3 Things Christian Women Need to Know About Miscarriage
As the fog of grief slowly begins to lift after the loss of our unborn child, I’ve finally had a chance to think through the thoughts that have circulated in my mind for months. The more clearly I see, the more urgency I feel for women to truly understand what happens in the throes of miscarriage.
Prior to experiencing this loss, I had believed many lies regarding it. And as I speak with women around me I see evidence that I’m not the only one.
With 1 in 4 pregnancies ending in miscarriage, it’s imperative that Christian women become educated regarding this heartbreaking topic.
Women need to be equipped to help those suffering miscarriage. Sooner or later, there will be a woman in your life affected by the death of their baby in the womb, and as the Body of Christ, we must know how to bear their burden with them.
1. Women who suffer miscarriage are mourning a real loss.
Before the loss of our baby, I believed miscarriage was sad. What I didn’t know, was that women who have an early pregnancy loss are mourning more than a dream of motherhood or having more children. Sure, we were hopeful for those things, and for a time it feels as if our hope is crushed, but we are mourning the loss of a real life–an image bearer of God.
There are few words to explain how it feels to miss someone you’ve never met and to love so deeply a child you’ve never held. For mommas, the attachment to our children grows more with each day and change in our body. There is formed an automatic bond from the moment we see that first positive, positively reminding us life is blooming within our womb.
The life of a child, known and loved by God. Our child.
The child we lost.
This is why the common response, “You’ll have another baby.” is not helpful and at times hurtful. When a person has a stillborn child or loses an infant, you don’t hear these words offered up. So, why do we jump to this conclusion with women who have miscarried?
All life is precious, and another baby will be a blessing, but will not replace the one who was lost, nor will it take away the pain of that loss. Babies don’t heal our hearts–Jesus does.
Furthermore, while many women go on to have healthy pregnancies, many do not. Some women wrestle with more miscarriages, infertility or a mix of both. We don’t know what the Lord has planned for each woman and we lack the authority to declare they will have more children.
Because mommas who have miscarried are experiencing real loss, we should also refrain from comparing their pain to that of women who struggle with infertility. These two trials are very different. One is a loss, the other is never receiving. And both are extremely painful. Because of the striking differences, there is no use in comparing the two.
Statements like, “At least you could get pregnant. Think of so and so.” strike the hearts of women who’ve lost children in the womb and make them feel as if they should be glad for the death of their baby. It also hushes them from speaking up about the deep grief they are walking through.
2. Not all miscarriages are the same.
There are so many misconceptions about what happens in a woman’s body physically during miscarriage. This is because not all miscarriages are the same, and they all have a different set of hard circumstances which come along with them.
Many women experience what is called a “missed miscarriage.” This is when the baby has died but the woman’s body has not recognized it. Many times, the woman goes into her normal appointment, only to leave with her life changed. It is shocking as there was no sign. In this case, the woman has a few options. She can either wait a few more days to allow her body to recognize the loss, take medicine to cause her body to move the process along or have a D&C.
A D&C is typically the route women will take, and while they bypass the physical pain of a natural miscarriage, they are still left with the emotional stress of having their baby suctioned from their womb in the very same way many babies are aborted. As you can imagine, this would be a very hard thing to face and would bring up many emotions.
On the other hand, there are women who miscarry naturally or with the help of medicine. If the pregnancy is very early (3-5 weeks), the woman will most likely experience the symptoms of a heavy period.
But for those who miscarry in the weeks following, the physical pain increases tremendously. This is the case I can speak most clearly to, as this was my experience. Most people are clueless regarding the horrific physical symptoms for women who miscarry naturally, as was I.
If a woman miscarries between weeks 6-later, the pain is likened to labor. The contractions are almost unbearable, the scene is nauseating and the emotional pain is traumatizing. If I explained to you all I witnessed in the days I suffered the loss of our baby, you would be horrified. Many of us labor our tiny, lifeless babies and hold them in the palm of our hand.
This only scratches the surface of what happens to many women who experience death in their womb. I speak of these things because in order to help our dear friends who may go through this, we need to know what is happening to them. Only then can we begin to empathize with their pain and think of ways to practically bear their burden.
3. The physical and emotional turmoil knows no timeline.
Many believe the physical side of a miscarriage vanishes within a week. But this isn’t always the case. I labored our unborn baby for four days. Four days of intense pain. Some women have less physical pain, some have it worse, ending up in the ER due to blood loss.
During this time of great physical and emotional turmoil, your friend needs you. She needs your prayer, your encouragement and even your physical presence. I am so thankful for the women close to me who truly bore my burden with me. But I know many women go it alone.
