian.
Walking hand-in-hand with Jesus in this time is essential. God is with us in our pain, and He understands our heartache. He understands every aspect of our humanness. I find great comfort in knowing that, in taking on flesh, Jesus knows exactly how it feels to be human. He has experienced grief, hunger, exhaustion, and joy. In fact, he has experienced more of the human experience than I have- death. Through it all, he never sinned. Instead, He modeled how we should handle those human experiences.
The Word says that he is able to sympathize with our humanness. He is not afraid of our big feelings or our depressive thoughts. Instead, he weeps with us. With the perfect and loving heart of the Father, he holds space for us and embraces us.
Turn to Him in prayer, and seek comfort in His promises of hope and healing. Find solace in passages like the one above. Similarly, Psalm 34:18 brings comfort:
He is faithful. He is waiting for us to invite Him into our pain. All we have to do is turn our eyes toward Him.
Finally, seek support from your community. Talk to other believers who have gone through similar experiences, and lean on your church family for comfort and encouragement. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or accept offers of support, whether it’s a meal, a listening ear, or a shoulder to cry on.
The need for community is a major piece of our hardwiring. We were not meant to do life alone. A strong support system can make all the difference in the midst of chaotic situations. The quality of those who make up our community is much more important than the quantity of people.
When looking for those trusted people, you really want to look for individuals who are emotionally healthy. When we invite people into our “stuff”, it is easy for the “stuff” in others to be triggered or provoked. In times of grief, we (as believers, especially) really need people who can speak wisdom and truth. When we are in a state of being triggered, we are not able to be fully available emotionally.
Additionally, who you surround yourself with matters biblically (Prov. 17:17, 18:24). Those friends who are more like family are the ones you can count on to bear your burdens with you. They are the ones who will pray for you, show up for you, and won’t let you walk this road of grief alone.
Conclusion: How to
Have you ever heard of Tonkin’s Model of Grief? I love the visual below.
“People tend to believe that grief shrinks over time. What really happens is that we grow around our grief.”
Remember that healing takes time, and the road is not always linear. Your pain may never go away, but with time, you can find peace and hope for the future. Developing a daily rhythm of prayer is a great way to center yourself everyday. Preparing ahead is not only smart, it is biblically wise. (More on that here). Dealing with miscarriage as a Christian requires our communion with God. If you are looking for ways to incorporate prayer into your daily routine, check out my previous post here.
Allow yourself to grieve, lean on God, and seek support from those around you. Remember that you are not alone. Praise God for the hope we have in Jesus. One day, you too, mama, will be reunited with your baby in Heaven. Until then, we will walk through the pain together. One day at a time.