Thursday, April 21, 2011

Only a Miracle

Today I'm participating with Hearts at Home in sharing about the miracles in our lives. "Hearts at Home seeks to encourage, equip, and educate every mom in every season of motherhood using Christian values to strengthen families." I know I need that encouragement, and many of my readers do, too. I hope the "miracle" I share today will encourage anyone, mom or not.

We had just been in the Asia for about 6 weeks, trying to find housing, learn how to shop, find our way, and get acclimated to our new home. To celebrate Christmas, we took our 6 yr old Jo and 4 yr old Jake to a mountain city, to a small missionary compound with cottages, cooler air, and a grassy field. It was the first time the kids enjoyed running and playing, since our arrival. As parents, it gave us the chance to relax and get much needed rest.

The brown slats were added after the accident.
While we rested a short distance from the field, our 2 children joined a bunch of MK's (missionary kids), on a large swing. It resembled recreational swings with two facing benches and a roof, where people sit across from each other and swing side to side. The group of bigger kids got the large swing, made of heavy wood and steel, moving very fast and high. Our little Jacob was afraid and wanted to get off, but he stood up before the swing could slow down. His small body slipped between the seat and the floor, and he fell through the space, landing onto the concrete slab beneath. The swing continued to move with speed and force over his body, until the swing stopped, and the heavy steel girders of the floor logged in Jacob's turned head, with the group of children still piled on.

When JoHanna appeared at the door, breathless, we knew a crisis was in motion. Arriving at the scene, lying on the ground beside our boy, we knew our lives could be about to change. We could become one of those heartbreaking missionary stories that we hear and grieve. As Jeff and the men worked feverishly to dislodge the swing from Jacob's skull, we could hear his cries. A woman whom I didn't know from another mission came and knelt beside me on the ground, calling out loud a commanding prayer of intercession for Jacob's life. When Jacob fell silent, Jeff shouted that the heavy floor of the swing had to move right then. It was not humanly possible.

With one divine movement, they heaved with all their might, and the Lord lifted the floor of the swing. A nearby doctor pulled Jacob's body from the concrete, and we began our race to the car, through the traffic, to a hospital, and through the long hours ahead. Prayers were sent from dear friends in the country and in the US, and our Jacob's life was spared. The attending doctor said that if his head had not miraculously turned, he would not have survived. It was as if a hand had turned his face in the split second before the swing sped back, pinning him down.

While lying beside our boy on a thin pad over metal coils in the dark, I could hear chanting mixed with the sounds of barking dogs, traffic, and wanderers through the open window.  I never felt so far from everything  familiar, so inadequate as a mother. But God made His presence as bright as the night was dark and as peace giving as the place was fearful. 
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,  if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. 
Psalm 139:7-10

Easter is a reminder that Jesus holds the keys to death, and He has the right and power to hold back the tide of its grip when He chooses. Ultimately, His life insures that death can not overcome us. We were released from the hospital on Christmas Eve, to take our small boy with the heavily bandaged head "home" to a rented cottage in a foreign city.  Without any doubt, we knew our lives had, indeed, changed that day.  We had been part of a miracle, and our hearts were full of praise.

11 COMMENTS ~ Click here to leave a COMMENT:

Mary Joy said...

Oh wow!!!! How scary that must have been and what awe you must have had as you watched God save your son, Jacob! What an amazing God we serve!!! You are an excellent writer, Julie. Have you ever considered writing your experiences into a book/devotional form? I am serious!

Building Home with Him,

Mary Joy

Sara Raby said...

Amazing! Thank you for sharing God's faithfulness with us, I'm sure it's not easy recalling that story. Love that passage from Psalms...just what I needed to read this morning.

Kristi Stephens said...

Thank you for sharing this again, Julie. So thankful we serve a God who hears us and acts on our behalf!

Susan M. Heim said...

How terrified you must have been. I'm so thankful for the angel who turned your son's head!

Pam said...

Oh my! What a miracle...God is good!

Stephanie's Mommy Brain said...

What a gracious God we serve who intervenes in the lives of his children! Thank you for sharing your miracle story. I can only imagine how frightening the experience was for you.

Jeanie Cullip said...

oh how precious our children are, I am so glad my God shared some of his children with us so we can care for them. I love how HIS miracles remind us that He still is there to help us along the way.

How encouraging to know that our God can make anything happen!

a latte of blessings & giggles to you and yours,

Sunny Mcmurry said...

I am speechless. I can't even beging to describe the emotions that raced through me as I read your story. I am so, so thankful that it all ended on a positive note.

Mary said...

Julie, I am in tears reading your post. What a beautiful story of the miracles God performs in our lives. - Mary

Jessica Benzakein said...

Thank you so much for participating in our first HAH Blog Hop. What an amazing story - not just the miracle of life and recovery for your son but the miracle of peace in what had to be a truly terror filled time.

Julie_Sanders said...

So glad to be included in HAH!

Julie Sanders