Wednesday, April 2, 2008

This is something I wrote one day. I decided to share it with you, too, I guess! =) Enjoy!
“The tissue is not viable,” the doctor apologized over the phone. I was standing in a hospital ultrasound room with my husband and two children. From the distressed look on the face of the young technician as she performed the ultrasound, I had expected as much. My eyes filled with tears and the thought pounded in my head, “My baby is dead.” Unchecked tears rolled down my cheeks as I walked numbly out of the hospital and rode home. My arms ached to hold my baby, I was sure a boy, who lived a short two months in my womb. He was too tiny for me to have known in any way, but I had loved him from the moment I knew he was growing inside of me. He was mine, and I wanted him. “Hold him for me, Jesus” I prayed over and over.
I struggled with God - not so much over the question, “Why?” as over the question, “How can I have faith in God’s love and goodness towards me when He tears precious things from my life?”
Seven months later, I was pregnant again. This time I was full of fear. I made it past the nine week mark and relaxed a little. I pestered the doctor to order an ultrasound, saw that everything looked ok and relaxed a little more. Every time our tiny girl kicked me and hiccupped, I relaxed a little more.
But, I wasn’t trusting God. I was trusting medical science and my own experience. I was still unsure of God. After all, I reasoned, He gives and takes away. Who’s to know what He’ll choose to do this time.
Our daughter arrived six days past her due date and perfect. I breathed a sigh of relief and thanked God for His abundant blessing. I spent hours holding her, marveling at her perfectly formed fingers and toes and her beautiful face. We named her Julia Faith . Something tickled at the back of my mind. Faith? Do I really have Faith? Faith in the God who gave this precious life to me for a time?
Ten days after her birth, I rushed Julia back to the hospital, in tears as I drove. My infant spiked a 102.9 degree fever. Her shiny eyes and the distressed way her mouth moved convinced me that something was seriously wrong. “Blessed be the name of the Lord” by Tree 63 played on the radio as I drove:
He gives and takes away
He gives and takes away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be your name!

Following that song, Mercy Me sang “God With Us” repeating,
Such a tiny offering compared to Calvary.
Nevertheless I lay it at your feet

“Can I really lay my tiny baby at the feet of Jesus not knowing whether He will choose to give or take away?” I asked myself.
At the hospital, the quick reaction of the Emergency Room doctors increased my fear. Before I knew it I was signing papers for a spinal tap. Nurses were hovering around Julia drawing blood and inserting an IV. One nurse repeatedly told me that Julia had the symptoms of meningitis and gave statistics on how quickly infants die of that disease.
I was all alone with my baby who could be dying, and Jesus gently asked, “Do you truly trust me with the things that are most precious to you?” After months of struggling, God answered me. I finally got it. Jesus loves me. He will work all things out for my good in the end. But He also wants me to trust Him fully, not knowing whether the outcome will bring heartbreak or rejoicing. After all, trust isn’t really trust if I know the outcome will bring my version of good. So there in the hospital, I gave my precious baby to Jesus to do with as He willed. My only hope and all my faith was in Him alone.
It’s not a new truth about God that no theologian has ever expressed before. I would have agreed with these truths on any day of my life - intellectually at least. But now I know it to be true in my experience, in the scary, heartbreaking moments of life. When I say Julia‘s name, I’m reminded that my faith is placed in the only One who is worthy to be relied on - my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Julia Faith is His little girl, and I now trust more fully in His love for her and me.