How To Move Forward In The Face Of Deepest Loss

by Kristen Gilles

in Coping With Miscarriage/Stillbirth/Death

Recently I’ve corresponded with new acquaintances who have buried their stillborn children and who are seeking comfort and counsel from the Lord.  He has used these opportunities to remind me of His faithfulness in answering my and Bobby’s many prayers for help as we mourned the stillbirth of our own son, Parker.  The following words will highlight what I’ve shared with these ladies — what God has taught us and how He explicitly helped us (and continues to help us) in our grieving and hopeful waiting.  This will be a 3-part series.


Although it’s helpful to talk with someone who has experienced loss similar to our own, it’s most important for us to trust in the Lord at all times and pour out our hearts to Him who is a refuge for us (Psalm 62). God has given us himself, the Man of Sorrows, well-acquainted with our griefs.  We will never find anyone on earth who knows the depths of our sorrows or the heights of our joys as does our Heavenly Father, our Savior the Suffering Servant, and our Comforter the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit will always and only guide you in what is right, as he brings truth to your heart from God’s holy word.  He will instruct you in the way you should go, even in your grieving.  He will guard your heart and mind and keep you in perfect peace as you keep your eyes fixed on Christ.  He will answer your prayers to not be ruled by the grief, or memories of/longings for the child you lost, or time spent now with children still living here, or your desire for more children. He will help you.

I remember asking the Lord many times to keep me from being ruled by the sadness of losing Parker, from the memories I had of carrying him, from the unmet expectations I had of being able to care for him and know him here (and the surrealism of moving forward in life without him here).

God protected me from being consumed by the misguided opinions and well-intentioned but empty condolences of others, and from the desperate emptiness I felt after giving birth to a dead child, and from the lies and taunts of the enemy who relentlessly pursued me to destroy my faith and turn my heart away from trusting the Lord.

God intended for our grief and anguish in labor to be turned to joy (as Jesus told his disciples in giving them a picture of what would happen to their sadness and grief after He ascended into heaven and later returned to make everything new (John 16:20-24)). And when, because of sin’s curse, that doesn’t happen for us, when our grief and anguish in labor gives birth to more grief and anguish, we become very vulnerable to being ruled by the grief.

Yet, the Lord invites us to dwell in the shelter of the Most High and there abide in the shadow of the Almighty who pulls us close to Himself and covers us with His feathers (Psalm 91).  He reminds us that He guards all that is ours (Psalm 16:5) – He guards our lives!  He gives us promise after promise in His Word, invitation after invitation for us to trust Him and test His faithfulness, to taste and see that He is good, that He doesn’t withhold any good thing from those who walk uprightly before Him.

He makes it clear to us in His Word that He is trustworthy, and the source of all our joy, and the keeper of all our tears who tracks all of our sorrows, and the God of All Comfort who daily bears our burdens, and the One who keeps in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast hoping in the Lord (Isaiah 26).

Keep pouring your heart out to Him.  As the shock of your child’s death dissipates and sadness sets in, keep pouring your heart out to the Lord.  He will not hand you over to your enemies.  He won’t let you be crippled by the anguish and sadness.  He will let you feel it deeply.  He will let you suffer with Christ.  But He will preserve your soul and keep you from all harm (Psalm 121).  He will not let this loss destroy you.  He is your Keeper and will never let you go.

Previous post:

Next post: