This last weekend my third son was born (05.03.2012). Gabriel was brought into the world a week earlier than scheduled. He came early because my wife had complications. We praise God because we have been aware of the complications since January and he allowed Kyla to carry Gabriel to week 36 day 6. We also rejoice concerning the complication because it could have been worse and forced other follow up surgical procedures for Kyla.
Thursday morning, after recovery, everyone thought Kyla was out of the woods and needed rest. I was released to get coffee and breakfast. When I came back, there were 30 nurses in Kyla’s room. He blood pressure dropped due to loss of blood. An emergency response team was called out just in case. Her doctor and nurses were able to catch her and bring her blood pressure back up without her flat-lining.
But as the husband standing in the room a lot of potentials fly through your head. Not knowing what is going on and what is ahead of your wife is trying. It’s hard to look at your best friend and realize there is nothing you can do for her but pray and trust the medical team because they have the knowledge and skill necessary to help her.
Kyla recovered in ICU the following two days while Gabriel recovers in NICU. The Lord was certainly gracious and kind to restore and preserve both of them!
Later one nurse said to me, “You were so calm. We all figured you either did not know what was really going on or you have great faith.”
I am not the hero in this story. But I KNOW my Lord!!!! There are things I know about Him that helped me remain calm, praise Him, and serve my wife during the trial. We, who love Jesus, need to have our theology straight before we go through trials!!! Here are four principles I used for enduring this trial.
1. Make sure you’re theology is right before the trial. I do not read my Bible solely for the purpose of enduring trials. I do not read and study solely to equip myself for when others endure trials either. The Bible is not solely a trial manual. I read my Bible to know my Lord and Savior better!!! The heavens declare the glory of God and the Scriptures reveal Him to me with concrete language! I follow Him and read about Him because I love Him!!!! I learn about Him because I rest on Him. What I know about Him provides the foundation for how I view and live life! When a trial comes and life seems to be spinning around you, you will cling to what you know. If you only partially understand God’s sovereignty, you will barely cling to it when you need to know it. Pastors are told, if you vaguely understand something and preach what you vaguely understand, it will be a mist in the pulpit and a fog in the pew. You have to have convictions about the truth before you need to rely on those truths. Lack of convictions will be evident during trials. While life is spinning, you will be spinning too like a ship without a rudder. Theology (the study of God) needs to be concrete and real to you before you “need” it.
Kyla and Gabriel were in two different buildings. This makes it harder for dad/husband to be in the same place. Nurses asked how I was handling two family members in two places both enduring trials. It’s easy, you sit by your wife’s side. She is your bride, the husband wife relationship is more important than any other relationship on earth. I love Gabe, but I love my wife more! Knowing what God says about relationships and how I am to prioritize them comforted me because I knew how to act!
2. Cling to what is true. This principle builds off the first one. If you do not have good convictions, you will have less to cling too. While Kyla was surrounded by 30 nurses, working like ants to help her, there was too much going on to follow all the work. I knew three things that helped me stay calm. a) Kyla is in the Lord’s hands. Who better for me to trust and rest assured in. b) I knew being nervous, wigging out, and going nuts would not help Kyla or the medical staff. c) I know I need to gather data.
This last one is important. My mind does best clinging to truth. I have to make sure I know the truth. Gathering data helps the mind. I listened intently to the doctor. In the climax of chaos I learned the new IV was helping Kyla’s blood pressure raise. This is the truth I clung too. Everything else at the moment was speculation. What was really going on was her blood pressure was heading back to normal. She wasn’t out off the woods, but knowing this helped.
Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith!
Along with gathering data about the situation, we must fix our eyes on Jesus. The doctor had potential plans we did not like. But, we had to be patient and wait on results to see what would happen. A person is faced with two choices: focus on potential or focus on reality. The reality of the situation is Kyla is in the Lord’s hands and there is no better place for her. I need to be there too focusing on the Lord and trusting in Jesus my great High Priest! He saved us, He sustains us, and He lavishes us with love and mercy. It’s amazing, in the heat of battle, God’s grace was so clearly seen and it comforted us! Knowing Jesus understood what we were going through and was there with us helped during battle.
3. Allow the church to serve you. We are the most blessed family in our church because those in our life are awesome! We are soooo grateful for them, their love for us, and how they served us! Everyone offered to help. We let them. It was such a blessing to have them available, praying for us, bringing food, coffee, and fellowship to the hospital. They ministered to us and we are thankful for them. During quiet times when Kyla was sleeping my mind wanted to race. Those times were filled with conversations and updates with fellow believers. Their time ministered to me and helped me remain focused on the goal! God uses His church to minister to His people. Let them do what God planned and designed the church to do!
4. God is sovereign and gracious. This is of course what many of us think about when we think of trials. What a joy to know during trials the Lord is in control. I do not want my baby in NICU. No one does. I do want my wife to recover. I’m not sure what life would have looked like had we had the baby by our side the entire time. Kyla could not physically take care of the baby for a few days. My focus needed to be directed toward Kyla. What a blessing it turned out to be that he was in NICU, being treated and taken care of by others while Kyla recovered!!! Not how we wanted it, but definitely thankful for how it turned out.
Gabe and Kyla are doing better. Hopefully he will be with us soon. All data indicates he is growing and strengthening and will be with us sooner than later. The Lord knows and we trust Him! We continue to fix our eyes on Him knowing He is our God and greatest treasure we posses!
Update (5/20/2012): Both mother and baby are home. We’re a full family of five adjusting to life in a zone defense outnumbered by our boys! Thank you to each of you for your encouragement and prayers. It was cool to know people around the world were praying for us. We love you and cannot thank you enough for your encouragement!