Furthermore, there are many things which occur following this loss and they take their toll on a grieving mom. More Dr appointments, ultrasounds and blood tests. More phone calls, baby bellies, pregnancy announcements and that loathed first period. All of these, being reminders of what was lost. Some women go on to have a D&C on top of miscarrying naturally, due to residing tissue with infectious potential.
Even the baby clothes at Target, or a nursery picture on Pinterest can deepen the pain.
We must learn that the grief is real and often long lasting. Knowing this truth will give us cause not to make claims regarding when someone should be “over it.” They will have good days and really really hard days. Sometimes the pain will fall afresh after many weeks of somewhat normalcy.
Someone who has miscarried a child and knows a valuable little life existed in their womb, will never stop missing that baby; they will never be completely “over it.”
We would do well, as Christ following women, to remember this, and remember the loss many women near us are bearing.
Burden Bearing Women
Ya’ll, God has called us to bear all burdens of the ladies near us–even the ones we don’t quite understand, and even the ones we feel most uncomfortable with.
Jesus entered our pain and we can all agree it wasn’t comfortable for him in the least. Even so, he stepped in and took our burden upon himself. (1 Peter 2:24).
Here we have a chance to follow in his footsteps by picking up the burden women who miscarry are carrying.
Let’s be Christ following women; let’s be burden bearing women.
Feminism Doesn’t Love You Back
It seems feminism is the new religion of America. Many young Christian women can be found saying, “I love feminism!”
I have to wonder though, does feminism love them back?
Modern day feminism is no longer just about gaining women’s rights. Today’s feminist can be seen applauding other women who kill their baby within the womb and circumventing God’s plan for marriage and sex.
The many voices of feminism scream, “Equality!”…unless you believe differently than them. Sure, they encourage you to follow your dreams…unless you aspire to be a stay at home wife or mom. Then you’re just a “waste of potential.” They yell, “Women’s rights!”…unless, of course, you’re a baby girl in the womb.
Feminism claims to love and support women, but when you dig a bit deeper, you find that to be far from the truth.
Feminism Lies to Women
Recently, with my friend’s wedding on the way, I traveled store to store in search of a dress.
As I ventured toward the dressing room, past the pretty pieces in the front of one store, I was met with bizarre clothing in the back. I glanced at skimpy clothes and crop tops that said, “Girls do it better” and “Feminism”
This section, geared toward teen girls like the ones I lead in the youth group, strategically feed lies straight from the lips of feminism.
LIE: If you’re not one of us, you’re a disgrace to women.
LIE: Revealing your body is power.
LIE: Men are beneath you.
These lies, among others, are reiterated in magazines, TV series, and perfume ads. They’re easily pointed out in songs and high school cafeteria conversations.
And they’re seeping into the minds of so many women.
Feminism Demeans Women
Once I made it to the dressing room, I was met by a male employee. (In a women’s store, mind you.) Awkwardly, I asked if I could try something on and he assured me all of the rooms were open.
Cool. Thanks…but can you leave?
Society, driven by the modern day feminist agenda, has told men that simply because of their sexual orientation or decision to act like a woman, they now have the right to be where women like you and I take our clothes off, despite their biological makeup.
You see, feminism tells you that you have such little uniqueness and worth as a woman, that any man off the street can put on a dress, paint his face and be declared female.
And feminists celebrate it. Yet, all it proves is how illogical their view is. “Women run the world! But don’t worry, you can easily buy a bra and become one of us!” Is it really so simple to transform into a woman?
No. I refuse to believe the lies.
God created men and women to be equal but with separate roles. (Genesis 1:27; Genesis 2:18-25; Ephesians 5:22-33). He made us with different bodies and clear genders. He set up protection for women and gave us gifts which differ from men. And everything he did, he did because he knows what’s best for his creation and his glory.
But many women would like to reject this fundamental truth. If men are busy playing dress up, women can step into the roles that need to be filled. They can take the lead like their heart is so bent to do, ever since the tragic day when Eve took the fruit.
Unfortunately, embracing anything other than God’s truth and grasping at the roles of men only leads to destruction.
Feminism doesn’t love you. Feminism demeans you.
Feminism Yields No True Hope
Answer me this: where is feminism when the emotions and shame of abortion hit? Where is she when your baby is stillborn? Or when you lose a child through miscarriage?
Feminism tells you to suck it up. After all, it’s just a clump of cells. It wasn’t a life and therefore means nothing, right? Why would you hurt so badly? Why would grief overtake you? You have no right to mourn–no reason to weep.
And yet, you feel the ache. Because you know feminism is lying to you. Your body knows that life was stripped away from your womb, and so do you.
Where is feminism when your marriage is in shambles or when friends forsake you?
