The journey started sometime in Nov of 1999. By December, I was wondering if this was such a good idea. Every day started with Karen throwing up. I hate people throwing up. Makes me need to do the same thing… and this went on day after day… for months…
Then there was the strange problem of taste changes. Going through Southern, our most favorite thing to do on Saturday night was to go to taco bell and get a bean burrito. We made it into a sacred tradition. Suddenly Karen couldn’t stand the smell, much less the taste of a beanie. Breaking tradition is almost like the unpardonable sin. This was the 11th commandment. Now suddenly they are out all because of this nameless, unseen being…
Each day seemed to bring new and different feelings. Some times we were on cloud 9, if there was a floor we were walking on we didn’t feel it. Other days… well… lets just say the Lord gave us strength to make it through, one day at a time.
But all along the way, we knew there was a little miracle growing. We couldn’t see him yet, although we had plenty of evidence that he was real. The day of the ultrasound was one of those cloud 9 days. We were staring at the screen, looking at black and white static like we had some clue what we were looking at. The nurse kept saying this was an arm, there, see his feet, and yep, he’s a boy. The whole time I’m thinking that she was on drugs… this lady was seeing things no one else in the room saw…
Karen kept fussing about growing larger, and sleep was getting harder and harder to come by. Then there was this bad habit the yet unnamed child was fond of. Dancing on Mommies bladder. More proof he was in there… but still, we could not see him, or touch him, we just saw evidence that he was there… and we had faith in what others told us was happening. There were books telling us how everything should be, and doctors who were leading us every step of the way. Advice was coming from everyone, telling us what we should be doing to have a happy/healthy boy. Still, we had to go day by day on faith. We had never done this before, but we saw enough evidence to know he was real even if we had never seen him.
Then one day, the 12th of July, I’m down near bass memorial academy working on some local church books. At this point, the still unnamed child is at least 30 days away so I’m pretty sure I still had time… just one more little trip before I had to stay home and be ready for the big day. It’s about 9 pm at night, I’m driving blissfully along hwy 80 headed home and just got to Demopolis Alabama. Cell phone coverage back then was spotty to say the least along hwy 80, and it kind of startled me to hear my phone ring. I answer only to hear, “my water is broke and I’m going to drive myself to the hospital!” I think to myself… This can’t be! This isn’t the time, I still have 30 days yet. I’m not ready!
I tell Karen to call the Doc, and I call Fred Rimer, our next door neighbor. He and Joyce had just got back that day about 3pm from vacation and the last thing he expected to have to do was drive a lady in the process of having a baby 20 miles to the hospital! The hospital was about ½ a mile from the office and the all time speed record for the shortest time to the office was set that day by Fred. Praise the Lord, they arrived safe… I don’t know who was the most excited.
I arrived at Baptist east about 11pm, and for the next 7 hours I have never prayed so hard for something to be over. Karen was going to do this natural, i.e. drug free. I thought they should give me some… but I digress. The pain was pretty intense. About 6:18 on july 13, for the first time we could actually see, and hear, and hold what we knew was coming the for the last 8 months, but had never actually seen, or heard or held. We had lived by faith, believing it was true, looking forward to that day. To hold that little, 4 pound 15 ounce, tiny, perfectly formed miracle of God, made it all worth it.
That calls to mind a warning from Jesus:“Jesus answered: ‘Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, “I am the Messiah,” and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:4-14, NIV).
God has told us what to expect, and he continually gives us glimpse of proof that He is real. The answer to Gideon’s complaint, ” If the Lord is with us, why has all this happened….? And where are all the miracles our ancestors told us about? “
They are all around us. In our everyday lives, miracles happen even today. All we have to do is reflect on what HE has and is doing. But I don’t think we should stop there. I think we need to believe what he has told us, living our lives knowing it’s true, and take the time to thank Him for being a God who cares enough to show us miracles…even today.