The clock was ticking. One joyous hour had passed since my youngest son’s birth. The process had been simpler than last time, and I was gratefully munching on delicious food. While a nurse checked on me, Tim surprised me by asking her, “What is that dripping sound?” The nurse replied casually, “Oh, it’s probably just something in the bathroom.” Nope. It was me.
Suddenly I felt like an actress in a dramatic movie:
- In one corner, my extremely concerned husband was talking with a doctor
- Our room was suddenly filled with people, my hospital bed surrounded by worried nurses
- The anesthesiologist (whom I had expected never to see again) was poised, ready to prepare me for surgery
Someone got down close to me and explained that I may need to have an emergency hysterectomy. I only remember saying, “I don’t want to die.” Praying that I would live to continue to be Tim’s wife and Bugga and Booga’s mommy, they pushed me down the hallway toward surgery. I was lifted onto a table. Then it all went black.
I woke up gasping for breath and shaking uncontrollably. Tim and our pastor were standing next to me. As the symptoms lessened, I was relieved to learn I had only needed a D&C (a surgical procedure to clear out stubborn placenta that was causing me to hemorrhage). My uterus was in tact, but, my blood count was terribly low – less than half of normal.
That evening, when my Dad asked about what I had been through, I was startled by my sharp reply: “I don’t want to talk about it!” My heart had been stretched further than it ever had been before. All I could do was think about my too-close-for-comfort brush with death and thank God for getting me through.
A medical doctor referred me to a local Christian counselor. She was a good listener, kind, and pointed me to God’s sovereignty. Practically she suggested that whenever my thoughts started capsizing, I should immediately stop whatever I’m doing and walk into another room, completely changing my activity. This diversion helped, but I needed something more powerful. I desperately sought the strength of my Counselor.
I cried out to God and asked Him to pull me out of this pit of death. I thought often of Psalm 40 and waited for Him to pull me out of the miry clay and set my feet on a rock and establish my goings. I sensed that God wanted me to be specific in my prayers, so I asked Him to turn my head clock-ward at eleven minutes after anything except nine: 2:11, 5:11, 7:11. And I promised Him that every time I would see an “11” I would say, out loud, “God is faithful! Thank You, God!”
Almost immediately, I kid you not, from that time forward nearly every time I looked at a clock I was rewarded with seeing 2:11, 5:11, 7:11, 12:11, and so forth. For years I had known God’s power through His word and His work in my life. But with this recent gift, I knew the power of God in a very personal way, and I could see the tender warmth of the Son burning off the fog of fear. My toxic thoughts changed to praise and I poured out, “God is faithful! Thank You, God!” It was particularly delightful when He would cause me to look up and see 11:11 – double duty praise and thankfulness!!
After about a year, my health improved and I regained strength. God had never left my side, and He became dearer than ever before.
|With Joshua (2 weeks old) at Pikes Peak State Park|
P.S. This morning (9-11-14) I looked to see what time it was, and the clock read 11:11 – “God is still faithful, thank You, God … God is still faithful, thank You God.”