Most importantly, where will she be on the day when you stand accountable before the God who made you, and realize you have no relationship with him, and no advocate before the throne.
Feminism lacks truth, and therefore lacks the ability to give any sort of real hope in the painful circumstances of life.
Feminism causes women to suppress real, raw pain and put on a smile as if everything is okay. She leaves you destitute and alone.
Feminism is a Cruel Master
Women daily sacrifice their marriages, relationship with God and even their children on the altar of feminism.
Tell me, when was the last time feminism sacrificed anything for you? Has she ever sent her only son to die the horrific death you deserved and free you from the bondage of sin?
No. Only God has done that. And though we’ve all spurned his name and rejected his will, he stands ready to save those who will turn to him.
Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his wounds we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned—every one—to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:4-6 ESV)
Satan whispers to us, as he did to Eve, saying, “You can be God.” And rapidly, as each woman gives in to his temptation, we see how he uses us to flip upside down the order God set up. There’s a reason he went to the woman, friends.
But we don’t have to listen. We can choose to trust our Creator, our loving Father, instead. We can live in free obedience to him, knowing that his boundaries and roles are not set in place in order to withhold good from us, but to protect us from lives of brokenness, apart from his loving care.
Feminism is a cruel master. She’s out to wreck the lives of women and destroy their souls.
Jesus died to save women (and men) and free their souls. He has given all of himself, even his very life for those who will turn to him for salvation.
Jesus is better than feminism.
Feminism doesn’t love you back.
Your Testimony is Invaluable
“My testimony is boring. I was saved really young.”
“I don’t have a very exciting testimony. I wasn’t a drug addict or anything.”
I’ve heard statements like these, often. Christians who were graciously placed in a home with godly parents who raised them in God’s Word, typically feel as if their salvation story holds little weight. They aren’t sure their testimony should even be spoken when placed next to a dramatic story of how God turned someone else’s life around. At times, they may long to trade in their story for a more exciting one.
Truthfully, theirs may lack drama, but it is a beautiful display of so many other things.
The Weight of a Dramatic Testimony
I truly love sharing the story of how God saved me. I was fully engrossed in sin, but he snatched me out of my pit and put a song of praise in my mouth. (Psalm 40:2-3). He has completely changed me. I don’t even recognize that girl I used to be anymore. I will forever be thankful for that.
It’s amazing to see this kind of outward transformation in people. It’s extremely glorifying to the Lord. But what you don’t see, is the inward heartache and shame those carrying dramatic testimonies face on a weekly–sometimes even daily–basis.
The memories, the thoughts, the temptations and the consequences of sin linger. There is a cost that many who were saved at a young age don’t have to pay: the scars of sin and shame built up over years and years of rebellion against God.
The Shelter of Your Father
While a person who was saved young is no less sinful than one who was saved in adulthood, the fact remains that the person saved later in life has acted out on their sin more, leaving them with deep wounds.
We all have scars from sin, even those who have been following the Lord from a young age. But praise God for his protection of you, that he made known to you his Gospel and lifted the veil so early in your life!
What a beautiful testimony that the world needs to hear! He sheltered you under his wing as a Father and holds you in his arms as you persevere in the faith, year after year. What a glorious story!
All Testimonies are Invaluable
Both those saved at an early age and those saved later in life, come together to display the glory of God’s protection, faithfulness and goodness to his people. We need the warnings of the gal who chased after darkness saying, “I’ve been there. Don’t go down that road!”, and the warnings of the girl saved at 8 saying, “God has protected me from that. He will protect you too, if you turn to him.”
All salvation stories point to Jesus. All of them bring glory to his name and all of them must be shared.
I have told the glad news of deliverance
in the great congregation;
behold, I have not restrained my lips,
as you know, O Lord.
I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart;
I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
from the great congregation. (Psalm 40:9-10 ESV)
Each life saved by a gracious God is worth shouting from the rooftops for all to hear. Your testimony, no matter how “simple” you may think it to be, is invaluable to the Kingdom. He will use it to lift the veil from the eyes of others that they may turn to him and behold his glory. (2 Corinthians 3:16).
So don’t covet a more “exciting” testimony. Instead, recognize that every salvation is a holy work wrought about by a God who brings dead sinners to life. (Ephesians 2:1-5). And friends, that is truly amazing.
Since we have such a hope, we are very bold, not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not gaze at the outcome of what was being brought to an end. But their minds were hardened. For to this day, when they read the old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their hearts. But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:12-18 ESV)
Hey guys! Do you love pretty mugs and bible study tools? Me too! Thats why I love Kristin Schmucker's shop. Click on the picture to check it out!