Oh Ye of Little Faith… When God says “Yes”

I don’t even know where to begin.

This past Friday morning the contractions began and the day we have been anticipating  with much fear and trepidation and hope and excitement was finally upon us.  Phoebe was going to be born.

BORN. As in ALIVE!

31 weeks ago we were given pretty bad news: “Your daughter has a cystic hygroma. Those are often associated with something called “Turner Syndrome”.  99% of girls with Turner Syndrome do not make it to term. I am so sorry.”

We were numb. Ninety-nine percent don’t make it. Some of that is because of the chromosomal abnormality and some of that is because, when given those statistics, many families choose to end the pregnancy, but it doesn’t appear that the statistics differentiate between the two.

My body threatened to lose her many, many times over the course of the next 3 months.  And for the months following we were given good news (“The omphalocele has resolved! Her hygroma is gone!”) and bad news (“She has congenital heart disease… open heart surgery after birth… a month or more in the hospital…”).

And through all of it we prayed.

We prayed and prayed and prayed, as did many of you.

We prayed for healing.  We prayed that God would be merciful and spare Phoebe pain.  We prayed that she would not need surgery.  And we kept praying.

Up until 2 days before the birth at the final ultrasound the main concern was her heart.  I think we had grown comfortable, if one can say that, with the idea that within hours after her birth, Phoebe would be transported to Children’s Hospital and we would begin the long, long journey of life in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.  I had come to accept that the last week of summer I would spend in the hospital with our newborn, by her side as she lay in a special little crib with wires attached to her body, tubes coming from her nose and stitches going down the front of her chest instead of helping my other children get ready for the first day of school.

I knew I had prayed and prayed and prayed and had entrusted God with Phoebe’s life and the outcome of the pregnancy and birth and what happened afterward, but to be honest?…

I didn’t think He’d let her get better.

I have seen so much heartache among dear friends and so much hardship in the world that I had come to believe that as a Christian I am supposed to present God with my cares and troubles and heart concerns, but that the outcome will likely be bad.

Don’t get me wrong, I have full faith that God is good.  I am confident that He loves us in a way that is so powerful that it’s incomprehensible to our finite minds, but I have grown more comfortable with the understanding that, as a follower of Christ I will constantly be undergoing the refining process, which is often painful.  Joys happen, yes, but they’re to keep us moving forward toward the finish line, not a gift of love from the King of Kings.

I. WAS. WRONG.

God hears our prayers.  Every single one.  And He knows what is better for us than we do, which is why sometimes He says “no”. Those “no’s” stink.  I don’t like being told “NO.”  And it seems like He says it a lot.

He doesn’t say “No” to be mean or because He doesn’t love us. Quite the opposite, really. He loves us so much that He won’t give us everything we want because what we desire is not His best for us.  If we could see our lives from His perspective and see His plan, His BEST for us, we would agree with Him.

But we can’t see our lives from His view so we often feel grossly disappointed, even HURT that “He doesn’t seem to love me” because we didn’t get what we want.

Going into this delivery of Phoebe I was expecting to be grossly disappointed.

As I labored so hard, my heart was troubled about what was to come.  I was afraid. I knew I’d get to hold her for a few minutes, but after that she’d be whisked away and I’d not get to hold her again… potentially for weeks.  I wanted her out, but wanted her inside just the same because I knew I was still holding her then, and we were connected as a mama and her baby should be.

Then I heard her scream a cry that said, “I’m here!  I’M HERE!!”  A scream that identified life; a beautiful, unexpected, highly anticipated life.

And I began to weep.

Never in the births of my previous 5 children did I cry when they were born.  Not because I didn’t love them like crazy, but because I was so happy.  I didn’t realize how great the fear of loss could be until Phoebe.  I didn’t realize how fragile life was until we were told time and time again that our girl simply didn’t stand a chance… so I wept because… GOD.

He knew.

He knew what He was doing before even putting Phoebe in my womb.

He knew our fears and our doubts and our hopes.

He knew our hopes for healing and my faith-lacking belief that it would happen just as the doctors had said.

Last July I was just starting this blog and wrote a post here here about what it’s like to follow God when He asks you to do something terrifying.

He never, ever asks us to begin a journey that He will not accompany us on and walk us through.

When Jesus asked Peter to climb out of the boat and join him on the water (Matthew 14), Peter did it willingly.  Then he saw the waves and the wind and the stormy seas around him and he began to panic and freak out, taking his eyes off the One who called Him to the task in the first place; the ONE who could bring him through it. And he began to sink.

“Immediately Jesus reached out His hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” He said, “why did you doubt? -Matthew 14:31

Just call me “Peter”.

Why did I doubt?

This is God We’re talking about here!  He has brought our family on a journey. He has promised that He will never leave us or turn His back on us. Our job is to keep our eyes fixed, unmoved by the wind and waves and storms around us, on HIM who is immoveable and unshakeable.

“Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible. With God ALL things are possible.” -Matthew 19:36

Let’s encourage one another with that, okay?  NOTHING is impossible with God.

And friends? Let’s keep praying for one another because “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” -James 5:16

Phoebe is evidence of that.  Thank you for your fervent, faithful prayers!  God heard and He said, “YES!”

MommyandPhoebe

No tubes, no meds, ALL AWESOME!!!

