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Thursday, September 20, 2007

You Never Know

When I was pregnant with Lily I kept thinking, "If I can just carry her to term, she'll be fine."

In my mind, I thought the only problems that came with giving birth happened if you delivered prematurely. Of course, that was because of our own experience with Melissa and Ann Catherine.

And we were blessed that I carried Lily for nine months and she was born without any problems. But I now know that delivering a baby on-time doesn't guarantee there won't be problems.

Just recently, we've had a few friends who have delivered their babies on time (or just a week or so early) and the babies were born with medical problems. That's so tough when you go nine months thinking everything is just fine, and then you deliver and learn the baby is sick.

After visiting one of those friends in the hospital the other day, I called another one of our friends. I said, "You know what? If your child is breathing, talking, walking and playing - you are so blessed. All the other stuff just doesn't matter."

It's true. We can't predict the future. And we often can't understand why things happen to us.

I know what it's like to sit by your child's bedside in the hospital and silently pray - no beg - them to fight. I know what it's like to feel all alone, as if God has left you and doesn't care that you are drowning here on Earth.

But I also know how it feels to look back on that experience and realize that God was there all the time, holding your baby in the palm of his hand, even if you didn't feel him.

When your child is sick, all you have is your faith. It's the scariest, most vulnerable feeling in the world.

So if your children are healthy, wrap your arms around them and tell them how much you love them. And then pray for those babies who aren't. And their parents.

They need those prayers more than you know.

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