Wednesday night. It’s February 1st — 2/1/12 (cool number date!). Tomorrow is Lee Anne’s birthday — how in the world has it been 25 years since she was born? First point: birth is such an amazing miracle! A new life, with all the wonder and promise and hope of that precious life. When the grandparents-to-be tell the parents-to-be that their lives will never be the same, that is just a huge understatement.
When Lee Anne came into this world, she was an early one — 6 weeks premature. Her due date was March 13th. It was going to be a first in our immediate family to have a March birthday: at that time, we had February birthdays, summer birthdays, but none in March. However, towards the end of January it became clear to my doctor that blood pressure problems had suddenly surfaced and would probably rearrange that schedule. As it turned out, a few days later he had to induce labor to deliver the baby in order to deal with my skyrocketing blood pressure. Don’t know why it happened but it did — my doctor explained that it was a known complication with an unknown cause. And, in this particular case, it was one of those worst-case-scenarios. Even after the birth when we should have both been out of the danger zone, I proceeded to have excessive bleeding complications. The experience is still so clear: I had the absolute knowledge of being present with the Lord, praising Him and thanking Him for my life. I can’t explain exactly, but there was no desire to cling to this life — more a feeling of wonder and gratefulness, and there was no fear, just a confirmation of God’s goodness — His goodness in ALL things.
Even though we may not see “good” from our vantage point, that doesn’t mean that there is no good inherent in a situation or circumstance. Even when the turn-of-events goes the “wrong” way, good can come shining through in unexpected ways. It may take a while, but walking hand-in-hand with the Lord means we can trust that His purpose will prevail.
So many miracles became evident as the days wore on. Like the revelation of how God causes a mother’s body to provide extra-rich milk when there is a premature birth. Like the fact that “Baby Girl” and I were both ready to leave the hospital, about two weeks later, on the same day. Like the fact that there were/are medicines to control blood pressure, and even if they must be taken every day for the rest of my life, I’m so thankful for them! Yes, we actually left the hospital without a name for our new beloved baby girl, but we soon agreed upon a name. However, since we had already left the hospital, we had to sign an official name form, get it notarized, and send it in to a specific State of GA office. For future reference, it’s much easier to name a baby before leaving the hospital!
There were two adorable and adoring big brothers awaiting the new baby when we got home that day. They had to adjust to a mom who was out of commission for quite a while, but time passed and soon our lives were back on track. We just never know what’s ahead — over time, trusting in Christ has become the one essential in order to keep on going forward with hope and purpose.
Just today I visited a friend in the hospital who had to have surgery for a broken hip from an accident with her dog, of all things. We just can’t see these things coming! She exhibited such a positive attitude, portraying her depth of faith that God would help her through this trial, just as He has with other trials in her life before this. As I left the hospital, I thought, “Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to hit the rewind button and undo the accident before it ever happened?” Do you ever think, “Could I just have a ‘redo’ and avoid the very thing that was a mistake?” While we can’t undo life as it unfolds — we can’t anticipate the consequences from certain actions that we or others take or thwart accidents before they happen — we can choose to look upward towards our heavenly father who loves us and causes all things to work together for good, for those who love Him. And that’s when, if we are paying attention, we start noticing the miracles!
Excerpts from Romans 8 (The Message): Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them — living and breathing God! Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God … that person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn’t pleased at being ignored. But if God himself has taken up residence in your life, you can hardly be thinking more of yourself than of him. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good. So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? I’m absolutely convinced that nothing — nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable — absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.