Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Grrr! (01/28/10)
TITLE: Misplaced Anger
By Ruth Thoutenhoofd
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These were my parting words to my husband as he left uneasily for work. For the first time in my life I actually felt angry at God and admitted it. It felt kind of satisfying to voice my anger - shocking and satisfying.
I had just “lost” my fourth baby. This one was particularly difficult, since I had truly believed this last baby was a merciful gift sent to heal us after the death of our third loss.
The first two babies were seven weeks and eleven weeks along. The miscarriages were difficult to deal with but not unbearable. We already had two wonderful little boys who kept our lives full. But I really, really wanted a third child and wasn’t ready to give up on the dream. Getting pregnant wasn’t a problem so I was delighted to find myself expecting a baby for the fifth time. And wonder of wonders, he stayed where he belonged for nearly seven months.
I enjoyed my pregnancies. My dream had always been to have a family. I loved an excuse to quit my job as a junior high English teacher and nurture our children full time. I was rarely uncomfortable and only had enough morning sickness to reassure me that I was indeed pregnant. I felt fulfilled.
We always went to visit our family at Christmas and this year was no different. It was an eleven hour trip back across the mountains after a good time with both sides of the family. The trip was going smoothly with little snow. We were talking about stopping for lunch, when suddenly a van hit some black ice, collided with us head-on, and knocked us all unconscious. I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt.
In the hospital a couple of days later I was induced and delivered our still born baby boy. He had died in utero due to the impact. I was numb, and more concerned with the scarred faces of our other boys, the four-year-old’s broken jaw and skull, my husband’s and my broken ribs, his dislocated hip, and my broken ankle. Losing the baby was just one of many reasons to grieve until we were allowed to go home two weeks later. Then new grief, physical discomfort, and our banged up children’s physical and emotional needs all hit me at once. It was a difficult time!
But a few month’s later I discovered that I was pregnant for the sixth time! “God is so good!” I exclaimed to those around me. This child was going to be special.
I miscarried seven weeks later.
To say I was disappointed is a massive understatement. I felt betrayed. I had figured out what God was up to and loved him for it. All through the difficult time we had continued to praise God and give him glory that the children we already knew had survived and would be okay. No brain damage, just scars. We were philosophical and maybe a little smug about our attitude. But this latest miscarriage turned everything upside down. I couldn’t stand it and I wouldn’t! God seemed just plain mean.
After my outburst and my husband’s departure, I felt the need to open my Bible. It fell open to John 15 and my eyes fell on verse 13: “Greater love has no one than this: that someone lay down his life for his friends.” What had I just said? “I’m glad you don’t show your love to me the way God does!”?
God has a way of using his Word efficiently - no beating around the bush, no sentimentality, just the truth: he had already proven his love to me centuries ago and didn’t need to do it again. Quietly I came to the realisation that if nothing I considered “good” ever happened to me again on this earth, I could never, ever doubt his love.
However, something very good did happen to me a couple of years later, and I could do nothing but praise him for our little unplanned daughter born after yet another miscarriage. She was the “icing on my cake” from the moment I met her and she still is twenty four years later.
Yes, God is good and he loves me, but not just because I had my private dream come true. The cross is my proof.
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