Choosing to SEE

Many of you are familiar with the Chapman family's story (the Chapmans being Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman). I remember hearing about the accident that took little Maria's life. It was the May before I became pregnant with Ayden. I remember it shaking me and my heart aching for them....wondering what I would do if that ever happened to me. I never imagined that 16 months later, I would live that same heartache.

Mary Beth has written a book (much like I would like to someday...) about their experience and what God has taught/is teaching them. She reminds me so much of myself - the honesty and transparency. Her words sounded so familiar - like these:

When people ask how we are doing, the first thing I always say is, "I want Maria back. I want my son Will Franklin not to have this as a chapter in his story. I want my children to be healthy, my family secure. I don't really care whose life has been touched or changed because of our loss!"
That is the heart of a mother who lost a daughter and is determined not to lose another child. I believe God can handle my heart, my questions, and my anger. It's okay to want Maria back. It's okay to be angry. The question is, what do I do with it it all? What do I do with God?
That resonated so strongly with me. When we first lost Ayden, I hated the question, "What do you need?" I knew what people meant, but I wanted to scream, "I NEED all of you to stop asking me what I need! You know what I need! I need my baby back!!" I took me a long time to become angry. I spent a lot of time in the numb stage of grief....just disbelief....waiting to wake up from the nightmare, yet every morning was the same....he was gone. Once I finally became angry, I was livid. I questioned Him; I blamed Him; I doubted Him.
But He never left me.
"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers they will not sweep over you...Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west." - Isaiah 43: 2, 5
This verse was written along with the Prologue, which was written by a friend of Mary Beth's. I had read that verse before, but reading it again shook me. After I read it, I wrote this:
- When I read this, tears began to flow. YOU have walked with me through waters, and you didn't let the rivers of grief and loss sweep over me. YOU were always there to steady me. And YOU will bring Ayden to me again when you gather us together. -
One of my resolutions for the new year was to get deeper in my relationship with Christ. Life gets busy, and my time with God often gets pushed aside....which is so backwards. I decided that I was going to keep a prayer journal of sorts. It's not just for prayers, though; when I'm reading the Word or reading a book and something catches my attention, I'm going to write it down and write my thoughts in that moment. This method helps me because if I just read...I forget, but if I read and then record my thoughts and my "ah-ha moments", it will stick.
I chose this book to be my first for my journal, and I'm so glad I did.
If you're like me, and you've lost a child, it's difficult to find Christian literature that speaks to you and this new life. The norm doesn't apply anymore. I seek out literature written by those /for those who have experience loss because it helps me process and it helps me feel less alone. If you're looking for a book to read but can't quite seem to find one that "fits" - give this one a try. I promise, you won't be disappointed. I'm only on chapter 3, and I have already gained so much.
I am going to the Women of Faith Conference this year, and Mary Beth will be there. I'm looking forward to hearing her speak and being there amongst so many sisters in Christ.
Choose to SEE everything.



  1. I'm reading this book as well. Her little note to Maria (in memory) was so sweet.

  2. A GREAT book, I agree. Another one (more of a daily devotional) I'd recommend is "The One Year Book of Hope" by Nancy Guthrie.

  3. I read this book a few weeks ago in just 2 days. I couldn't put it down. It spoke to me in a lot of ways...not just because I've lost a child, but also because I feel God may be calling us to adopt someday. And the fact that my hubby is a worship leader/songwriter and we LOVE Steven Curtis Chapman's music! I got chills as I read of all the different things that God did in their lives after Maria died that you simply cannot explain away with "conincidence".

  4. I read this book a couple of months ago and really liked it. It would be neat to discuss with you after you finish...
    hope all is well. I prayed for you this morning!

  5. Beautiful post..I haven't read that book yet, but it is on my list of books to read! I feel the same way about Angie Smith's "I Will Carry You." Her book spoke to me in volumes, and I believe she wrote the book that I would write if I wanted to write a book. I am not that gifted in the writing department! I will have to get the book from my mom so I can read it!

  6. Lindsay- I've followed your blog for a while now. I can't even imagine what you've been through, but your blog is an encouragement to me. Your faith amazes me. I have not lost a child in the way you've lost Ayden, but I had an ectopic pregnancy at 11 weeks and it just about destroyed me...but ultimately brought me to Christ. I would like to recommend the book "I will Carry You" by Angie Smith. If you haven't heard of it, look it up. It's a great book dealing with pregnancy/infant loss. Thanks for sharing your blog. You and Ayden really do make a difference in many lives.


  7. I really want to read her book! I'm sure it is so good.

    Just finished it!!!!!!!!!