I know that in the babyloss community, it is common to speak of our babies as angels, even as guardian angels, and of ourselves as mommies or daddies of an angel. Books and pictures and popular culture support it, and there is something cute and cherubic and comforting about the idea of our child staying close by and even watching over us. But is it true? And how can we talk about this with our living children so they have a sound, biblical understanding of life after death?
Is this just a matter of semantics? Am I taking away a sense of comfort by saying that if you have a child in Heaven you are not the parent of an angel? I hope not, because the truth is always the best source of comfort, and if our babies are not angels, it opens the door for the question, both in our own minds and with our living children, of what they are experiencing and doing in Heaven. (Another excellent book for looking at this in-depth is Heaven, by Randy Alcorn.)
I will leave you with this thought. In his first epistle, the apostle Peter spoke of salvation as something the prophets had tried to understand and the Holy Spirit had finally revealed, but also as something the angels longed to look into (1 Peter 1:12). Angels worship God, care for us, and rejoice when we are saved - but there is something about salvation that they are not privileged to understand. The human race alone is able to experience this, thanks to the grace of God and the death and resurrection of Jesus. Our babies in Heaven, like others who have gone before them, are in a greater position than the angels in terms of experiencing God's saving grace and knowing and worshiping Him from that position. That is amazing! And it is vitally important that when we talk about our babies' existence in Heaven, especially with our living children who are still growing in their faith, that we do so in a way that fully expresses truth about the life that awaits us there, that it may stir up excitement and curiosity in their hearts about how they can be assured of that life as well.