Monday, April 27, 2009

{bEhInD tHe ScEnEs}

So, time has gotten away from me with all the responsibilities of single parenting , taking care of my own health (finally) and doing this ministry and all of it's tasks. Please be in prayer, as behind the scenes, the often lengthy process of becoming a tax deductable organization insue with the ministry. The following is the "narrative" that basically is my "advertisement" to the IRS in revealing the need for this ministry. In case you are wondering....I promise there will be no more " " to irritate you in the following sentences! :) Instead my prayer is that these words will be gripping in the hearts of those that make the decision (swiftly) of this ministry being given a bigger platform. GOD OPEN EYES AND HEARTS AND POUR YOUR SPIRIT OF FAVOR AND COMPASSION ON THEM AS ONLY YOU CAN.......MAY THIS MINISTRY DRAW HEARTS TO YOU AND YOUR LOVE!

The Greatest Blessing Narrative

There is little that can disarm and tear at the heart of an expectant mother like having her baby pass away. Diagnosed with a terminal illness while still in the womb, or stillborn with no explanation, the level of trauma and heartache that she and the family will go through is more then words can really convey. Statistics of this tragic scenario taking place is far more then one might expect. There are 109 stillbirths that happen each day in this country alone. That is over 40,000 babies who’s mothers, and families, will be hurting and struggling to understand, and wade through the sea of emotion that is inevitably to follow. Their faith or lack there of is likely to take the biggest hit of all.

On December 15th, 2007 my world was forever changed as I stepped foot into the hospital, very sure that my son, Macsen Danforth was no longer with us but had made his exodus Home, Home to be with the Lord. My stay at the hospital was long. This was a fairly new experience for me, grief. It was difficult being on the receiving end of so many tears and speechlessness. Even the nurses were unsure what to say or how to say it. Pictures were taken of my boy, and foot and hand casts were made, all a blessing to me in these painful hours. But I also remember being presented a “memory box” from the staff. A box that held no beauty, importance or presence of hope in this Heaven that I was sure my son now lived. I am a very visual person and I don’t only find inspiration and motivation from beautiful things, but I also know now that I find comfort in my grief from it as well. This box I was given was not something that I felt comfort from or saw myself presenting, proudly to anyone that might come to visit. Of course, I was gracious and grateful for the thought, but I recall thinking that this idea could be so much more. Nothing can replace this sweet life that I have had to temporarily say good bye to, but keeping his things somewhere lovely certainly had its place in this pain I was feeling.

When I arrived home from the hospital I became obsessed with finding others out there in the world of internet that had walked this same painful road, and had lived to tell about it. There was much to find, and many that were walking it. But few if any were walking it with the veracious confidence in the place their little ones were now living. Few that clung to the hope in Heaven that we as Christians most certainly have. Day after day passed, all while I gathered mental notes and received a vision to pursue creating the very thing that I was sure would have been comfort to me, a beautiful memory box. It would serve as a perfect example of what my eyes could look upon as a reminder of the place beyond this world that my baby now lived. A place I could look forward to sharing with him one day. I could remind myself of that place when the pain would all but drown me in tears.
I was anxious and driven to construct a box, one more appropriate for my boy and all of his earthly things. It came to me quickly and when I was finished I felt peace about this place I could put all things of Macsen’s, my son.

The genesis of The Greatest Blessing was soon after a reality. One by one I was given news of others that were experiencing this same tragedy and I came along side and served them with what I knew from experience would be some comfort.
As the days passed by I was contacting anyone and everyone that I felt had some kind of item or talent that would be a blessed addition to the box. My first real thought was to add a tea to the box that when consumed would help aid the mommy’s body in halting the lactation process. After saying good bye to your baby, having the constant reminder of the absence of that little one to feed is like reopening the wound over and over. Also accumulated in this box were a journal and pen, a candle for lighting in remembrance, a flaxseed and lavender pillow for warming and holding in times when empty arms are overwhelming. There is also a necklace for mommy with a pendant of a baby’s foot print and also a small gender specific colored baby bracelet. Grief books, angel lapel pin and a note from me. The hope is that eventually, as more and more donors are contacted and burdened to help, that these boxes will be so crammed with therapeutic and loving gifts that the box is a challenge to close.

Initially the thinking was that these boxes would be meant to serve those in my immediate local community, however, after starting the ministry blog and crossing the path of so many other families it has been a real honor to send several boxes back east and in extending cities here is the Pacific Northwest. It is a sadly needed ministry. There are similar ministries out there, but this one is unique in its premise. The box is hand painted and decorated in a heavenly style to help divert eyes off of the temporal and onto the eternal. Not just that, but the thought, heart and experience that has gone into each gift within this box. All selected as I draw from my own heartbreaking loss.

Nothing and no one can bring these little lives back. But there is One that can heal their hurt and reveal to them the purpose He intends for this chosen journey. My consuming prayer is that this memory box and all of its contents will reveal this One to them.
This One that is King Jesus.


Leslie said...

This is beautifully written. I pray that you accomplish all that God has set before you. Your words have been a comfort to me, and there are so many others who also need your comfort. You and Macsen are a blessing!

Rachel said...

Very beautifully written, indeed. And hopefully this narrative may touch the heart of those who read it, with the hope of Christ.

Jennifer Ross said...

The way that you put that together was perfect. My prayer is that you will be able to bless the lives of other people who have loss little ones, giving them a hope that can only come from our Lord.

Ruth said...

Well said, well done, good and faithful servant! I pray that it works and that you get awarded what you needed to make this everything that God wants it to be to serve Him and others. To Him be the glory! Thank-You!!!