I am taken aback just writing that sentence. This is all so entirely surreal.
Eleven days to hold him in their arms. Eleven days to memorize every one of his tiny features...so fearfully and wonderfully made. Eleven days to sing lullabies, read Bible stories and whisper his name. Eleven days of fervent prayers, petitioning the Father to heal their son.
For nine months, they prepared and anticipated, full of excitement and joy. The pregnancy was as normal as could be. There was no reason to expect that the birth wouldn't be, too. For nine months, they waited as their baby boy was knit together.
And then, in a matter of a few short moments, their world was shattered as things went very, very wrong.
The story is theirs to tell; the sorrow is ours to share.
I am heartbroken with and for them. I am angry. This isn't how it's supposed to work. This isn't what should have happened. They are enduring what no one should have to...certainly not them.
It is beyond comprehension, and although it is not for us to understand, the questions persist. The devastation continues.
This traumatic experience causes me to consider how I might handle the situation if it were me facing it. I can say with near certainty that I would not be responding as well as they seem to be. I am in awe of the faithfulness and trust in the Lord that these two are displaying. They are the epitome of grace, embodying what Christians are called to do in the face of trial. I am overwhelmed by the evidence of God's work in and through them throughout this experience.
"The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord."
The journey, though, is just beginning. The reality of the grief is only now setting in.
Bobby and I pray for the Lord's perfect peace and continued presence in their lives, and for His guidance and wisdom as we seek to discern how to be the kind of friends they need in the coming months and years.
I struggle to know how to end this post. For a situation where there are really no words, anyway.... It seems appropriate, though, to conclude with a verse that I know our friends have found comfort in as they navigate their grief.
May we all hold to this truth so confidently, faithfully clinging to His assurances.
"Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,
and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,
and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts
through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."