Today is a special day

I posted this on Facebook also:

Does God actually speak to us? And, if so, how? Depending on whom you ask, the answers vary widely. But this is what I know…

It was July 9, 1986. A very ordinary day. The only reason that I know the date is because I wrote a note on an index card, which I saved and have in front of me right now. I remember that it was about mid-morning, and I was washing dishes. Our oldest son was almost 11 months old.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, I had this crazy, overwhelming thought, kind of a mental picture, and I couldn’t get it out of my head. It made no sense, yet was so strong and persistent that I felt compelled to run part of it by my husband and then write it down…just in case I would someday want to remember.

Here is part of what I jotted down: “Thought of name ‘Isaac Lawrence’ for next son…For some reason I feel strongly about the name.” I wrote that I thought he would be “born at home, and welcomed at birth with much joy and laughter.”

That last part seemed especially crazy. Matthew had been born by c-section. A home birth, at the time, seemed out of the question.

I also wrote about this “Isaac Lawrence Prewett”, who I was convinced would be our second son: “I long for him. Perhaps God has given me this desire that I might begin praying for him now.”

Our next child was our sweet Miriam, born by c-section after an attempted home birth. By the time I was pregnant after that, I thought I had the baby-gender-guessing thing down pat and was so convinced that I was carrying a girl that I almost didn’t bother getting out any non-girly clothes for the baby.

It was March 19, 1990, one of the most amazing, memorable days of my life. I took one look at my new son, just born in our living room, and laughed as if the most hilarious practical joke had been played on me. In that moment, I remembered…and I knew.

“This is Isaac!” I announced joyfully to my husband, who had no idea what I was talking about. And then…well, things suddenly got dramatic. The son I recognized as the one God had promised me had to be rushed to the hospital and, later that night, I wondered if his name held a more bitter meaning: was God asking me to give back my Isaac? Was his name less about laughter and more about sacrifice?

Our Isaac survived. In fact, he thrived. He’s our “miracle baby”, grown into a strong, intelligent, handsome man. Today I celebrate the birth of a wonderful son, the fulfillment of a promise, and a God who still speaks and answers prayer.

Happy birthday, Isaac!