Tomorrow is September 12th, exactly one month before Hope's upcoming heart surgery. Thirty days. Thirty days to fast, to pray, and to "faith" without ceasing. Thirty days to enjoy every little detail about Hope.....her smile, her cuddle, watching her sleep. Thirty days to be a complete family without fear of loss. Thirty days to read scripture and seek answers. Thirty days to sit at the piano with Hope at my side, feet dangling from the piano bench, plunking out "Be Thou My Vision" as we sing together----my voice not so good and her little song coming from her heart but with no words since she cannot speak yet. Thirty days.
I've made a decision I want to share with you. Today, God spoke to my heart and told me to march, so I have decided to march!
God created Hope exactly the way she is; He doesn't make mistakes. He even created her heart to be a total mess. I don't know why, but He did. He is in control of all things, and He could've prevented Hope from having Down Syndrome and a heart defect, but He didn't. Instead, He searched the earth for a family to put her in. And, lovingly, He chose us. What a blessing.
Before the foundation of the world, God knew each day of Hope's little life. He was with her during her stomach surgery when she was only a few days old.....during her first open heart surgery at 3 months of age, during her second open heart surgery when she was only 1, during her eye surgery just a few months ago, and He has already marked His heavenly calendar to be with her on October 12th. The plan is already laid out.....His plans were written and sealed a long time ago.
My choice is this: I can continue to lay around in a big old heap and cry myself absolutely silly OR I can pick myself up and live what I believe. I am choosing the latter. I don't necessarily feel like choosing the latter, but I'm doing it.
In Daniel chapter 10, an angel says to Daniel: “Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom (enemy) resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia”. What I take from this passage of scripture is that God answered Daniel’s prayer immediately, but the enemy went to battle to try to prevent God’s message from getting to Daniel. In my mind, this is where we are. We have gone to the Lord on Hope’s behalf, continue to raise her up to Him, and we are waiting on His response. We are waiting on His plan. I believe the enemy would like to get in the way and bring upon us a spirit of despair. We are not going to let him. We are going to march.
Scripture says: “The prayers of the righteous availeth much”. Please do not hear me say that I believe the prayers of the righteous control God. I understand fully well that God is in control. What I am saying is that prayers bring peace, miracles, and assurance. I am seeking those things from God right now.
So, in advance, I want to thank you for getting on your knees before our Creator on behalf of Hope. I don’t know what God’s plan is for her life…..if it is to save her life, I will march into the battle with hands raised in praise…..if it is to take her on home to be with Him, I will still march into the battle with hands raised in praise. The prize is before us. The prize is living out the Father's plan, knowing His plan is 30 days away and marching toward it with hands raised, accepting His ways and not our own, and loving Him enough to trust Him. The enemy is seeking to destroy our faith, but our family has made up our minds, we are standing upon the Rock and trusting the Lord!
In closing, there is a picture in scripture that I absolutely love, it is found in Exodus chapter 17, and it epitomizes perfect friendship. Picture with me: Moses is on a hill looking down as the Israelites are fighting the Amalekites. As long as Moses’ hands are raised, the Israelites are winning, but when he lowers his hands, the Amalekites begin to win the battle. Moses, after some time, becomes tired…..Aaron and Hur, who are on the hill with him, notice their dear old friend getting tired. So, they get a rock for him to sit on, they stand on either side of him and then they do the most beautiful thing.....they raise Moses' hands for him. The Israelites defeated their enemy that day. On that day, Moses built an altar and called it: “The Lord is my Banner”. He said: “For hands were lifted up to the throne of the Lord”.
In the same way, our family is tired. We have sought the Lord and begged for healing for our little Hope for over 4 years. The enemy would like to sneak in and take us down while we are tired. However, you have chosen to lift up our hands for us through your many heartfelt prayers. And, like the Israelites of old, the victory will be the Lord’s!!!
The 30 day journey begins tomorrow....for 30 days, each evening, our family plans to have a physical march around our home to symbolize our march for little Hope. As we march, we will lift our hands in praise and submission to the Lord. This is our march toward God's plan. Believing Him, Trusting Him, Standing on His Promises, and Receiving His Joy that is promised to come our way in spite of the storm. If He has called us, He has equipped us. You, dear friends, were chosen to be part of the journey. Amazing.