I went to a Hope Mommies retreat this past weekend. Hope Mommies is an organization ministering to the hearts of mother’s that have seen their babies go to heaven ahead of them. I met 30 other women who are grieving the loss of one or more babies, either through miscarriage or through infant loss. I heard so many heartbreaking stories. Stories that would simply undo you. Stories no one should have to live through. But stories that Are Being Lived… bravely, courageously, and in community together.
The theme of this year’s retreat was Marked, knowing that each one of us has been forever marked by this tragedy in our lives. Marked by death, marked by grief, marked by anger, by empty arms, by the loss of a dream. Marked… together with Christ, sharing in His suffering, bringing His suffering to completion knowing one day we will be with Him again in glory.
I walked away from this retreat remembering again the answer to a question that I’ve been wrestling with for years. The question being “Who am I?” In light of losing these babies, in light of years of battling with fertility issues and losing what once was a place in which I found my identity, in light of it all, who will I be now? I have been marked. So what will my mark say about me?
I have a choice. My mark can leave me bitter, angry, jealous and just downright hateful. No one would blame me for it. They would even understand it. But choosing that is just not who I am… and nothing close to what I was designed for. I know this. God knows this. And you know this.
I was designed for worship. And I was designed by and for the Love above all loves. I simply am not meant to dwell here forever. I’m made for a different place: an upside down, inside out Kingdom, where what is now unseen will be seen and all the heartache of today will be no more. A place where my babies are now. And now, right now, they know this Love face-to-face. How I long to be with You, too.
But for today, I do live here. It hurts; and I will make my choice. Jesus is true and sure and my heart cries out for Him to come. In light of this, I choose to be a woman of Hope. For, “hope does not put us to shame.” I am and hope to always be a Hope Mommy.