After three heartbreaking miscarriages, my wife and I discovered that she was pregnant. With each passing week, our confidence and excitement grew for our growing family. At our first ultrasound with the OB, we noticed concern from our doctor and were told that our baby was not developing correctly. Our hearts broke. With the following visits, we learned that our son had severe spina bifida, a sizable hole in his heart, clubbed feet, a short umbilical cord, markers for down syndrome, a misshapen brain and skull, and had not developed kidneys—which would prove to be fatal. A critic, at that point, may have thought of my situation, “What good did Jesus do for you?” Yet—as we were in the very midst of this trial—our years of following Jesus and reading his word led us to avoid asking “why” and instead to humbly declare with Job, “the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21).
Our son only lived for thirty-minutes. While we certainly mourned for our loss, we turned to the Lord Jesus Christ. Over the coming months and years, we began to truly internalize the truth, “O grave, where is thy victory?” (1 Cor. 15:55). Do I believe that living the teachings of Jesus will spare me from all heartache—most certainly not. Yet, I also know that a palpable peace and assurance can be the companion of anyone who seeks to abide in him. The pain from such a trial in a world without Jesus would be an eternal tragedy. I know, from personal experience, of no other more rewarding, wholesome, and comforting way to live than to include Jesus in our lives, the ups and the downs.