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Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Champion

On October 27, 1980, my husband and I were overjoyed at the birth of our second child. John Drake Phillips weighed in at 8 pounds 10 ounces and was born with a black eye – our “heavyweight fighter” we joked. Ironically, in just a few days our little champion faced a fight for his life.

Baby John awoke the morning of his two-week birthday in distress. He was whimpering like a sick puppy, so I went to his crib to see what was wrong. I couldn't get him to open his eyes.

Picking him up, I tried to get him to nurse, without success. The entire time his eyes were tightly closed and he continued his high-pitched whine. I rushed him to the doctor’s office where I was advised go immediately to the hospital. Our baby was admitted. My husband and I were in shock. What happened? How did our healthy son get so sick?

After several tests, a pediatrician met with us. He was very somber as he gave the diagnosis: bacterial spinal meningitis. John could die.

The doctor said John probably picked up a bug in the delivery room that over the previous two weeks infiltrated his entire system. Our hearts raced and we felt like we were in the middle of a nightmare.

The doctor explained, “If John’s fever breaks, he might have a chance.”

Over the next twelve days, my husband and I took turns spending the night at the hospital. For days the fever continued to rage in John’s limp body. The evening of the seventh day I stood by his bed and whispered in his ear, “Don’t give up, Baby Boy. Don’t give up.” My spirit cried out to his, “Keep fighting, John. Daddy and Mommy love you so much.”

We were not allowed to hold John, but the nurses set up a cot and chair in his room for us. One night during my watch, a nurse turned the television to The 700 Club. A gospel group was singing Because He Lives.

How sweet to hold a newborn baby.
And feel the pride and joy he gives.
But greater still the calm assurance,
This child can face uncertain days,

As they sang, I sensed the presence of God come into the room. I cried uncontrollably. As if the musicians were physically in the room with me, one of the singers stopped the song and said, "There's a newborn baby who is very sick in the hospital.”

I sat stunned. Could she be talking about our baby?
She continued, "The doctors told you that your baby might die, but God wants you to know that this sickness is not unto death. Your baby is going to live."

The group started singing again and finished the song. As they sang the final chorus, the peace of God devoured my anxieties, and I knew John was going to live. I knew God was going to heal our son.

I felt John’s forehead. He still had a high fever, but I raised my hands to Heaven anyway and thanked God for healing our son. I knew God was granting a miracle to our family. In the middle of the night John's fever broke.

"John has had a dangerously high fever several days.” The doctor said the next morning. “He is going to live, but he might have brain damage."

Amazingly, my heart stayed peaceful at the announcement. No fear, no what ifs terrorized my soul. I had experienced a visit from Heaven, and I knew that John was going to be OK. A few days later we took our baby boy home completely whole.

Twenty-six years have passed, and we still reminisce about the day Jesus visited our baby the hospital room and healed him. We are convinced that without God’s supernatural touch from Heaven, our little boy wouldn't have had a fighting chance – even though he was born with a black eye.

4 comments:

Connie Arnold said...

What a beautiful story of God's loving power and peace, Dixie! It's wonderful to read about this special miracle of healing for your son. Thank you for sharing it.

Claire said...

Wow, what a beautiful story! God is SO faithful!

I found your blog through your daughter, Beka's. I love all 3 of your girls blogs and have found friendships in all of them. They are all amazing women and I know that is a tribute to you! I look forward to reading your blog and learning from you as well :)

Dixie Phillips said...

Connie,
Your words of affirmation always bless me. Thank you.

Claire,
Your kind post brought tears to my eyes. Thank you sooo much for taking the time to hug on an old woman's neck through cyberspace. I'm going to have to start following you. You're better than a HAPPY PILL. **tee hee!**

Stacy T said...

I came across you from the Boost your Buzz on Facebook and enjoyed your posts so much there that I looked you up to here. I always like to check my source, I guess you could say. You definatly checked ou in my book! This post made me cry, Thank you so much for sharing and reminding me what a personal God we serve who cares about just me (or you)and my most desperate need enough to take time out of running the entire world to speak to us personally. How amazing He is and sometimes we need a little reminder. Thanks again.

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