A friend who works in a hospital as a language interpreter tells a story that happened during the course of her work day.  It was her job to convey the message from the doctor that a mother’s child had died.

I basically would never be able to do that. I would have to resign. Ugly crying should not come from healthcare providers. It’s just not professional.

Somehow the words came out. The mother fell to the ground. In prayer.

My friend, through tears, had the unbelievable obligation/opportunity to translate the woman’s prayer to the doctors.  There, on the floor of a hospital in a foreign land the grief-struck woman began her prayer of thanks to God for the time He gave her with that precious child.

This is a real story of a regular woman in a typical hospital enduring an unthinkable tragedy. What would that have looked like for you?  For me? This is convicting for a million reasons. Several things stand out.

Her first reaction was prayer.  I have a great many first reactions in my back pocket. Humor. Sarcasm. Avoidance. Anger.  This woman compels me to empty my pockets of other responses and cling to prayer.

The prayer was of thanksgiving. Ah this part… This makes me cry so as to make the rest of this difficult to write.  This is radical faith.  This is faith that impacts onlookers.

She prayed out loud.  We are not called to perform impressive prayers in public. That’s not what matters.  The Lord is happy to hear our hearts and speak to us on isle 5 or while we fold our socks.  But wow.  To speak such personal words of thanksgiving out loud to a bunch of white coats you don’t even know, that is memorable.  There was no pausing to consider if people would find her odd.

If she was keeping the doctors from pressing matters.

If this display of faith would be offensive.

Nope.  Just prayer.  With abandon.

It is clear that this foreign woman in a random hospital was not unknown to the Lord.  I get the impression they were well acquainted.  Someone who instinctively reacts in this way does so because she has put in the precious hours rooting deep down.

I don’t even wonder how this sister in Christ is today. 2 Corinthians says ‘if we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, we also share abundantly in His comfort.’ I am so thankful for a God who comforts this fellow mother.

I’m praying today that our lives would have strong roots like this woman. I’m praying today for the dear friends who come to mind who have lost babies and the ones who want babies and have not yet had those prayers answered. He knows, sweet friend. He knows.

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8 thoughts on “thanks on the heels of unspeakable loss

    1. emily Post author

      Thanks for visiting, Shara! You’re right. Thankfulness does bring so much hope! And I love the thankful project idea! I hope to be able to write something for that. :)


  1. Sarah

    My mom knew of someone through her work that, in a similar situation, upon being told of her infant’s death, responded by proclaiming, “I trust you, Jesus!” I heard that as a kid almost 30 years ago and it, obviously, has had profound impact on me. Do I even proclaim “I trust you, Jesus!” when the big bills come in? When my schedule gets derailed? And to even respond with thanks — well, it’s what David did when his child died but… I love that you point out that she KNEW her God. Not just a little. Thanks for sharing this story…


    1. emily Post author

      What an amazing response!! It sure does leave an impression, doesn’t it? You’re right. We easily forget to trust Him even in the little things. I needed this encouragement today too.


  2. Perfection Pending

    None of us truly show gratitude like we should when things are going good. Much less during something like THAT! It’s humbling sometimes to know how far I still have to go to learn what God wants me to learn. And, I believe that having gratitude every day is one of THE things we are supposed to be learning in this life. So inspiring. Thanks for sharing. :)
    And, just had to share this: http://www.faithit.com/a-powerful-story-of-love-and-commitment-you-wont-forget.html
    This couple really inspired me today, and they have a gratitude board in their home. Amazing.


  3. Amy G

    whew…friends of our friends recently lost a baby and I’ve been constantly amazed at their response throughout the whole situation. I can only pray I would respond in such a way.


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