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Waiting for Emmaline
By Susan Ellison. From: www.lifetoday.org
"They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the Lord to care for them."
(Psalm 112:7, NIV)
I hope you are blessed by this special Mother's Day devotional. It was written by my best friend, Susan Ellison, who is truly the ultimate example of God's sustaining love and grace. She continues to bless me, and many others, with her intimate, listening heart. She continually seeks His direction in her life, even as she faces great challenges.
After conducting extensive tests, the doctor explained why Emmaline had stopped growing in the fifth month of gestation. "There are supposed to be three arteries from the placenta to your baby, but she only has two," he told my son and his wife.
After monitoring the fetal development for several more weeks, he gave a painfully honest prognosis. "She has dropped to a 10% rating in her overall health. We will need to take her by Cesarean when her lungs develop enough. If she survives, she could be facing serious health issues such as heart problems and Down's syndrome."
I was so was proud of the couple's response. They knew God was the answer, but felt desperate for encouragement and prayer from other believers. Bulletins and emails were sent to everyone they knew, creating a network of intercessory prayer for little Emmaline. Waves of compassionate messages came back as we all waited for a miracle.
My husband and I know not to remain self-contained when receiving a bad report. We have been down that path when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and we found greater faith and courage for our journey when we openly invited people to pray for us.
I remember how frightening my cancer diagnosis looked. However, God gave me a supernatural gift of faith even as I started chemotherapy. He showed me some specific things I was to do during treatment. "Laugh everyday," God said. "Write daily in your 'I'm Grateful Journal'."
I bought a stack of wholesome joke books and took them to the clinic when I went for treatments. I ended up reading the jokes aloud to eight frightened women that bonded together in hilarious laughter as we waited for our chemo therapy.
Our hearty laughter lured the nurses, the technicians, and even the radiologist. Each of us got a dose of 'good medicine' before we went in for chemo. We experienced the truth of the proverb, "A cheerful heart is good medicine." (Proverbs 17:22). We were told that scientists believe a healing chemical is released through the body when we laugh.
The daily entries in my journal reflect my love for life and my gratitude for God's blessings. My husband and I rejoice in the simplest things and celebrate life with spiritual and emotional passion.
My cancer-free report finally came with caution. "It could return, Susan," the doctors warned. Our family rejoiced and didn't fear. Second Timothy 1:7 had freed us from that mental bondage. "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."
What our family walked through with my cancer taught us to resist all fear and hope in the Lord as we waited for Emmaline to grow.
One night, I dreamed I held my granddaughter in my arms. I sang Jesus Loves Me as I rocked a perfect baby to sleep. I awoke with vivid recall and confidence that our grand baby would be born healthy. I shared my hope-filled dream with our precious daughter in law. We cried tears of joy.
Suddenly, in the seventh month, Emmaline amazed the doctors. She gained weight and grew rapidly, despite missing an artery.
On Easter Sunday, March 27, 2005, our granddaughter was delivered naturally -a full term baby, weighing 7 lbs and 8 oz. She is perfectly healthy and so beautiful. Our family rejoiced and gave all the glory to our God. Once again, He proved that we can trust Him with every need.
"For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day." (2 Timothy 1:12)
You are going to face trials. It is how you deal with them that matters most. Don't deny God the chance to show you His mystery plan. The thing you fear may be the opening to greater life in Christ.
"Father, I want to keep trusting your love when I face things that I do not understand. I want to take charge of believing you more than I believe in the fear. You are a faithful God."
Thank you, Susan Ellison and Betty Robison, for this wonderful testimony ... 2jesus