The Little Potted Plant wants to officially announce the birth of our fifth grandchild and third granddaughter, Kennedy Marie Hyatt, born August 26th. She is perfect in every way, all eight pounds, four ounces of her. I think she will be a redhead like her mom and Granny Alice. I hope so.
I once again had the privilege of being present when a new grandchild is born, witnessing this holy miracle of life. And once again, I’m mindful that all the days God ordained for Kennedy have already been written in His book before the first one came to pass (Psalm 139). My daughter-in-law’s pregnancy had some rough spots, but God once again proved his faithfulness.
Jennifer and Steven had discovered they would have a baby girl on a routine ultrasound in their doctor’s office. Later they were sent to the med center in Little Rock for some genetic testing–no worrisome signs were present at all. It was just for information and preparation if there should be a problem. The first blood test came back as a healthy baby boy. What? They had clearly seen a baby girl now on more than one ultrasound. The test was supposed to be 99% accurate, so it had to be wrong. Frantic internet searches were done by family members as the medical community just seemed, well, puzzled.
So the decision was made to repeat the tests. Ultrasound still perfect, and this time the blood test did say baby girl, but with borderline Down’s Syndrome. What did that mean? Medical professionals didn’t know. The test was too new to put a percentage on it. The only sure way to know was amniocentesis. They asked themselves if that was necessary. They of course would be having the baby no matter what. Still, it would be good to know ahead of time, or would it? They decided to schedule the amnio at the med center, but not until Jen was far enough along that the baby would be okay if the procedure put her into labor.
It was the 5th of July when I accompanied them to the med center. They were still unsure whether they would have the procedure, but they wanted to do all they could. More ultrasounds. Perfect little girl; no sign of Down’s. Do they do the amnio to make absolutely, positively sure? The specialist decided for them. It was too dangerous based on the position of the baby, and besides, why take any risk when the ultrasounds looked so good? Jen cried with relief because she didn’t really want to have the procedure anyway.
Much prayer was offered up to the Lord by many faithful friends and family members. We all chose to believe this child would be healthy. But even more so, we all believed that God knew what He was doing, and this child would be a blessing no matter what. My son and daughter-in-law have great faith, and it has been a joy to witness their faith expressed through the many trials they have endured, including the devastating miscarriage with their first pregnancy and a health scare with their firstborn Lane that proved to be nothing.
Jennifer and Steven chose to believe that God is a healer and was protecting their baby. It was both encouraging and humbling to see them, having all the normal concerns of an expectant couple plus the heightened anxiety of the test results, choosing to believe that God is good, that He had a purpose and a plan for them and Kennedy, and they would accept His will, no matter what. But God chose to let this cup pass from them.
Our lives are not random. The Word tells us in Acts 17 that the time in history and place where we would live is divinely appointed. God has a purpose for each of our lives in the generation to which he has called us. There will be times in our lives when the cup of suffering will not pass, but we must remember for those who belong to Christ, it will be necessary to fulfill our purpose in our generation. And according to James 1, these trials are for our good, to mature our faith. Enduring them while continuing to praise God brings Him much glory.
Little Kennedy has joined big brother Lane and made the Hyatts a family of four. If she had had Down’s, I have no doubt the blessings would have outweighed the challenges. Our hearts are broken for those we see drinking the cup, like a friend’s daughter and son-in-law who lost their son at eight months’ pregnant, or the family that lost their 12-year-old son a year ago while playing in the rain. We “weep with those who weep,” but when it’s time to rejoice, we do so with our whole hearts. Either way, we trust. We endure. We hope. For He is good.