How Can I Have Faith After Losing My Son?

Written by Christie Hoos

faith_havefaithI have never been a big fan of the “paste a smile on and pretend it’s okay” club.

In my case it was months after my son, Noah’s, death that I began to feel angry. I had to return to work and the crushing unfairness of it all began to sink in. I used to think that people of true faith accepted everything quietly and calmly, but now I’m not so sure.

I wrestled with God for several months.

My husband was afraid that he would never get his wife back. If anyone saw me walking in the woods behind our house they must have thought I was crazy — I was muttering, crying, even shouting at God. I read books in the bible that dealt with people who were suffering — Job, Psalms, Ecclesiastes and Lamentations — and was reassured that some of God’s favorite people were angry and confused by Him. The best advice I got was that giving God the silent treatment would only punish me. God can take it, so tell Him what you are feeling.

How can I have faith you ask? I’ll try to answer you as best I can. My husband is a scholar and he finds reassurance in philisophical arguements about truth, the state of the world and nature of God. I’ll admit that these truths are convincing and I would be happy to share some with you if you like, but in crisis my faith was not bolstered by academic points so I won’t get into them now.

First I must explain my faith to you, so that you know what I am choosing to rely on.

I do believe with my whole heart that God is good and the world is not. The bible is clear that because of our choices to reject God we live in a fallen world full of sickness, natural disasters, pain and death. This is not God’s purpose for humanity – he wants us to live with Him where there is no pain, no sadness, no death. In order to make this happen He made the greatest sacrifice, He sent His own son to die, to pay the price for our wrong choices (it is hard to imagine that He loves us so much that he would allow his son to die – on purpose). When Jesus rose from the dead three days later He destroyed forever the power of death over the human soul. Still, we must choose to accept or reject this gift. That is the faith I have.

I trust in Jesus to pay for my wrongs and to save me from death.

Especially since Noah’s death, this hope is my foundation. I know that one day I will see not only Jesus but my son again. I would rather he was with me, but since he is not I am so glad that he is safe and loved. For this reason I hold onto my faith. I even wrote a website all about this – Noah’s Place.

Not only that, but my faith in Jesus is about relationship. Like I said, I have been angry with Him. I will never be happy that my son is away from me (even temporarily). I miss him terribly. There is a hole in our family and in my heart that aches. But God does know how we feel. He lost His son too. And He has made it so clear to me that He loves me more than I can comprehend. This comfort did not come quickly or easily. Slowly, in so many ways – through reading the bible, praying (even angry and despairing prayers), through nature, through others around me — God put His arms around me and helped my broken heart to heal. He was there all along I just had to open up to Him.

To live without faith seems to me a hopeless, comfortless and pointless existence.

So I hold on, even when I don’t feel like it. This is how I have faith, not a feeling or an experience, but a decision. As Job said “though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him.” I can’t imagine life without Jesus. Holding onto faith has been a struggle, but to live without it, is unthinkable.

You have a choice to make also. Faith is not something you lose, it’s something you choose or reject. I’m sorry to say that anyone who has lost a child has a very long and hard journey ahead of them. Grief is exhausting, messy, and misunderstood. Anger and confusion are normal and healthy (only if you get stuck there for an extended amount of time will you need to worry and seek medical help). If you have lost a child, be patient with yourself, you are in mourning. Do not rely on your feelings to decide what you believe. Look ahead – what kind of life do you want? Who do you want to be?

I would not trade my Noah for a child that lived.

I would not have chosen this path, it has been hard and painful, but it has changed me for the better. I am forever grateful to my son for that.

In Love,
Christie
Noah’s Mom

If you have lost a child, know that you are not alone. I can’t tell you why you’re child is gone, but I can tell you that there is a God who loves you and who loves your child. He knows what it means to lose a son.

Are you struggling with a sadness that never seems to end? We are here to talk

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582 Responses to “How Can I Have Faith After Losing My Son?”

  • Cheryl and others interested in a community for Christians that have lost a child. Please contact me at sheldon.kotyk@p2c.com I’m interested in setting something up for you.

  • Aldo says:

    Grieving Mother, you are right in not believing in religion. But, I am not sure that you have faith right when you say that faith is based on believing in the unknown. Saving faith is believing that we are all sinners in need of a Savior. That Savior is the “only begotten” Son of God, Jesus Christ, Who God the Father sent into the world as a human being to suffer and die on the cross of Calvary for my sins, your sins, and the sins of the entire human race. If we accept that and receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we enter into a “relationship” with God (not religion). No one comes into a “relationship” with God without accepting the ultimate sacrifice God the Father has made available through His Son’s death. The Bible says in the gospel of John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

    As far as the light which you mentioned, Jesus Himself has said in John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

    Grieving Mother, you may have had an “illuminating experience” 16 years ago, but are you sure that you have entered into a “born again” relationship with God? I ask that because it seems that you are befuddled about how that happens. You mentioned in your last sentence that your son is in this light being restored till he is reborn. I do not doubt that he may be reborn, but the Bible says that being “born again” can only take place before death. Hebrews 9:27, “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.”

