Prayer has been shown scientifically to benefit individuals and increase their wellbeing. In an article in Psychology Today, Clay Routledge shares 5 ways prayer has been shown to help:
- boost self-control
- make people ‘nicer’
- aid forgiveness
- increase trust between individuals praying together
- decrease health issues connected with stress
Spiritual care is one area that is rarely highlighted alongside emotional and physical care in healing after miscarriage and pregnancy loss, but I wanted to create a site which would include healing help for all three areas of our being: our body, soul and spirit. Of those five areas above, stress and unforgiveness (resentments against others because of jealousy or offenses) are frequently part of our healing journeys and as a result, we also often need boosted self-control too!
Anyone who wants to can pray
The great thing about prayer is that you don’t even have to believe in a higher being or God to pray. You just have to believe in the possibility of God. Whilst my faith background is Christian, I wanted this site to be accessible and helpful for all women, regardless of their beliefs. I am sharing in this article things that I have personally found helpful, but I want you to feel free to take what is helpful and leave the rest.
I don’t know what you have been taught about prayer, about who can pray and what you have to do to pray, but I want to offer a guide to you today with some basics and show you how prayer can be a tool in healing after miscarriage and pregnancy loss.
If you are someone who isn’t sure if God exists, this first prayer is for you! You don’t have to believe in God to pray these prayers, but if He does exist and wants to have a relationship with you and you want to be open to that, here are some words you can use. You can say them out loud or in your heart wherever you are- the important thing is just to mean the words!
God, I don’t even know if you exist, but if you do, would you please reveal yourself to me? If you are real, and you love me, please show me this week. Please open my spiritual eyes and ears to recognize You, because if You are real and You care I want to know You and be in relationship with You.
This is a prayer that I have prayed personally and seen God answer for others too, so look out for His personal responses to your prayer this coming week!
What is prayer?
Prayer is communicating with the Creator of the universe, God. It is recognizing that you are part of a created world that was designed for you to live and relate to the Creator and other people.
Although you can pray set prayers, you don’t have to. Prayer after miscarriage and pregnancy loss can be a great way to express your feelings (the anger, the injustice, the sadness, the loneliness…), desires and hopes to God and aligning yourself with His heart. Don’t worry about God being offended. There are plenty of Psalms in the Bible where David expresses his anger and frustration to God and David was considered a close friend of God. Prayer can also be about asking Him for help, strength, healing, and direction for yourself or others. Prayers don’t need to be long. They are more about connecting with God intentionally, like connecting to wifi and noticing when that connection has stopped, rather than feeling you have to spend your time looking at the wifi signal. When you feel that connection with God is weak, (for example, at a time when you feel your peace going and stress rising) it is time to come closer again and pray again and ask for help.
I believe in a God who is loving and cares so much about us. I believe He wants us to know Him and what He is like and so for that reason, He came down to earth Himself in human form. That historic person is Jesus. That revelation has been very helpful to me personally in processing my miscarriage and pregnancy loss because for a long time I felt that either God was powerless or cruel for allowing my children to die. What changed my opinion was reading a book called ‘God is Good: He’s better than you think‘ and thinking about the person of Jesus and realising God’s role is to rescue us from death and sickness and pain, not to cause it. If you want to know what God is like all you have to do is look at the person of Jesus. If I wanted to know if God caused my miscarriage or sickness, pain etc I could look at two things – whether there was sickness or death in heaven and at the life of Jesus. Jesus never ‘blessed’ anyone with sickness or miscarriage. He always did the opposite – he spoke life and freedom, brought healing and spoke regularly about a reality, a heavenly reality, beyond this earth.
An ancient example of prayer:
Jesus also taught his followers (and us) how to pray and his prayer, which I am paraphrasing, said:
Author of Life, Loving Father, I acknowledge You and Your goodness,
May Your goodness and Your loving will (to bring life, wholeness, and healing) happen here on earth as it already is happening where you dwell in Heaven,
Please give us access to that heavenly provision (physical, emotional, spiritual provision) today,
Forgive us where we have blocked and hindered your goodness,
Help us to forgive others where they have hurt and rejected us,
And lead us away from taking the path that leads to more division from You,
Rescue us from all the enemy’s schemes and plans against us,
For You are the One who will have the Victory,
From now and into forever.
