Posted on

Wonderfully Made: My Amazing Miracle Birth Story

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don't thank God for them.

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don’t take time to thank God for them.

(Heaven not Harvard is a participant in affiliate programs including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Have you ever read the Old Testament and wondered how in the world the Jews could see so many miracles and keep turning away from God? 

I know I do.

Especially shocking is the story of the Israelites leaving Egypt after all the plagues and the angel of death passing over the Israelite homes. God leads them as pillar of cloud during the day and a pillar of fire at night. Despite witnessing God’s CLEAR, miraculous intervention, at the Red Sea, they cursed God and Moses for bringing them out of Egypt to die. 

 A few days after God parted the sea, they’re complaining about the lack of water and food. God provides water FROM ROCKS, then manna and quail. They still doubt and complain. They had God walking with them and still forgot the miracles He had done.

So how does this relate to my life?

Because sometimes I forget what a miracle it is that I’m even here. My miracle birth story is pretty amazing. I’m truly appalled sometimes at how often I forget what a miracle God wrought in my life from the very beginning.

Back in 1971, when a couple went to the hospital to have a baby, they didn’t know what they were going to have: boy or girl, one or two, healthy or not. And I was not.

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don't thank God for them.

I was born with a fairly rare birth defect called gastroschisis, in which the abdominal wall does not form properly. All my abdominal organs were outside of my body. My abdominal muscles and skin did not close.

My dad says I came with assembly required.

My dad says I came with assembly required, but I really needed a miracle. I got several! Click To Tweet

While he jokes now, in 1971, babies with gastroschisis didn’t live. Only about 18% even survived initially.

But this is where the story gets good!

The best part of my miracle birth story started before my conception.

The doctor, obviously taken aback, was not sure what to do with this seriously damaged, tiny infant.  In this moment, God’s hand had been so evidently working things for my good years before I was born, because my mother’s obstetrician was the father of a young man my father had befriended in college.

Jeremiah 1:5 ESV / “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don't thank God for them.

As the doctor contemplated what to do, whether the kindest act was to let me die, he said he couldn’t bear to write his son that evening and tell him that he hadn’t done everything possible to save Bill’s daughter.

I love that God planted a relationship between my father and this young man years before I was even a possibility.

Once the doctor had a plan, things moved pretty quickly. They decided to transport me 30 miles to Children’s Memorial in Chicago.

Then, I almost died in the ambulance because I had ingested so much air. With exposed organs and without stomach muscles, I had no way to expel gas. My stomach expanded frighteningly.

However, the doctor had absentmindedly stuck the nasal bulb in his lab coat pocket. He said it was something he had never done before. He used it to save my life.

When we arrived, the emergency team couldn’t get an IV into my tiny body. My father’s army medic training kicked in. He told the nurses to use a cutdown. And they did it! I actually have three tiny scars from that procedure.

At this point, the nurses realized they didn’t recognize my father as a doctor. He laughingly recalls saying, “I’m not a doctor. I’m the kid’s father!” They promptly escorted him from the OR.

Again, God’s hand is in the details.

The number one expert in the world in gastroschisis was on call that day. He was able to close up my abdominal skin with one surgery and I lived pretty much consequence free until I was in college and developed some scar tissue that was causing issues.

I grew up hearing this story, but only as an adult did I realize how truly miraculous my birth really was and how many steps reflect God’s hand in all the details.

When my own daughter was in the NICU, her doctor was amazed that I lived and was so healthy.

My miracle birth story is a true testimony to how God works all things, even before our births. Click To Tweet

God wanted me here. 

Of course God plans all of our lives, but because of my miracle birth, I am more aware God has a plan and purpose for me.

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don't thank God for them.

This story has really been on my mind this week, as today is my birthday, but also because my daughter’s memory verse reminded me to consider truly how wonderful my life has been, despite my body’s failings and the difficulties I have faced.

Psalm 139:14 ESV / I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

I just have to stop and praise God for saving me that day. My body isn’t perfect. I’ve had my share of challenges, but God has always used them for my good. And now I just bask in His patient grace, waiting so many years for me to recognize His presence in my life, to wake up to His miracles.

Which takes me back to Moses. God was also evident in Moses’ life from his birth. The Pharaoh’s daughter adopted him from the reed basket in the Nile, saving him from her father’s orders to eradicate all Israelite male infants. Raised Egyptian, Moses grew up in the Pharaoh’s palace, making him the perfect intercessory for the Israelites.

