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Monday, February 02, 2009

My Story Monday--From The Beginning

Since this is my story, I thought I would start at the beginning. Although I am an ordinary person, my birth is no ordinary story.

I was born at 30 weeks gestation, ten weeks prematurely...back in 1970 before ultrasounds and sonograms and miracle devices that give preemies a better chance of survival. The doctors suggested that my mother choose between her life and mine in the delivery room. She chose me. The doctors told her it was a miracle that either of us lived. The doctor's last words as he whisked me away to the NICU were, "Pray she's a fighter."
So with a 50% chance of surviving, I fought my way to every breath of air. All day long and all night long as I lay in the incubator, I kicked my feet. Never stopping for six weeks. Kicking and kicking. Doctors say that the motion kept me alive. The constant movement reminded my heart to beat and my lungs to breathe.

Today I know the truth. God was fighting for me.

Why? Because He has a purpose for this ordinary girl. My extraordinary God has called me to use this ordinary life to testify of His goodness.

I was an extraordinary baby that grew into a very ordinary girl with a mom and a dad and a baby brother. I lived in an ordinary house in an ordinary neighborhood. I felt extremely ordinary but there was specialness in that. Security in that. My mom and my dad loved me very much and I was a very happy little girl. I was constantly reminded that although I led an ordinary life, my little life had been anything but ordinary. I had to fight to eat, to walk, to talk, to run and to read. What seemed ordinary was filled with miraculous milestones.

Then one day when I was five, I came home to eat dinner and my daddy wasn't there. He would never sit around our dinner table again. I would see him every other weekend. He would call me, he would celebrate birthdays and holidays with me but when I went to bed at night he would not be the one who tucked me in and he would never be there to protect me again. Even though I had asked Jesus to come live in my heart and help me obey him just months earlier, I began to doubt that he really loved me. I reasoned that if God was real, he would surely bring my daddy home.

That night my daddy left, I cried myself to sleep. It was the first time I remember soaking my pillow with tears wishing for sleep to come and relieve me of the pain and sadness that seemed to hang over my life like a dark cloud. Although I would live my days as if nothing were wrong, under the cover of night, I would shed buckets of tears and pray that God would remove the darkness. Sleep was the only escape from the lingering sadness.

But even in the pain that I experienced as a little girl when my family split, there was a deep knowledge that I would be okay, there was the spirit of a fighter that was stirring in my soul and there was One fighting for me. The Father who would never disappoint. Any time I doubted my destiny, whatever that was, both my mother and my father would remind me of the odds I was capable of overcoming. Then my birth story was retold and I was reminded that I was a fighter.

The beauty of my birth was that any time I doubted God had a purpose somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew the truth. He did. He allowed me to survive entering this world against all odds. Surely there was a reason.

"This reason" would be an alluding purpose, an unasked question floating all around me for many years. I would hear an indistinguishable voice beckoning me in a direction I couldn't quite determine for years. It would take lots of trust, many missteps and tons of failures before the path was clear. Through it all, I never stopped fighting and God never stopped calling.

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand...Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior." (Isaiah 41:10 & 43:1b, 2 &3a)


Melanie said...

This is a beautiful beginning. 'Eagerly waiting for the rest...
I needed to read that scripture today! Thank you for choosing that one.

annie's eyes said...

Beautiful post and picture of His Love for us. He has always had you in His wonderful care. He fights for us. Who doesn't need to hear that often? You and I have a couple of things in common. We'll have to talk about that over coffee when we get together. I was a premie and my dad died when I was a young girl. I know God always had me close to Him too. Nothing ordinary at all! Love, Annette

B His Girl said...

I love it that you realize your story with the Lord started before you were aware of Him. Being a kicker was a good thing. Looking forward to hearing more of you fighting the good fight of faith in your life. b

Bryan and Elise said...

Last week I felt ordinary. I felt boring, unloved, and ordinary. God was speaking to me that it was a lie but it took a friend to come up to me tearfully and say, you are loved and everything but ordinary. Sometimes it takes a little reminder and I loved your reminder today. What a beautiful life you have led with your Savior fighting for you every step of the way.

Abba's Girl said...


So nice to meet you, glad you stopped by my Cover to Cover blog...my primary blog is: www.abbasgril.blogspot.com stop by any time.


Ang baylis said...

Dear Lisa,
You. Are. An. Extraordinary. Girl...And. A. Fighter! God has some big plans for you. You are touching lives all over the country with your beautiful blog! Thank you for sharing this story.
Much love,
Angie xoxo

Joyful said...

Lisa, I too was a preemie - born at 25 weeks in 1962 - and an identical twin. (I share my birth story here: http://princessjoyful.blogspot.com/2008/08/each-day-is-gift.html )

If we are still breathing, God has a special plan still in store for us. So thankful for His Hand on me "from the beginning".


Angie Love said...

So glad you were a fighter and continue to be a fighter. How was precious Palmer's meeting? He was in my prayers today. Worshiping in the car today...some of our favorites...love you.

Chatty Kelly said...

BEAUTIFUL story! God is good.

Lora said...

"My extraordinary God has called me to use this ordinary life to testify of His goodness." Oh, I love this line Lisa. The Bible is full of ordinary people that God does extraordinary things through.
Glory! Don't you know, He's up to something good in your life?!

Blessings dear one, blessings!

Rose Ann Coffey said...

What a beautiful tribute to God. Believe it or not I wrote my story when you were born. It is in my files somewhere. I will send to you. I am so proud of you and know God has even more than we can ever imagine. I love you.

Rachel Kerbel said...

You are amazing. In the midst of this trial, you are still encouraging others of God's love- thank you for representing the Lord in such a mighty way! I pray for you EVERYDAY! sometimes 3-4 times a day. 'If God is for us, who can be against us!' stay strong.

Bernie said...

Oh this is wonderful, just knowing that you knew God as such a young age and through all the adversity you fought and made your way through it. God Bless you sweetie,
Always in my heart and prayers.
........:-) Hugs

Alleluiabelle said...

Sweet Sister,

What a beautiful post...yes you are definitely a fighter. I can see you moving those little legs and kicking those little feet...Now you are marching, you are strong and we are marching along side of you to claim your victory and ours in the complete healing power of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. You are spreading His Word all through this battle and through that alone you have already won.

I love you dear one and continue to pray for you every day.

Big Hugs,

Faye said...

This was beautiful..I needed this today:)

Melody said...

I was feeling so discouraged this morning so I read your blog first thing. It was just what I needed to hear. Thank you! Our God is AMAZING!! And His work in you testifies to HIS AMAZING love and plan for you!!!

Lori said...

I just found your blog and read the story of your beginning. I was born in 1963, at 29 weeks gestation. I weighted 2 lbs and my parents were told there was nothing they could do for me. My mother was afraid to look at me because she thought she'd only see me that one time, and that I would be malformed in some way. She was shocked to see a completely formed baby, only very, very tiny.

I was put in an incumbator with oxygen pouring in to help me breath. Most babies in the same situation that survived were blind because medical science did not understand that the oxygen burned the babies' retinas.

I survived and have my sight!! I, too, was told that I was here for a reason. As a child I thought I would probably be famous for my great acts of heroism. I've learned however, that my purposes are much more quiet and many.

Thanks for sharing. I look forward to reading more of your blog.