Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hope Mommy

I am not an angel mommy.  I know that isn't exactly what you were expecting me to say tonight, but I have really struggled with the term "angel baby" and "angel mommy".

Ever since the  day Holden was born, I have tried not to use it.  I remember a few things standing out to me from the day I was sitting in the hospital bed, and one of them is being offended by someone calling my baby an angel.  (A well-meaning friend, of course!)  In fact, if you have read my blog before, you will notice that not until this past week or so did I finally cave in to the term.  I used "heaven babies" and "heaven mommies" because I just feel really uncomfortable with the term "angel baby".

Now I know in this angel mommy community, the term is almost necessary.  It is identifiable and links us.  But since this is my blog, I'd like to get on my soapbox a little.

I don't want to sound all preachy (I really dislike it when I do, sorry), but I have read the Bible, and have never once come across anything that says our babies turn into angels.  In fact, I have read about angels quite a bit.  Let me just tell you, Holden is not one of them.  Angels bring people to their knees in fear.  Angels fight spiritual battles.  Angels have swords.  (I don't think Holden is brandishing a sword at the moment.  Really.  Unless he's playing with his "hope friends" and they are using play swords...but I don't even think that is realistic.)

I referenced some passages on angels at  Let's take a look:

Genesis 19:1-2  The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. “My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning." (Emphasis mine.)  

Numbers 22:23  When the donkey saw the angel of the LORD standing in the road with a drawn sword in his hand, it turned off the road into a field. (Even the donkey was fearful.)

Judges 13:20  For it came to pass, when the flame went up toward heaven from off the altar, that the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it, and fell on their faces to the ground. (Emphasis mine.)

1 Chronicles 21:16, 30  And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces. But David could not go before it to enquire of God: for he was afraid because of the sword of the angel of the LORD.

Psalm 78:49  He unleashed against them his hot anger, his wrath, indignation and hostility— a band of destroying angels. (Emphasis mine.)

Matthew 13:41  The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. (Not exactly sweet fluffy little things...)

Matthew 13:47-50  Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish.  When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away.  This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (Again, not so sweet.)

Matthew 28:2  And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

1 Corinthians 6:3  Do you not know that we will judge angels?

(Those are just a few passages with the mention of angels.  I urge you to look up more of them.  It's an interesting study.  The entire book of Revelation mentions angels quite a bit.  None of them are sweet little chunky dears, with soft white wings and halos.)

Although I am doing something very unusual, and probably about to be unpopular, especially in this community, I am going to refer to myself as a Hope Mommy, and my son as a Hope Baby.  You know why?  Because I have the awesome, glorious, blessed hope of seeing him again one day.  It is what gets me up and going in the morning.  And it's scriptural.  And it's my blog. :)

Holden Newell, my little "Hope Baby", gives me hope.  I pray he gives others hope as well.

Titus 2:13 While we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.


  1. I totally agree my friend!! Well said! Your scriptural knowledge never ceases to amaze me! I have always struggled with calling people angels as well because clearly we do not become angels but like the scripture you quoted we are recognized above the angels. Amazing God loves us THAT much because I find it hard to believe we are more deserving than His army of angels. Holden is in his perfect form living where the lion lays down with the lamb to rest. It is the ultimate baby proof place! He know's no fears but only joy, and he has an Army of angels on his side!! Love you so very much!

  2. yeah, hope mommies! spread the word. ;)

    i love you sarah, and i love this post. and i love our Jesus, who has saved us to the utmost, and enables us to hope for heaven and the joy of seeing our children again. by His blood we are healed!

  3. Hope has become one of favorite words ever since we lost Landry. I love Hope and what we means to us that have all lost babies way too soon.
    Hope Mommy brings to tears to my eyes...

  4. I agree with Erin! I like Hope better than Angel. I have struggled with the term as well, Sarah, knowing that angels are Heavenly creatures and people don't become angels when they go to Heaven, but caved into the phrase because I couldn't think of what else to say and it is so popular in our community of Mommies. I will now adopt the term "Hope". I love you! Thank you so much for doing such great scriptural work!

  5. i have thought the same thing so many times me it has always been more of just a "term" but i guess to some people maybe they do acutally think the baby become an angel...i rarely use the term either...mostly just referrring to Tatum as "my girl", but when i do it is more of my angel in terms of her sweetness and perfection- just like i refer to callyn as my angel now. i love the hope baby even more---but i can say that callyn joy is my hope baby just as much as tatum!!! hope for different reasons! thanks for such a great post! praying it will open the eyes to many!!!

  6. I love it! I haven't referred to myself as an angel mommy or Claire as an angel baby and in 99% of my blog posts and my comments to other baby loss moms I use the words "son" or "daughter" or "child" or "baby" etc. I want to recognize and reinforce that I have a daughter, I haven't felt the need yet, and don't know if I ever will, to clarify that she resides in heaven instead of her nursery in my home. Like you, I understand that the term "angel" is broadly used and can be necessary in this community of parents, but It's definitely possible to limit the use of the word or use your own (hope spreads a great message).

  7. Never thought about it like this. Thanks for the insight.

  8. Interesting. I have always thought of Adelyn as being in heaven watching over me - like a guardian angel. I don't suppose she turned into an angel, but rather is just up there trying to protect us. I never thought of angels the way you write. I think I will still think of Adelyn when I see angels, but I really do love the term "hope mommy." We have hope for so many things. Thanks for making me think....