Alabama Baptist pastor’s wife finds God forever faithful following miscarriage of first child

Alabama Baptist pastor’s wife finds God forever faithful following miscarriage of first child

The greatest loss I have ever experienced was the miscarriage of our first baby 10 weeks into the pregnancy. There are no words to describe the depth of emptiness I felt in the days, weeks and months following my miscarriage, but in the wake of my pain I learned how faithful God really is.

After a year of trying to conceive we were finally expecting our first child. We were beside ourselves with excitement. Then I began to experience some bleeding and went to see my doctor. They performed an ultrasound and discovered that I had miscarried. The news was devastating. I could not wrap my brain around this loss. 

Begging God for help

For days I broke down numerous times a day, sobbing uncontrollably. One minute I would think, “I’m OK,” only to fall apart again. I begged God to make the hurt stop. I just did not see how I was going to survive this kind of pain. To be honest, I didn’t know if I wanted to survive it. I just wanted the aching in my heart to stop.

Well-meaning friends attempted to comfort me. They said things like, “At least you know you can get pregnant” and “at least you weren’t any farther along. It could always be worse.” Really? It could be worse? I couldn’t even imagine that anything could be worse than this loss. Job had friends who tried to help him too. We can learn from them. 

In Job 2:13 we see them sitting with Job, not saying a word. “Then they sat on the ground with him seven days and nights, but no one spoke a word to him because they saw that his suffering was very intense.”  

Job’s friends had the right idea. When someone is in a tremendous amount of pain and grief, it is good to just be there. You don’t have to try to give advice or an explanation. Just grieve with them. Your presence can make all the difference.

There will always be those who try to speak comfort into a difficult situation. After my miscarriage I was given some not-so-great advice by an older woman in the church. She said that because I was the pastor’s wife, I should keep my grief to myself. No one needed to see me “fall apart.” 

I don’t believe she meant me harm, but I took her bad advice to heart. No one knew the desperation, loneliness and depression I felt in the months and years to follow, including my own husband. Everyone thought I was fine because that’s what I told them. I lied. I went through all the stages of grief over and over again for many years. This is not healthy. 

So many times there are no explanations for miscarriages. Trust me — I looked for some reason, a cause for what had happened. There were no answers. In some moments I wondered if God took my baby to punish me for past sins. At other times I assumed something must have been wrong and God was sparing our child. The truth is that this side of heaven, I will never know why we had to endure this loss.

However, one thing I am sure of now is this: God never wastes a hurt. He has used me to minister to many women. Many times it has just been to say, “It’s OK to grieve. You need to mourn.” Because of the misguided advice I was given in the aftermath of my miscarriage, I feel it is important to give families permission to grieve their loss. I also know that grief looks different for every person, so I’m careful not to criticize or question how someone mourns a loss. 

God has taught me so much by learning to depend on Him and His Word. He is forever faithful, as 1 Corinthians 1:9 and many other verses remind us. He also is our refuge. Nahum 1:7 has become a life verse for me: “The Lord is good, a stronghold in a day of distress; He cares for those who take refuge in Him.” 

Trust God

As much as any experience in my life, my miscarriage taught me to trust God with my hurt. Psalm 56:8 tells us God knows every tear that falls from our eyes. It truly is in the valleys that we learn to really trust Christ with everything and lean on Him, to place “all our cares upon Him” (1 Pet. 5:7). 

God is in control. He will use our hurts and deepest losses if we let Him. He will use us to be His feet to go and serve families suffering the anguish of a loss we understand. He will use us to be His hands as we love those who hurt. 

EDITOR’S NOTE — Karen Prickett is a teacher, writer and pastor’s wife. Her husband, Rodney, is pastor of Riddles Bend Baptist Church, Rainbow City. They are parents of three sons: Mackenzie, Mason and Micah.