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20 thoughts on “Oh Ye of Little Faith… When God says “Yes”

  1. OMEGA says:

    GOD IS. IF THERE EVER WERE ANY DOUBTS, GOD IS!!!!!!!! HE WAS, AND IS, AND IS TO COME. I ACKNOWLEDGE PUBLICLY HIS GREATNESS. HE HAS ALWAYS BEEN GREAT BUT CIRCUMSTANCES LIKE PHOEBE’S JUST REALLY, REALLY HELP THOS OF US OF LITTLE FAITH, TO BE PROPERLY REMINDED. THANK YOU, GOD! THANK YOU SUMMER FOR SHARING YOUR JOURNEY!! I HAVE GAINED SO MUCH ENCOURAGEMENT FROM PHOEBE’S STORY, YOUR STORY, YOU’RE FAMILY’S STORY.. REALLY FROM GOD’S STORY. YAY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Summer Wilson says:

      Omega, I am right there with you. We are overwhelmed by Him and so thankful. It’s funny how we can think we’re all full of faith until a bump in the road comes that causes us to doubt. And yet He is still there. He is STILL faithful. He never promised healing, and she still has some heart issues, but they’re not nearly as big as expected. What He did promise was that He’d be right here with us. Hallelujah!

      Like

  2. prayingformyrainbow says:

    Summer,
    I am crying here at 4 am. Tears of joy that you and Phoebe are here, and at how things have turned out. I prayed for you both with all of my heart, and I have to admit that I never thought the outcome would be different because of it. When you told me the news 9 months ago I was sure you were going to lose her, and join this heartbreaking club that I’m in that no one wants to join when they lose a child. I’m so happy for you. And yet I cried when I read the section about God telling us “no”. I don’t know why I was told “no” with Anneliese. I can see possible pieces of the puzzle as to why, but I can’t see the big picture. God asked me to start the journey I’m on now with Joshua, and I took the leap of faith, but yet I’m so fearful. I am scared that the outcome will be the same, that there is more heartbreak for me. You have reminded me that I need to keep my eyes on Jesus, so that I don’t sink.
    Thank you friend.
    Joshua 1:9

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Summer Wilson says:

    Oh Cindy, I thought of you and a handful of other dear friends as I wrote this who God asked to walk the journey of loss. My heart aches with you all. Please know that I do not think one road is better or worse than another. He has this custom-tailoring plan for each of us and I don’t understand it at all. But I know with all my heart that when each of you lost your beloved child, He wept. He knows the pain that causes, as He lost His own Son for a time. But, like with Jesus, death is temporary. In this you can have confidence. You will see Anneliese again, as will the other mommies and daddies who’ve been in the club of infant and child loss. Please be encouraged that this world is temporary, but God is eternal, as are we. Focus on the eternal, where we finish the race and He says “well done”. ❤ to you, dear friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Erika Mitchell says:

    Oh yay! Oh yay oh yay oh yay!!!!!!!! You know, I’ve seen a handful of things that could maybe be considered miracles, but this is the first miracle I’ve ever been certain of. I’m so, so glad for your miraculous daughter.

    You nailed it right on when you wrote about expecting bad news. I feel that way too. Thank you for letting us rejoice with you! Phoebe looks smooshy and cuddly, precisely the way she should!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Debbie says:

    Beautiful. Thank you for sharing this about our God and how all things are possible for Him. And how He loves us like His children, and He helps us learn to trust Him. I believe; help Thou my unbelief. So glad He’s patient and is making us more like Christ. Thankful with you for the blessing of your Phoebe. ~Debbie

    Like

  6. Caryn Ruud says:

    Summer, my heart is just bursting with happiness for you right now. What a gift! All of God’s blessings to you and your family, and sweet little Phoebe. And by the way, you’re a fabulous writer – love your blog!

    Like

  7. Annette Hoelscher says:

    Wow! God is awesome! Congratulations!!! I just heard your testimony at the children’s worker volunteer banquet at Northshore last June, and now I get to hear to the happy result! Praise God! Now, I’m the one who needs prayer. I just had a cancerous brain tumor removed, and my lung cancer from 2013 is flared back up. I am going to have brain radiation therapy, and then chemo as further treatment. My prayer is that my life would glorify God through every step of this process, and that many would come to the Savior. I would really appreciate your prayers. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Summer Wilson says:

      We’ve been praying for you Annette. Heard the news and will keep lifting you up before our Jehovah Rapha, God our healer! You already radiate the power and love of Christ in all you do and we will continue to ask that God give you strength and steadfastness during this part of your life’s race.

      Like

  8. ohcripe says:

    Summer! …What?!? I’m shaking my head as I try to decide what letters to type here. I am just so flippin happy!! I prayed for your peace, for strength, and yes, I asked humbly for a miracle. That was just for good measure, I think. Like a vote, or in case God was keeping a tally. I knew He could heal Phoebe but did I think he would? I think mostly I just protected my heart for if He didn’t, asking Him to strengthen yours for the refining journey of faith. Summer, he healed Phoebe’s heart! He did it! I know her little heart still needs prayer and you will still need strength as you care for her. But, wow – God hears our prayers and so I will continue to pray. Warm hugs, friend and kisses for Phoebe. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Shirley Miller says:

    Praise God, Summer, Phoebe and family! Once again,in our humanness, we limit the power and love of God and He shows us, once again, that He is in charge and that His love for us is limitless! May He continue to bless Phoebe, and to heal her ailments. He has special plans for Phoebe’s life and all of you are a wonderful and joyous part of it! I know that your faith will allow you to enjoy the journey always knowing that He is with all of you! Thank you for sharing your testimony and Phoebe’s story with us. I prayed to Mary, the mother of Jesus to be with you throughout this pregnancy. I trust and firmly believe that through her intercession, your family has been blessed with the miracle of Phoebe! Hugs to all of you! xxoxoxoxoxxoo

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Katrina Meiusi says:

    So wonderful to see you at church today. Laying eyes on Phoebe just brought spontaneous tears. She is beautiful A modern day miracle. I called my daughter Molly (who taught Sunday School with us last year) who is in AZ to tell her the good news. “Together” over the phone we read your blog together. So thrilled!! So thankful!!

    Liked by 1 person

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