Valleys of Sorrow to Rivers of Joy

How do you “celebrate” the birthday of a child who has died? There’s no guidebook for that, no answer that works for everyone. For me it means writing.

Writing is my way to reflect on everything we experienced. It’s my way to honor Faith’s short life here on earth. And when writing I pray that someone – even just one person – can find encouragement, strength and hope in what I share. Sadly there are many who have walked or will walk a similar road. If you are one of those people, I pray that these words bring comfort and remind you that you are not alone.

There is a beautiful Jars of Clay song that I often think of in regards to our journey after the loss of our first daughter, Faith. These words especially resonate with me…

I will sing of Your mercy, that leads me through valleys of sorrow, to rivers of joy.

Near the end the song, after these words are sung, there is a weighty pause. The music stops. The singing stops. Silence for a few long seconds. And then one single word – “yeah”.

That part always gives me goosebumps.

The silence is so full. It’s as if everything comes down to that moment. You can say the words, but do you truly believe them?

In that pause I let the truth of those words sink in…

I will sing of Your mercy, that leads me through valleys of sorrow, to rivers of joy.

Yes, I do believe it.

I believe it with full confidence. God has led me and been with me always. He was there in the midst of the valley of sorrow and He is here with me now in the rivers of joy filling my life. His mercy is constant through it all.

Life is always changing. My life is different today than it was four years ago in the days waiting for Faith to be born. And four years from now it will look different still.

But God is the same and nothing can change who He is. No circumstances or passing of time. Not the deepest valley of sorrow nor fullest river of joy. His love, grace and mercy are steadfast.

This week, in honor of Faith’s 4th birthday, I will be sharing a series of posts about our journey through valleys of sorrow to rivers of joy. I pray that through these words you will see our incredible God who has sustained us every step of the way.


For those of you who followed my previous blog, you may see excerpts that look familiar but there will be new writings too so I hope you’ll join me.

For those who do not know our story, you may want to read a couple entries from my previous blog through the following links. Four years ago today I shared this post – Hold Me Jesus – about our baby’s condition. We didn’t know then that she was a little girl who would be held by Jesus herself moments after she was born. On June 15th, 2012 we met our sweet Faith.




5 thoughts on “Valleys of Sorrow to Rivers of Joy

  1. nonnieleigh says:

    Always a comfort when I read your writings! So much Truth is always included. And while I always hope no one has to walk this path, I am grateful for those who share their hearts about their journey. Always thankful for you and Steve and precious Natalie and looking forward to meeting Faith one day.


  2. wieckling says:

    Your writings do help x from one bereaved mum to another ❤️ it was our son’s first Heavenly birthday in March this year, his 21st and we had a party for him with family and friends and celebrated all the beautiful things about him that made him who he was. I wrote a story about Jacob’s party on my blog. Writing helps me too


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