Guys, I’m angry about something. But even more than that, I’m confused.

We’ve all (in the church anyway) read about Job, and about how, when he had a huge mess of sorrow heaped onto his head, his friends said things like that maybe it was punishment for sin.

I think the church in general knows not to equate suffering with judgement, necessarily. But I think another way of thinking has come up instead, and it’s only tonight that I’ve realized it, and realized how hurt I am by it.

My husband and I lost a baby very recently, and it really, really sucks. We’re both very sad. It was early, which is a blessing medically, but it’s still a loss. And we’re both feeling it.

I had a very well meaning, Jesus loving person tell me the story of how she had a miscarriage and how she wouldn’t have been able to love her children as well otherwise. I know she meant well by what she said, but it stung.

Equating suffering with some kind of training for the future is harder to sort through, because at first glance it makes sense. Everything God does is to make us more like Him, right? To prepare us?

But what creeps into my heart is a huge hurt. Would I have been that bad of a mother, that God had to use something this devastating on me? Why this?

Instead of having guilt from assuming this is punishment for some unrealized sin, I have guilt, overwhelmingly so, for something that has not happened, and that I cannot guess at. It’s a guilt that strikes not what I do, but to the core of who I am, and who I want to be. The feeling that I am so incapable of doing the one thing that women are made to best, and that I’ve been longing for my whole life (being a mother) that God had to drop something this huge onto me in order to work on me.

I think that is a lie.

I am honestly seeking God. I have seen the changes he is making in my life, and I am becoming open to correction and change. I have an accurate view of my own condition without Christ. But that’s the key: without Christ. I am not without Christ. I am a new creation-in-progress, growing every day. I am not unrepentant, and I didn’t need this huge amount of grief dropped onto me to ensure that I properly love my future children. I may be that much of a mess on my own, but I’m not on my own. That isn’t why.

This grief isn’t God’s correction for some way I’ve screwed up, and it isn’t God’s refining of some flaw in me either. That isn’t the way that He works, and no matter what my flaws, they’re covered by, and over time changed by, the blood of Christ, not by the loss of a baby.

God both atones and refines for us by the sacrifice of His perfect son, Jesus. Not by lavishing suffering and grief onto us.

I know there is a reason, and I know this will equip me for something in His master plan later on. And I don’t understand, and it hurts. But at least I know what it isn’t. It isn’t about something wrong with me.


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