“they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one”
Hebrews 11:16a (NIV)
With Hebrews 11:16 coming to mind, I uttered the following words in the hospital room after the stillbirth of my first child: “She was made for a different land.” Soon, we announced online the death of our child instead of her birth, and the same words were written across the title of our blog post. As the years have gone by, this is the phrase I have written on balloons released in memory of my daughter. And most recently, “Made for a Different Land” is the title of a forthcoming collaborative book from Hope Mommies, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization sharing the hope of Christ with women who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth, and infant loss.* So, these have been significant, thematic words in my thought and life for the last five years and to the present day.
I think I have carried them so closely with me because of the hope they continue to communicate to my soul: First, “She was made”—she was! God made my daughter, and I thank Him that He did. Her existence was an act of God, full of meaning because divine hands formed her. She grew within me—she would not breathe outside of the womb or take steps on this earth. But she was made here—and I owe that joy and the treasure of calling her my daughter to the Lord, her Maker.
Second, “She was made for”—she was made to serve the purposes of an almighty God. The God who knew every one of her days, in utero, before even one came to be—she was made for Him. And her life, days, and existence—though not what I originally expected—came to be for a reason. They were to serve the plan God had set—purposes of His glory that I will see and enjoy in the fullness of eternity.
And third, her purpose involves being made “for a different land.” Specifically, good reason has caused her to not stay on earth for very long, but go quickly to glory. And because I have the hope God ordained her life to bypass much of what is here, I also have hope He set this limit for her earthly days because it will prove to serve Him best.
She was made; she is a treasure to me who also has indisputable intrinsic value because of her divine Maker. She was made for a sovereign King, for reasons worthy because of who He is. And her purpose involves her having gone quickly to a different land in order to best fulfill His calling on her life.
So, when I think or say these words—“Made for a Different Land”—I remember all over again that there is an intense, beautiful hope beyond the brevity of these earthly days that cannot be compressed into words. Though I do not know the full reasons for the brevity of her days, I am proud as her mother that she has fulfilled God’s great calling in her earthly life. Though she has been spared much of the pain and sorrow of this life—especially spared the worst sorrow of choosing to sin against her Maker—I also do not think her calling was entirely easy. She was called to so helplessly pass away in the womb without her own mother being able to rescue her. My dear girl! How I would have helped if I could have! And yet, even this has served the glorious purposes of an almighty God; this I know.
I am proud of her, thank God for her, and love her too dearly to express. I raise my arms in thanks to my great, beloved God that He has ordained for His people to have the honor of bringing glory to Him our their lives, and receive this heavenly purpose with a swell of hope for life beyond this place.
When I think of my daughter, made for a different land, these are the words of my heart for her:
My child, my treasure,
I love thinking of you, by God’s mercy, in that place where you are alive—full and free.
For you were not made for this land at all.
You were made for a different land, a better land, a heavenly one.
And here, I have gained greater love for the Lord and His life through the gift of knowing you.
Sharing our beloved Lord Jesus unites us, in time and in eternity.
*For the first time this year, Hope Mommies will have a free gift for those who want to donate to the ministry through their annual Giving Tuesday campaign—the new book Made for a Different Land: Eternal Hope for Baby Loss. More details on the campaign are to come at Hope Mommies. The book will also be available for purchase at Amazon on January 1.
This post was originally published at Hope Mommies.