Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The desire of my heart...

Psalm 37:4
"Take delight in the Lord,and he will give you the desires of your heart."

I always wanted to be a mother. When I found out I was pregnant again (after several miscarriages) I had little faith in this one succeeding. But my husband, who can’t help but believe God’s promises, had enough faith for both of us. A total stranger who was praying for him at a retreat in Atlanta told him that “...the Lord says you’re going to have the desire of your hearts. You’ll have a child of your own.” Joe kept this to himself and waited on God. It wasn’t until that night in the ER that he shared this ‘word’ with me. My gynecologist had just come in to tell me I was pregnant again, but we’d found out early enough that he might be able to help me carry this one to term. With injections of HCG, I might have a baby in September. Without the injections, he said he would keep me comfortable until the pregnancy ended itself...which was what was trying to happen at that moment. He left the room to let us decide what we wanted to do. That’s when Joe told me about the ‘word’ given to him in Atlanta five weeks before. After sharing it with me, he laid hands on me and prayed for our child...that it would stay in my womb until the time it was to come forth. The doctor returned and we told him to start the injections because we wanted to have this baby! Dr. Sherrill started them that very night on January 6, 1985. I was to take the shots until I was ten weeks’ pregnant and stay in bed through the first trimester. During that down-time, I never read so many magazines and books in my life! (I also started watching Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood and Sesame Street!)

Fast forward to the night of September 9, 1985:
I was in labor as Joe and I watched the Dodgers win on television. Then we had praise and worship music playing softly in the background. And then I got the epidural...something I didn’t want...but I had toxemia and my blood pressure had become so high, the doctor ordered it. Late the next morning the music was turned off and I was getting into some serious work! Joe was wonderful as he coached me through all those hours. He only left my side once and that was to get some fresh air and a Diet Coke. And that was when my sweet and dearest friend, Myra, was there to continue the LaMaze coaching.

When Joe stepped out, Myra came to my side and told me when to take a deep, cleansing breath, then find my focal point and breathe rhythmically. We did that together several times, then all of a sudden I became this desperate woman! I grabbed Myra’s shirt, yanked her down to my face and said, “I had to stay in bed to keep this baby and now I need blasting powder to get it out!!! You tell them to get this baby out of me NOW!” This is what our LaMaze coach called ‘transition‘ and I was IN TRANSITION!

In the delivery room, I pushed and pushed, and the baby crowned. But that’s as far as it went. The baby was stuck. Forceps were used. Still stuck. Pretty soon, the baby’s heart rate was getting irregular and obviously in distress. All of a sudden I was having a Caesarian delivery. When the doctor took her from my body at 2:04 p.m. she was hanging limply “...like a rag doll” Joe said.

No one was exclaiming “it’s a girl!!” No one was making a sound. Not even the baby. I kept asking the anesthesiologist about the gender and he quietly whispered that I had a little girl. Two student nurses were standing nearby and I saw tears in their eyes. The drape in front of me wouldn’t let me see much in front of me, but I saw my obstetrician’s face. He was working on me, then glancing over to the side of the room where our baby had been taken. Still no sound.

When I tell you that Joe believes God’s promises, I’m quite serious, because I heard him begin to pray. He got louder. Pretty soon the whole room heard him remind our Mighty God that “...You promised us this baby and I’m not gonna let go now! Satan, you can’t have this one!”

And that is the moment I heard Hannah’s first cry. The atmosphere in the whole room changed. There was rejoicing in that place! Our 8-pound, 6-ounce baby girl was fine! Joe held our miracle for the first time. I was still having surgery, but I got to touch her. She was squinting, pink, and beautiful. She didn’t look anything like Winston Churchill! (up till then, I thought ALL newborn babies looked like Winston Churchill!)

That night, I made a promise to God that whenever I had the chance I was going to tell people what a miraculous thing He did. So now, I’ve told you.

Today, September 10th, is that miracle baby’s 28th birthday. Hannah Elizabeth is in love and married to a wonderful man who loves her dearly. She is an artist, a graphic designer, an amazing woman, a pianist and a singer. She loves Jesus. And that’s the best part...she loves Jesus. I knew God gave us a special girl because there were so many things that might have taken her from us. But He protected her. She’s here. And she’s beautiful inside and out.

Whenever I think about what might have been, I’m thankful God had His hand on her. My daughter...Hannah Beth...is an answer to many, many prayers. And those prayers are still being spoken every day for her. I like to use Jeremiah 29:11-14 now and again as I pray for her. I insert her name. This is something you might want to do for your children, your grandchildren, or someone else you care about...

For I know the plans I have for Hannah,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper her and not to harm her, plans to give her hope and a future. Then Hannah will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to her. She will seek me and find me when she seeks me with all her heart. I will be found by Hannah,” declares the Lord...

Amen and amen.

“If you have a pulse, then you have a purpose. Make your life count!” The woman at the post office window probably has no idea, but she did that today. 


  1. This is a wonderful testament to God's love! You always bring tears to my eyes. Welcome back - I've miss you!

  2. Thank you Beth, for sharing your miracle story. Having just having a new granddaughter, the miracle of birth is fresh for me. Praise the God of miracles. -Rachel