    Grieving Mother, if you have never said a prayer like the following one, you can do so now. Remember, God knows your heart and is not as concerned with your words as He is with your intent.

    “Dear God, I admit I am a sinner and need Your forgiveness; I believe that Jesus Christ, Your Son, died in my place, paying the penalty for my sins. I am willing right now to turn from my sin and accept Him as my personal Savior and Lord. I commit myself to You, and ask You to send the Holy Spirit into my life, to fill me and take control, and to help me become the kind of person You want me to be. Thank You Father for loving me, forgiving my sins, and for giving me everlasting life, in Jesus name, Amen.”

    I pray that you do so, and that the peace of God comes to you, in Christ’s Name. Amen.

  • Olga says:

    Dear friends I too have my son missing and the investigation is still going on. I’m not even sure if the body we buried belongs to my son and every single day I hope he will return. He had taken the house keys and gone. Whoever has played the wicked plot has forgotten to put his keys or mysterious. I know the sharp pangs each one of you are going through and every single day I pray for each one of you and every single mother. I am working for the slum children and trusted God to take care of my son. Now where is my son? I can’t believe it.

  • Grieving Mother says:

    I am a mother who recently lost my first born son. My son was killed on August 25, 2016 at 3:12 am. The only advice I can give is this. I not only believe in a Higher Power but I have known for the past 16 years we do have a spirit. I do believe our Creator and Jesus does love all human beings. I do not believe in religion anymore.
    Having faith is based on believing in the unknown. Something you can’t see but there are people like me who are fortunate enough to have a near death experience.
    I grieve my son everyday, I pray for his spirit and ask the Highest Power to keep my son close to his/her ultimate love. See the reality for me is my son is finally free and My one HOPE is he is in the light to bring me home.
    No my pain is real here on earth, I cry over his death but the reality is my son knew he was going to die. He told me 3 months before his death and told my niece the last 4 days of his life. Mu son was hit by a car 8.5 hours after he left my sisters home.
    The pain I feel has lessoned but it never goes away. As a mother my heart is shattered and my soul has been ripped out of me.
    I hold on to the light, the golden lights that restored me 16 years ago but most of all I hold onto the Ultimate light that forgave,loved and freed me from all the pain and hurt of my past. My son is in this light being restored till he is reborn.

  • Sharon says:

    to Truth thank you yes non Christians and Christians are welcome onto this site we will pray for people on this site along as people know this is a Christian site that we will pray for people on this site. and also people don’t judge other people by making fun of them. I pray Gods healing over your body and that it won’t be cancerous I am praying for you. sharon

  • Truth says:

    Hi to both Cheryl and Sharon,

    I understand your point of view but I was wondering something. Does it matter who comes to the site whether they are believers or unbelievers? People have needs and sometimes we put the information in Google and we get routed here.

    I was lost and in dismay when I stumbled across the website. I’m at home recovering from a partial mastectomy. I will not know for sure if the tumor they removed is cancerous until the 1st week of December. I was not looking into loosing my children, I was wondering what I would do if they lost me. I have a 10 yr old special needs boy and I was wondering who would take care of him and bright 6 year old daughter and I would not like her light to go out if she had to deal with my loss.

    I know that the site may not offer the therapy of a grief counselor but those who don’t have the courage to seek help yet it may just offer them the courage to stand. I didn’t find what I was looking for that day but I was still assured when separate the flowers from the weed in the gallery of comments that life was hard, that even all of what I was going through in that moment that some people were dealing with more than I was and more importantly that life was a great gift from God and it was still worth fighting for.

    I want to thank Elkay for those kind words. It made my day.

  • Sharon says:

    to Cheryl thank you. if you can pray for people to come onto this site who does have sympathy for people who have lost children. I am praying for mentors to take that position as mentors who have lost children and want to mentor other people who have also lost children. if you are referring to Philip he is gone. you are right we should not allow people like that on the site. I am sorry you feel this site is not safe. I am praying for you- sharon

  • Cheryl says:

    Sharon- This is not a safe site because you do not have any mentors that know the depths of this despair and grief. My father died 7 years ago yesterday at the age of 67 and the loss of my own father does not hold a candle to the loss of my child. No one here can walk these broken people through this grieving process when none of you know what it feels like.
    it is also not a safe place because you allow people who are faithless to trample on the most vunerable of all people. Atheist and God haters should not even be allowed on this forum where the most wounded of all wounded people have come for some refuge. Keep these disputing people on one of your other sites concerning faith but not here where the afflicted have come to try to find some peace.
    Thank you for your condolenses yes I am clinging to Him the only peace in this storm.

