Nife had to live. She had survived the birth, but would she continue to live? I begged God for the life of my child.
I saw a good child when I looked at my child. I saw a Moses or an Abraham; a Sarah or a Deborah. I knew my child had a special role to play in this wonderful world. But would God let my baby girl live? The circumstances surrounding her birth had been overwhelming. I was in and out of the hospital throughout her pregnancy. One day I realized I had not felt her kick for close to 24 hours. The doctors could not hear her heartbeat, either. But just before the 24 hours was up, another ultrasound picked up her pumping heart. Praise God; she was alive. He had answered my prayers. Even so, I feared either she or I would die with the pregnancy. My husband and I prayed earnestly, asking God to spare us.
God used family to save my life and the life of Nife. With their help, my baby and I made it through to birth. But right away, it was apparent that Nife was sick. She had an infection, and I was told she either needed to stay in the hospital for seven days or come in two times every day for antibiotic shots. I was tired of the hospital. After all, I had practically lived there for the previous three months. So, I chose to take Nife home and return with her twice daily, even though neither my husband nor I had a car. Thank God for family; one of my siblings took up the challenge, and twice a day for seven days, we drove about forty minutes to get Nife the needed shots for her survival. And my whole family stayed in continuous prayer for the tiny baby God had given me. Nife made it. By God’s power, she survived. I now see her growing daily and becoming what God created her to be.
1 Samuel 7 tells the story of how God helped the men of Israel as they fought against the Philistines. In verse 12, we read of Samuel setting up a memorial stone which he named “Ebenezer” as he declared, Thus far the Lord has helped us. (NIV) That is how I felt at the time. I still had a child to raise, so my work was far from done, but surely the Lord had heard my prayers and had helped me thus far. Much of God’s help came to me through my family. God created family for love. Family is about loving one another and seeking the good of the next person. God created family so we can have a shoulder to lean on and get help at our deepest moments.
When Nife was about eighteen months old, she fell from my bed and had a swollen place on her head. When the doctor asked for a brain scan, I was scared. I could not go for the scan because of the fear of the unknown. I stayed home and cried out to God, again, for the life of my child. And also, again, I thanked God for my family. My father drove my husband, mother, and Nife for the scan. I was scared and fearful, but my parents were there encouraging me, strengthening me. Nife was their grandchild; they loved her, too, and prayed for her as well. God was gracious to us again, and there was no brain damage of any kind.
Praying for my baby girl was natural for me, and it is also a Biblical instruction. We are instructed to pray for others—our family, friends, acquaintances, and even our enemies. God wants his children to commune with Him in prayer. He is never tired of hearing us. We can talk to Him about anything that burdens us. He cares. Pray with family and take time to pray with friends too. Prayer not only helps the need at hand, but it also builds better relationships. Are you part of a family? The answer to that is yes if you are a believer in Jesus since all believers are part of God’s family. And as a family, we are to lift each other up with the earnestness that I had when my precious baby’s life was at stake.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 puts it well. Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken. (ESV). These verses speak of lifting another up if he or she has fallen. One way to lift others up is through prayer. 1 Timothy 2:1 says this in so many words when it says, …supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people. (ESV)
My Confession: Because of prayer and the love and support of my family, my daughter is alive and well today. Having been the recipient of others’ prayers, I find myself now eagerly seeking opportunities to offer my prayers on behalf of others.
~ Anonymous ~