What To Do When A Child Dies

On Sunday, May 22nd, Dr. Heidi Lovett a member of our devotional prayer call group lost her son Nnamoi Richard Louis. Nnamoi is a Nigerian word meaning “worthy of my father’s love.” The devotional that follows is our attempt to show honor to our Heavenly Father and comfort to Heidi and her family.

It is the call, the notification or the bedside visitation that no parent wants to receive or make.

It is the announcement, the realization, the understanding that your child is dead.

Losing a child is something that should not happen. As parents we want to see our children in the moments that matter:

– Dancing on stage
– Playing in a game
– Attending the prom
– Graduating from school
– Getting Married
– Having Children making you a grandparent

We should not be seeing our children in a body bag, or in an urn or in a coffin. Our children our pride, our joy our gift from God should be alive not dead.

However, as we awake this morning that is the reality for our sister Dr. Heidi Lovett.

Her son, Nnamoi Richard Louis, bone of her bone, flesh of her flesh, borne from her womb, nursed from her breast has died.  And with Nnamoi’s death our sister Heidi is feeling pain, sorrow and grief that we who have not lost a child cannot imagine.

Mary the mother of Jesus also endured the death of a son. John 19:25 tells us that Mary was at the cross during the Crucifixion.

  • Mary was at the cross watching her son been strung up
  • Mary was at the cross seeing the nails being drilled into her son’s hands
  • Mary was at the cross witnessing it all the soldiers mocking her son, gambling for his clothes, and piercing him in his side.
  • Mary was at the cross when her son Jesus breathed his last and died.

Jesus knew the pain, suffering and sorrow caused when a parent loses a child.

  • Jesus saw the death of a child first hand when he raised the widow’s son at Nain as described in Luke 7:11-17.
  • Jesus saw the death of a child first hand when he raised Jairus daughter as depicted in Matthew 9:18-26; Mark 5:21-43.
  • And Jesus saw death first hand when he raised Lazarus from the dead as told to us in Luke 8:40-56 and John 11:1-44.

Today as our thoughts turn to Heidi and the task she must do this weekend to entomb her son. I ask you to consider these thoughts:

First: When death comes Jesus has no intention to leave us alone in our sorrow, pain and grief.

John 19:26-27 tells us: When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

From most biblical accounts that disciple was John. We are all disciples who Jesus loves and as such we should look after and comfort Heidi and all others who have experienced the death of a love one. However, as disciples we should extend our love beyond this time of immediate grief. We should and

I know that this group will be with her in the days and weeks ahead. Lifting Heidi up in prayer and extending to her the kindness demanded by our Lord and Savior.

The second thought: If our child is a disciple of Christ we will see them again.

John 3:16 tell us clearly: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

While the Bible does not mention Jesus visiting his mother, after His death. An assumption can be made that Mary would be among Jesus’s disciples to see him herself or at least in contact with them enough to know what had happened.

Remember at the crucifixion, Jesus entrusted his mother into John’s care. Seeing as how John is among the first disciples to witness and speak with Christ after his resurrection, surely Mary knew what was going on.

Nothing can eliminate the grief that we will feel when we lose a child. However, as a disciple of Christ if we can stand confident in the promises of God that we will see our child again.

Finally: As a Disciples of Christ we need to make our children Disciples of Christ.

Proverbs 22:6 tells us Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.
And in a world of video games, internet, bad people and other temptations that training up will be difficult. However, as parents we must do all we can to show our children the way of the Lord.

So our hearts and prayers go to Heidi and her family. As disciples of Christ we will never leave her, as disciples of Christ we will see our child again, and as disciples of Christ we must work to make our children disciples of Christ as well.

Heidi we love you, we are praying for you and we look forward to your return to us.

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