When Darkness Seems to Hide God’s Face

Prior to marriage the thought of conceiving a child seemed quite easy. Everywhere I looked a woman was pregnant; surely it wasn’t that difficult. My husband and I decided to try for children fairly early into our marriage. What looked easy before quickly became difficult for us. I struggled with a hope deferred combined with physical suffering and a fight to trust God under difficult circumstances.

My first trial was getting pregnant. I waited a year before becoming pregnant with my first child. I knew then I wasn’t infertile. But I didn’t know I would struggle with chronic miscarriages.

I knew there was something wrong during my first pregnancy when I began getting winded and dizzy going up a set of stairs. Most miscarriages seem to have little to no symptoms, but my first was full of evidence. I called my nurse, and within a few days my personal diagnosis was confirmed.

The sadness that comes along with miscarriages is indescribable. As a woman who understands that humanity begins at conception; the reality of a life—a son or a daughter—dying so young was very saddening. Yet I was full of faith after my first miscarriage. I was comforted knowing God’s love for me and Jesus’ relating to me (Hebrews 4:15).

I quickly became pregnant again and just as quickly miscarried for the second time. This time, I wasn’t so full of faith. I was heartbroken. Would I ever be able to have children? I wonderer. My body and soul were tired.

My second miscarriage was the most difficult one. We had a name picked out. My doctor told us the sex of the baby. The baby girl had a heartbeat, she was only eight weeks old (gestation age). She was my little girl–gone. It seemed so odd. It also seemed like everyone around me was pregnant. So as I experienced yet another miscarriage friends and friends of friends were having babies.

Hope Not Deferred

For once I got it. I understood what it felt like to have a sick heart with a hope deferred (Prov 13:12). I longed for a child. This desire wasn’t sinful. Children are a gift. But God was calling me to wait and endure various trials. He was teaching me patience, and I was learning how to trust him. God would eventually give me a beautiful son, followed by two more miscarriages, and then a daughter. Yet during the years of waiting and losing children, God was reminding me of my true hope.

There is a hope that is not deferred. There’s the hope of a man who came to seek and save the lost. He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with much grief. He was despised and crushed. He was pierced for our transgressions and iniquities (Isaiah 53). We have a great hope in Jesus Christ, the one who died, was raised, and is now at the right hand of God interceding for us all (Rom 8:35).

And one day we will see our Hope face to face. I have the hope of an eternal everlasting home where neither moth nor rust destroy and where no more shall there be an infant who lives but a few days (Matt. 6:20; Isaiah 65:20).

God doesn’t promise a life of ease. So in my next trial I want to cling to Jesus. I cannot cling to the doctor’s diagnosis. I cannot cling to the assistance of medicine. I definitely cannot cling to my own understanding (Prov  3:5). He is my only hope. He is where my hope is built.

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name.

On Christ the solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

When darkness seems to hide His face,
I rest on His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.

His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my Hope and Stay.

When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh may I then in Him be found.
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne.

“My Hope Is Built” by Edward Mote, circa 1834; first appeared in Mote’s Hymns of Praise, 1836

  • tricia

    Hope Deferred,beautifully explained and written,thank you Trillia.

  • http://www.thinkpoint.wordpress.com Steve Cornell

    Thank you for sharing so transparently. I will pass this along to others I know who have gone through similar struggles. Our daughter was so excited to be expecting our first grandchild but was called to face the difficulty of miscarriage.We now have a beautiful granddaughter but recall clearly how painful it was for our daughter and her husband and for us. I did a sermon series on Joseph which I titled, “When the sun stays hidden for years.” Your title made me think of this series. Many blessings to you!

  • http://www.kendradahl.com Kendra

    After miscarrying I, too, found comfort in the words of that hymn. As God carried me through it, He reminded me over and over that my hope must not be found in a child but in His unchanging grace. Thanks for sharing honestly – while painful to recall it’s also sweet to see how the Lord works, and it reminds me that the lesson He taught me in that season is just as applicable now as a parent.

  • http://tmcgilvreay.blogspot.com Tim

    Thanks for sharing this story. I can identify in some ways, even though my situations are obviously very different (being a man, at the very least). I struggle with understanding why the Bible even contains words and promises of God being an “ever-present help in the day of trouble” and things like that when, in my experience, it has just been lingering suffering. People tell me, “Well God is waiting for you to do something different.” Ok, well great. But it seems like there is only pain to get out of it, worse pain with no relief in sight (after all… there has been no real change or relief for years, so why expect it now?) It is very difficult, with lingering suffering with no relief, to believe that God is there or that He cares. The whole “well you just gotta have faith,” sounds so trite. I shudder when I write these words, but I can’t help it. If He is there, I long for the day when I can find that my crying out has not been in vain.

    • http://www.wogmagazine.com T.Newbell

      Hi Tim,

      I just wanted to let you know I am praying for you. I pray that the joy of the Lord would be your strength and that you would “be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” In the Lord, your labor (and suffering) isn’t in vain. 1Cor 15:58.

  • Kishia


    thank you so much for sharing and for your transparency. The Lord hasn’t called me to walk through this (my husband & I haven’t tried to conceive) but I do have friends who’ve had to walk this road. I am encouraged as you share very openly about the struggles of your faith during such long seasons of suffering. A greater degree of transparency about the struggles to live out our faith, and work out our faith with fear and trembling, is always a breath of fresh air to read. But even more so, this encourages me to continue to persevere, seek & search for the Lord’s face, hands, and mercies during the storms and trials of life. And to trust His hand & Sovereignty in all that He calls us to go through. He is still GOOD. Excited for the beautiful little ones that you have. Even their very lives seems to be a testament already. Take care! :-)

  • Jason

    Thanks for sharing. My wife and I have gone through two miscarriages, and they are very hard. It’s good to be reminded that there is hope in this world, and his name is Jesus.

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  • http://joshandloraena.blogspot.com L Tuttle

    Thank you, TGC (and Trilla) for addressing this form of grief. As someone who has experienced years of infertility and multiple failed adoptions (with multiple friends who have suffered miscarriages and/or infertility also), I see a huge need for gospel centered teaching on this topic. I can also testify to the truth that Jesus is hope that is not deferred, and one day he will make right everything that is wrong. But for the here and now, despite our pain, longings, and unbelief, he is more than enough. My husband and I would never have chosen the path of infertility or the difficulty of our adoption losses, but we wouldn’t trade the nearness of God that we have received through them for anything.

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