Prayer after pregnancy loss: my story
After my pregnancy losses, I sometimes found it difficult to pray. I didn’t know what to say and I didn’t have the words. I found set prayers, using other people’s words helpful. That is why I have put together a collection of set prayers specific to pregnancy loss in this article. Set prayers like the ones in this article can be helpful as a springboard to our prayers, but they are not necessary – it is just as valid to pray from your own heart in your own words. In fact, it is about your heart, so whether you use other people’s words or your own, God knows if you are being sincere or just trying to say empty words like a magic spell. Prayer is about a personal relationship with God, not about saying the right ‘magic’ words.
Prayer in my miscarriage healing
During grief, there have been times when I have felt God far away and have needed other people’s words to help me connect and at other times I have found it easy to connect with God. I would still feel great sadness, brokenness, and other emotions, but I found it helpful to draw near to God and share those emotions with Him. Here is an example of steps I would personally take to pray which you may find helpful:
1) Draw close to God by expressing myself to Him:
I would close my eyes and breathe deeply, quietening my heart and then express my emotions to God, either out loud, in my thoughts or through writing (I would open my eyes again for that bit!). I would tell God how sad or frustrated or hurt I felt and why. I would acknowledge any behaviour on my part that had been hurtful or wrong (jealousy, hurtful actions etc…) and ask for forgiveness.
2) Believe He is able to give me help, strength, and healing.
As I connected with God, I would then ask for His help. I would ask Him to give me the strength to face the day or a hard situation (like a baby shower or a meeting when many babies would be present). I would ask Him for healing where my heart felt bitter or burdened. Sometimes I would visualize in my mind God placing a gift of strength or forgiveness in my hands and receive it.
3) Respond in action or rest
I would also create space to allow God to speak into my heart through a peaceful thought. Sometimes I would feel a warmth like a comforting hug and just rest in God’s presence.
Other times I felt I should do something – an idea would come into my heart of how I should deal with a particular person or situation with grace. Sometimes I would have a thought to read a particular book or a verse from the Bible or to reach out to a counselor or friend to talk. I found that writing down these ideas then helped me go back and assess whether they were good, potentially God-given ideas or just some crazy thoughts! Don’t worry if you aren’t sure what you should do – try and follow the sense of peace in your heart, but don’t become anxious about it. It is not about getting it right, but about trying to walk in the right direction. Sometimes we take diversions on the way and that is fine!
Set prayers to help you pray when you don’t have the words:
Here are some prayers that you may like to use as tools in your own pregnancy loss healing. You may like to print them out and put them somewhere for when you need them.
Prayer for forgiveness for blaming God:
God, I am sorry when I have chosen to believe that You caused my pregnancy loss and that I have blamed You when you are only loving and caring. You showed us through Jesus, who never once caused sickness or pain, but who always brought healing and life, what you are really like. You showed us in Jesus that you are a God who cries with us, who sits with us in pain and grief, and who also brings life again.
Prayer to invite God into the healing:
God, I choose to invite you into my life and into the healing of my heart. I give you permission to walk this healing journey with me and to help me, guide me, strengthen me and heal my heart again.
Prayer for forgiving others:
God, I am sorry where I have allowed unforgiveness and bitterness to grow up in my heart because of my pregnancy loss pain. I choose to offer a free gift of forgiveness to ________ for _______. I choose to let go of my hurt towards them and to choose freedom. Please bring me your peace and strength.
Prayer to ask for strength:
God, I feel so weak and tired because of my pregnancy loss grief. Please give me the strength to keep engaging with the emotions, with life and with the pain towards the healing of my heart. Please give me the strength to say yes to the things I need to do, and no to the things I don’t. Help me to rest enough and to look to you for supernatural strength. God, please be my strength because I don’t have any left.
Prayer for gratefulness:
God, please help me to be grateful for life when I see other women around me who are pregnant or with their babies and children. Please help my heart to bless their lives and to believe that you still have good things for me.
Prayer for guidance and peace:
God, I need your help. I am not at peace and I don’t know what to do. Please bring your peace into my heart and guide me in the way of life. Teach me to trust you and your ways when I don’t understand.
I hope you have found these prayers helpful. Do let me know in the comments or by sending me a personal message. (Click on ‘contact’ at the top of the page.) You may like to share these prayers with others too who may need some spiritual care after miscarriage or pregnancy loss.
As well as caring for our spirits, caring for our bodies and souls (our emotions) is important too. That is why I have put together a free guide with 10 self-care ideas especially for women after miscarriage and pregnancy loss. You can pick up your free guide by clicking here or on the image below: