My story begins in December 2020, a few days before Christmas. As we all know, 2020 wasn’t the easiest year for anyone. My own life had taken on a darkness in many forms around me; but this December, this Christmas season, in the midst of that darkness, I was so overjoyed to learn of a ray of sunshine that was coming just a few months from then.

I was pregnant with my second child. So this particular night, December 22, 2020, I was dancing in the living room by our Christmas tree to Christmas songs with my 2-year-old daughter, while my husband, just outside our living room, was cutting firewood for our fireplace. I hadn’t remembered the last time I had felt so hopeful as I had in those past weeks; looking forward to the blessing ahead. 

Then, in the blink of an eye, the highest of highs became the lowest of lows. A trip to the bathroom changed my life. What looked like was going to be a night of memories made, and a beautiful future anticipated, turned into me curled up under my Christmas tree, crying out to my heavenly Father in the most desperate of prayers: God, please save my baby. I want this baby. Please let me hold this baby. Please let me watch this baby grow. Please, LORD. And then my capacity for words left me, and all I could get out were sobs that wretched at my chest and made my head spin. My husband was devastated and felt helpless. 

Glory

I sing on the worship team at church, and I was due to sing for our Christmas services the next day. I thought about canceling. But God placed something profound in my heart. His peace. His strength. He all but spoke to me the words: I will use this, Aubrie. It will be for my glorySo the decision was made. The next day I got up there and sang a song about Christ coming in the form of a baby, to save me from my sins, knowing that someday I would meet the baby I was actively losing. The lyrics of this particular song kept echoing God’s glory. I wanted my baby’s short life on earth to make a difference for God’s kingdom, so I affectionately named my baby, Glory. This was a dedication to God’s ability to use even this, to bring about His perfect plans, and believing in faith that He would actually do it. It wasn’t because of my own strength, or that this came easy to me by any means, because it didn’t. I truly believe God was working on my heart through this, and he lavished on me His grace and promises, as is His nature as our good Father. 

God’s Path Revealed

God had actually planted a seed sometime before my own miscarriage. I had served as Client Services Coordinator at our local pregnancy center, ministering to women with unplanned pregnancies. I had even had a client who miscarried her precious baby, and I met with her weekly for quite some time, without a specific plan and no personal experience with miscarriage loss of my own. I tried to help her process through her loss in a God-honoring way. I wondered where women had been turning to in my own community when struggling with this type of loss. I made phone calls to local churches and pregnancy centers to see if they had a curriculum or Bible study for women experiencing this loss, and I came up empty. So, I improvised the best I could, but really I was just someone she could talk to. Someone who knew about her baby and would remember her baby with her. 

After becoming pregnant with my daughter, I stepped down from the role of Client Services Coordinator, and became a board member instead; choosing the role of a stay-at-home mom, but still having a passion for pregnancy center ministry. As a board member, I attended conferences and seminars to gain more knowledge of pregnancy center ministry; and in October 2020, I attended a training conference that discussed curricula for post-abortive healing, general grief healing, and healing from past sexual soul ties. Again, the faint tug on my heart towards miscarriage and stillbirth ministry stirred within me. I told the directors of our pregnancy center, who were both with me at the conference, that I was passionate about this topic, and that I would help in any way I could. My fear was that I hadn’t personally experienced it, and therefore I didn’t think I could lead a program like that. Two months later, that would be a different story. Looking back, God could’ve used me anyway, but I didn’t recognize that then. 

Juniper

Months had passed since the loss of Glory, and I found that I was pregnant again. This time I was more apprehensive to be excited than I was the time before. In fact, I googled constantly for the signs of miscarriage and worried about every feeling or lack of feeling. God had a different plan for this baby, and on May 21, 2021, my baby was born into heaven. This time I felt no peace. I was devastated. I felt lost. I questioned why this was happening. The lies attacked my mind: You wouldn’t be a good enough mother. You worried, so this was your fault. You didn’t have enough faith. God is punishing you. Looking back, it was incredible to see how quickly these lies and bitterness took root in my broken heart. I call this period of time in my story “wandering through the wilderness” because that’s what I was doing; numbly wandering through the unknown wilderness.

Finally, I reached out to another pregnancy center quite a ways away from me that offered a miscarriage help program, and I signed up and went. I am so grateful for this period of time because it encouraged me to look at my hurt instead of distracting myself from it. It showed me that God could use this experience to help others in my community. I also started attending biblical counseling sessions with a couple from my church and had the realization that God’s word really is sufficient. Our help, our hope, the truth can be found in God’s infallible word. I took classes on biblical counseling, and the fuzzy picture of God’s plan became more and more clear.

I applied myself to writing a completely biblically-based program for women facing miscarriage and stillbirth loss, and I presented it to my board of directors for our local pregnancy center. They unanimously decided to add my program, Juniper Glory (named after my children in heaven), to the programs offered to our clients as of early 2023. Since then, I have been walking with women through this Bible study and watching God do what he does: change lives and bring about beauty from brokenness. 

Why Pregnancy Centers Should Offer Miscarriage Healing Resources

I believe that every pregnancy center in our nation should offer a biblically-based program for miscarriage and stillbirth loss. This type of loss is unfortunately common. One in four pregnancies that we know of end in miscarriage. This type of loss is also less politically charged than the topic of abortion.

I encourage my clients to name their babies. One, because they deserve a name as unique beings, formed by God with intention, human, set apart from creation; and two, because my daughter is growing up in a home where she knows her mommy and daddy have babies in heaven, with Jesus, whole and complete. She knows their names. She knows they are important. She knows their lives are valuable. My daughter will grow up in a home where the question of the value of the unborn life is answered.

As pregnancy centers see clients do the same, their children will hopefully grow up knowing that life in the womb is valuable. Perhaps, the most important reason I believe every pregnancy center should offer this type of program is the unique opportunities to share the Gospel. Many of us know that God sometimes uses the most difficult things in life to draw us into a relationship with Him. Just like any other program we offer, we have repeated opportunities to share the love of Jesus with our clients by speaking hope for the future through a relationship with Christ. We can also encourage believers to grow deeper in their relationship with God by tackling lies our clients are believing and replacing them with truth.

His Plans are Perfect

My babies Glory and Juniper are whole with Christ. They matter. They will not be forgotten. God did exactly what He spoke to my heart. He took their tiny lives and made something beautiful. And now, as you read these words, He has used them to call out to a nation of believers, who otherwise would have never known they existed, with the hopes that every pregnancy center will stand in this gap and offer a program like Juniper Glory. 

 

Aubrie Decker serves as a volunteer who started and runs a biblically-based miscarriage and stillbirth support program called Juniper Glory through Heartbeat-Hope Medical of Fremont and Tiffin, Ohio.  Aubrie also serves as a board member of Heartbeat-Hope Medical. She started “Dignified,” a movement that uses the sale of bracelets to bring dignity to the unborn lost to abortion and raises funds for the abortion recovery ministry offered through Heartbeat-Hope Medical. Aubrie leads worship at her church Grace Community in Fremont, Ohio. Aubrie also owns an art business called Elven Elm Art. You can follow Aubrie on Instagram @decker.aubrie.dignified or @aubriedeckerartist.