LaKeisha Rainey Collins: Beauty for Ashes Column
From loss to wholeness: God will make it all beautiful in
His timing
Blog by Lakeisha Rainey Collins
Posted June 5, 2017
I can still hear those gut-wrenching words spoken
by the Ultrasound Technician as I laid on the
examining table of that cold, dim room – “I’m so
sorry, Mrs. Collins, your baby doesn’t have a
heartbeat.”

Although it’s been close to five years, the memory
of it all remains fresh.

My husband Jeremy and I were expecting our fourth
little munchkin and, after having three sons, we
were thrilled at the thought of finally getting the little
princess our family desired. We
knew this would be
our girl. I can’t speak for my husband, but no one
could convince me otherwise. It was such an
exciting time.

I always had fairly good pregnancies and enjoyed
the sweet honor of carrying life inside my womb.
This fourth time around had been no different.
Credit: Getty/Blend Images JGI/Jamie Grill
But, suddenly, without warning, our world came crashing down when, at a routine checkup while 14
weeks along in my pregnancy, there was no heartbeat.

No one, nothing, could prepare me for the heartbreak that accompanied such a realization. It hit me in
the heart heavier than a million tons of bricks and I felt like something had snuck up on me and
sucked every single ounce of life out of me. To date, losing our baby is one of the toughest ordeals I
have ever had to face. Emotionally, it took me out; spiritually, I died.

For the life of me, I could not understand why God would do such a thing to me. Yes, I blamed Him. In
my mind, if according to Jeremiah 29:11 He knows the plans He has for me, and those plans include
to prosper and not harm me, then why was I experiencing this excruciating pain that was no fault of my
own? Nothing made sense.

But wait. As if that wasn’t a great enough loss, exactly a week later my husband lost his job; six
months after that, we lost our house.

Really, God?

From one situation to the next, I had no time to catch my breath or recover from the last blow. I felt so
forsaken, so betrayed by my Father. Broken doesn’t even begin to describe the state of my heart,
mind, and spirit.

Life often comes fast and hard, right? That certainly was the case during that season of my life.

I remember falling into a deep, deep depression. Living in the upstairs portion of a family member’s
home with my husband and our three children, I felt my life had fallen to shambles and I had no idea
how to pull it back together. Hurting and disoriented from suffering loss after loss, I questioned God’s
love for me and all of those
good plans He had for me, because there was nothing loving or good
about what I was going through.

Honestly, I gave up. I gave up living day-to-day life. I gave up praying. I gave up faith. It was too much.
It hurt too much. It was too unfair. I was done. I remember a friend quoting Proverbs 24:10 to me. She
said, “Keisha, but if you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small.” My response was a dry, “I’
m fine with that.” And in that moment, I really was. I felt like those back-to-back blows had taken all of
the strength I had, so fainting and having small strength was a result that didn’t bother me one bit.

See how pain will make you angry, callous, and bitter? I was all of that.

But thank God, His love is so amazingly unconditional and unchanged by our ever-changing
emotions. In my desolate place, He never stopped sending me reminders of His promise to restore
everything I’d lost. I recall not being able to sleep one night, so I sat up to pray. Instead of words
flowing from my lips, a flood of tears poured from my eyes. I heard the Lord so clearly in my spirit say
to me, “I will give you beauty for these ashes. Trust me.”

In that moment, I chose to trust that God had a plan bigger than what I was able to see or understand
and He would somehow cause it all to work for my good (Romans 8:28). And you know what? He who
promised is faithful (Hebrews 10:23).

God not only healed my hurt, but He restored everything.

A year after losing our home, we moved into a brand new one. After the ordeal of my husband losing
his job, God blessed him with his lifelong dream of operating his own business. To top it all off, on
December 11, 2014 – exactly two years and two months later – I gave birth to a princess.

Talk about beauty for ashes!

It is inevitable that life will totally knock you off your feet and snatch the wind right out of you. Most
times, you won’t understand why. It will hurt deeply. It will turn your world upside down. It will cause you
to question God. It will make you second-guess your faith. You will feel forsaken. You will feel cursed.
You will feel doomed.

Hear this – The brokenness may be brutal, but it is not fatal. God will restore and you will recover. It’s
not a lose-lose situation for you, my friend; our Father will never leave you in shambles. He restores.
He heals. He redeems. He is faithful.

It may be quite ugly right now, but God will make it all beautiful in His timing. You’ll see.

LaKeisha Rainey Collins is an Mobile, Alabama-based wife, mom of three boys and one girl, Founder
of Beauty for Ashes, Inc. and author of two books --
Beautiful Me and My Baby Has Wings. Learn
more about her
here.


This blog is part of EEW Magazine's June 2017 online issue.
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