God is for me and He is for you too, even when circumstances seem bleak.  When God gave His only Son (John 3:16), He offered the gift of heavenly hope that is written on our hearts from eternity past, penned in Jesus’ blood.  I’ve come to see purpose in the pain of my loss experiences and can relate to the apostle Paul in his letter to the Philippians when he says, “Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel” (Philippians 1:12).

Memorialize Your Child…

Loving actions toward a deceased child help replace painful memories with loving thoughts:

  • Place a memorial stone in a garden or cemetery, or create a special place for a memorial garden at your own home.  Consider planting a tree in your child’s memory.
  • Display framed calligraphy of Scripture in the child’s honor such as ‘Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these’ Mark 10:14.
  • Plan a balloon release including a prayer with a friend to help you celebrate your hope.
  • Purchase a gift in your child’s honor to display with other family memorabilia—a small silver baby cup engraved, a small quilt or crib blanket to use as a wall hanging.
  • Make a memorial gift in your offering at church or place altar flowers in memory of your child.
  • Choose a special Christmas ornament or keepsake box to honor your child’s memory.
  • On what would have been your child’s birthday or due date, purchase gifts that would have represented his/her age and donate them to a local shelter for children in need.
  • Write a song, poem or journal entry to your child.
  • Purchase or make a pretty bookmark for your Bible to remind you of your little one with thoughts of love and joy.
  • Sponsor a plaque or monument at the National Memorial for the Unborn in Chattanooga, Tennessee, dedicated to the memory of unborn children, particularly those lost in abortion (www.memorialfortheunborn.org). Online memorials allow you to share a tribute and read what others have written to their loved ones who have died.
  • Make a monetary donation to a child-oriented charity or organization in memory of your child.

These caring gestures need not be explained to everyone; exercise discernment as you bring others into this circle of love and as God’s Spirit leads.

More than anything, seek hope and healing in the promises of God’s Word. The Lord tells us, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13). Approach God in prayer and embrace the hope of living fully in Christ, despite your painful past. Hebrews 10:23 calls us to “…hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” This unswerving hope in the Lord Jesus Christ brings assurance of our faith and His faithfulness, bringing hope and healing to our grieving hearts.

Teske Drake is a mommy to three babies in heaven, mother to two on earth, and wife to her one and only, Justin. Inspired by her own loss experiences, Teske serves as co-founder and President of Mommies with Hope, a biblically-based support group ministry for women who have experienced the loss of a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss. Teske is the author of Hope for Today, Promises for Tomorrow: Finding Light Beyond the Shadow of Miscarriage or Infant Loss (Kregel, 2012) and she leads women to live in hope at www.mommieswithhope.com.

Kim Ketola is a broadcaster, writer and speaker. Her faith and life experience inform her understanding of one of the biggest untold stories of our time--the spiritual impact of abortion on the women and men who choose it. Her award-winning book Cradle My Heart, Finding God's Love After Abortion (Kregel, 2012) features a Foreword by Ruth Graham. Kim also hosts the weekly national program Cradle My Heart Radio with live and interactive stories of healing and hope after abortion (www.cradlemyheart.org).

Publication date: January 25, 2013