  • Sharon says:

    to Cheryl I am sorry you don’t think this site is a safe place. my sympathy on your loss I have loss last night my aunt ok she is an older person. I have lost people in my life ok not children but I can’t imagine on what you are going through. I feel for you on your loss I know its not easy losing a child before you hut I pray that you can lean on God during this difficult time. to Amy. my sympathy but I am glad you are clinging that you will see your son some day in heaven it is a good thing being a Christian knowing on where they are. May God comfort all on this site on who lost children– sharon

  • Cheryl says:

    For those of you looking for comfort in the depth of grieving the loss of a child this website really offers little. It is not a safe place. Though Tom can offer you some insight to the love of the LORD, he himself has never experienced child loss and can not even imagine the depth of despair and the challenge that it brings to ones faith. The lost find it a place to bash God and call themselves humanitarians when they spew God hate at those most vulnerable and looking for reassurance in a God they once trusted.
    i would recommend the missfoundation for those who can relate to the devastation of child loss. It is not necessarily a sight that offers faith in child loss but it is a safe place and only allows those who have experienced child loss to participate.
    My son went to be with the LORD September 28,2015 and I am a faithful believer in Jesus Christ and I can tell you this is a most difficult, if not the most difficult journey any one will ever face. The LORD cares greatly for you and your pain and loves both you and your loved ones who have gone home. We will not get the answers we so desperately seek this side of heaven as to why this has happened but know that your heavenly Father wants to comfort you and try to lean on HIm.
    I wrote this piece this summer and thought I would share it with those of you who are suffering, I pray that God will bring His peace that surpasses all understanding and you can find some rest in that, although we are broken beyond words, our loved ones are in perfect peace and wait for us to be re united with them.

    Jesus Earthly Mother

    As the week approaches, the 28th of September, the saddest day of my life, I feel most reflective and sentimental. Today I was thinking about Mary, Jesus’ earthly mother, not that I suggest in any way that I should be compared with her, or my son to our savoir, but I was thinking I can imagine what Mary was feeling watching her son die and thinking,, “ I just don’t understand this, this is so horrible, where are you God, what is happening!” I wonder if she thought, “what went wrong, why is this happening, did I fail in someway, this is sorrow too big to carry!”
    Mary didn’t understand what God was doing or where He was in her greatest moment of sorrow, nor could she see any good in this horrible act. She couldn’t see the magnitude of good that would come from this horrible situation that seemed like only evil. As I reflect on Mary’s emotions I think of Molly Lindsay and Becky Butcher Stansbury and MarySue Lawrence and Sheri Roesel and I too, do not see why God has allowed this, but I am confident that those who have been chosen to carry great sorrow, have also been chosen to birth something of immense and eternal good. I know we can’t see the effects of it now, but I am confident that one day when we meet Jesus face to face, we will be humbled to know what we were entrusted with.

  • Amy says:

    I lost my precious 13 year old son 4 months ago. I still miss him as much as I did 2 weeks after his death. I just can’t believe that he is really gone. We have a huge void in our family and in our lives. I feel like I will never feel true joy again on this earth. I just can’t without my son. Our faith (my husband, my daughter, and myself) in knowing we will be reunited in heaven someday is what we cling to. I don’t know how anyone without faith could ever survive a loss as great as this. I’m so sorry for anyone who has ever had to endure this pain. May God help us all.

  • Elkay says:

    Truth, when I saw your post a few days ago, I copied it and saved it into my “files” because it spoke so openly and honestly about what faith is all about, trusting God when life does not make sense. Jesus called that “great faith” and it is what He will be looking for when He returns (Luke 18:8). Thank you very much for what you have said; your last paragraph in particular contains outstanding advice to anyone who has lost a child or any loved one. May God bless you today with exactly what He alone knows you need today.

  • Truth says:

    I am a Christian that doesn’t fit the mode of the traditional Christian way of thinking. I never pretend that things are okay when they are not. I don’t like or will I give traditional Christian answers to things or throw a bunch of bible verses to try and cover up any pain, thoughts or feelings. I believe in standing in your truth and feelings before God and man.

    So first of all you have every right to feel mad at God for loosing your child he is big enough to handle it. My mother lost 2 babies and almost 30 years later at my wedding her babies memories brought her to tears. So I want you to know that your pain and feeling is real.

    I am not going to tell you to get over it or some day that everything will make sense because for some people things fall in line while for others it doesn’t. I grew up in a third world country and I have seen generation after generation of people born and die in poverty while others escaped. So everyone does not have the same experiences.

    All I want to say that I applaud you for sharing your experience so that others that are going through the same thing knows that they are not alone in their feelings because that is where most people find strength, in numbers. I also want you to know that I am the mother of a special needs child that I have learned at night to cry after a difficult day, then I pray, then I sleep and the next morning I get up and face the day. I don’t do it with unrealistic optimism or hypocrisy or fakeness. I do it because I am still here and even before all these issues and losses came I had a purpose and a dream and I can’t let anything stop me.

    The worst thing anyone can do in times of chaos is abandon themselves where they loose touch with their mind body and spirit. That’s what the devil wants us to do so he can rob us of our true destiny. The Lord wants to bless us and some may ask then why did he give you that child and then take it away. But even in Noah’s life and death there was a blessing. He gave you love through that child, you called him Noah but God called him love. God knew he was the perfect prescription for a life like yours and a heart like yourd. He opened your heart to love through that child but there was a time frame. Its not how long he was here that is important but the fact that he was here that you had such a beautiful honor of being his mother.

    Give yourself time but in the meantime focus on your marriage also. Don’t lose everything because you lost one thing. Finally let his life live on by transcending his love to others. Help someone, hug someone.

  • Tom Tom says:

    Athiest—
    While this is not the forum to go into detail, I would be most happy to engage you in conversation. Among other things, your post reveals certain moral concerns that don’t make sense in an atheistic worldview, and you make blanket statements about things you know nothing about—for example, what does or doesn’t happen at death. If you’d like to back up your statements and objections, please go to the blog titled “Investigating Spirituality” and make a post. I’ll be glad to oblige your viewpoint there.

  • athiest says:

    Why do you all believe such utter crap in this so called god. If there is a god why is he so uterly selfish that he raises his own son from the dead yet not one of you has he raised your loved ones from the dead. Religion is way to comfort the grieving and make pots of money at the same time. Do you ever see a poor church?When you are dead you have no functioning organ or brain and dont know your dead. You see, hear and feel nothing. Wake up all of you and stop grievinf and enjoy your life as there is not another one

  • Sharon says:

    to Janet thank you for your comment for Regina I love that quote. and good for you for going to grief share I pray it helps you. I am praying for all of the people grieving their lost one. I pray God’s comfort on you all– sharon

  • Janet says:

    Regina,

    My deepest condolences..i lost my son four months to the day today…i feel i will never be the same..i send prayers for you and everyone here..We need to continue..i feel i will grieve the rest of my life for my son. I met a lady the other day she was about 80years old..she had told me she lost her son when he was 19years old..and she thinks and misses him still..it made me sad that..I have to be here without him..losing a child is out of sync..out of order..my friend who also lost her son last year two weeks after he was born..
    Sent me this quote…”The day I stop missing you is the day I will be with you again”.this is the hope we have to hold onto..his dad tells me everyday we will see him again..and that he is ok..and at peace…and that his world..the ones that olare left behind are the ones that suffers..,i know that cant take the pain away…but that is the hope that our God is merciful and loving..and i also go to GRIEFSHARE..they are all over the u.s. just google it.. i hope this helps everyone…keep praying…take care

  • Sharon says:

    to Sheldon thank you sooo much for taking Philip out of this site I was hoping someone would we couldn’t talk here on this site because of Philip insulting our faith so thank you again- God bless you sharon

  • Sharon says:

    to Regina my deepest sympathy to you on the death of your two sons how horrible for you to lost two sons. prayer father God I do pray for Regina I pray comfort over you. its ok to grieve and take the time to grieve I can’t imagine on what you are feeling my heart goes our to you may God comfort you at this time I will continue to pray for you— sharon

  • Regina says:

    I lost son two yrs ago and still am grieving please help

  • Janet says:

    Hi everyone,
    I just wanted to say..that as a grieving parent..that..all this commotion on this site is ridiculous..I thank everyone for the uplifting words.. I am a believer yes..but when i first posted..i didnt appreciate..a certain someone…that it does more harm than good to believe..because ..my God didnt save my son..I am a believer…and as other believers..we should come together and not pull eachother down..even if someones take is different than yours..maybe they misunderstood..or the understanding of scripture is different than yours..but the fact that we do believe in Jesus and God we should look past this..I hope i think her name is Cheryl will continue on this site because she gives good positive messages as well as Tom and many others..as for the. nonbelievers..well they dont believe..but i think they shouldnt persuade us not to believe in God..but as believers we are somewhat comforted by scriptures…
    Even nonbelievers..need comfort..that is too why they are coming here to be uplifted..but we shouldnt be so negative..and if we are..we should get off this site…

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