How does my miracle birth story relate to the ancient Israelites? Because we so easily forget the miracles in our lives if we don't thank God for them.

Yet, before Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, he spent 40 years in hiding for killing a vicious slave driver. Despite God’s miracles in his life, when God called him, he felt unqualified.

Due to Satan’s manipulation of those around me and my own resultant sins, I had turned away from God. I lived like hell off and on for 20 years.

But God never let me go.

I could see God in my life, but let the world distract me. I forgot my miracle birth really was miraculous, not just a great story.
Like Moses, who had a pretty incredible birth story, I needed reminding that God had a purpose bigger than my sins. Today, I celebrate being 46 and walking again in the light, as a precious child of God.




Posted on

Dear Friend, My testimony – giving up changed everything.

Dear Friend, My testimony is that giving up changed everything in my life and I want you to give up too! Total surrender was my victory.

Dear Friend, this is my testimony about how I took a failing marriage, bitter heart, broken body and gave up . . .

. . . but giving up changed my life. And I really want you to give up, too.

(this site uses Affiliate links-purchases support our ministry through a small referral fee that never affects your cost.)

I’ve been trying for weeks to find the words to share my testimony and faith, but honestly, I’m scared I’ll say the wrong thing and push you away from hearing more about Christ.

I wish we could sit together, curled around cups of coffee, lean into each other and talk, but right now that isn’t possible, and I don’t want to wait any longer.

Curl up around a cup of coffee and fellowship.

None of us have a tomorrow guarantee.

I don’t want another person I love to leave this life without knowing my savior. Losing you for eternity scares me sick to my stomach.

Dear Friend, I don't know where to start, but I want to share how giving up changed my life! Click To Tweet

Let me borrow five minutes to share my testimony.

So I’m humbly asking you to bear with my clumsy struggle to find words that speak my heart. Please overlook my shortcomings, and try to see Christ in me.

Because I love you, I want to share how I came to realize I wasn’t strong enough alone, and how strong I’ve become from admitting my weakness.

Romans 1:16 ESV  For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes,

My testimony is that real brokenness and healing is more powerful than my pretend perfection ever was.

While raised in a Christian household,  sins and hurts had turned me away from God. I followed my own ideas of being a good person until I realized my astounding powerlessness even over myself. Faced with rock bottom, I was desperate.

Trying to be a pretty good person without Christ led me to the nuclear disaster another marriage had become.

Being a pretty good person wasn’t enough.

When I kept being a controlling nag and unmitigated perfectionist, making the same mistakes over and over, I realized no human being could save me, not myself, not other ‘pretty good’ people, only God through His son, Jesus.

Jesus Christ was flesh and God. He lived a painful, fragile existence but without sinning, and took the torturous death I deserved, so I could have the hope of an eternity in God’s presence.

My real brokenness and healing is more powerful than my pretense of perfection ever was. Click To Tweet

God built into every human being an ache within us to know Him.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 ESV  “. . . Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, “

For me, that need manifests as a gaping emptiness, a feeling of never belonging nor being truly loved.

I tried filling that emptiness with books, food, diets, friends, exercise, cigarettes, boys, drinking, marriages, children. Anything to distract me from the painful, empty void.

Temporary fixes never satisfy an eternal need.

Always the hunger pangs for more would return, and I would race towards the next fix.

When I find my soul mate, I will feel complete.

Well, then the honeymoon ended. Even my husband couldn’t satisfy the need for perfect love, though he tries every day.

And the hole in my pretend wholeness reappeared.

When I’m a mom, that will be it.

Even the one longing I clutched for decades (raising a baby) wasn’t the answer. My role in her life is temporary in many ways. I need an eternal identity that will never fade.

When I realized everything is temporary, I needed an eternal identity. Click To Tweet

I’ve wanted to die, hiding from the world, hoarding all the hurts from my struggles with my weight, illnesses and injuries, vanity, and rejection, violence. Nothing ever truly satisfied the deep ache in my heart that I was not enough.

I needed an eternal identity.

Until God said, you don’t need to be enough for anyone else, you are Mine; that is enough.

And His love began to fill my broken places.

Isaiah 43:1 ESV  But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, . . . “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.

When I struggle, this verse sings peace to my soul. I belong to Him, the Creator of the universe. You do too, and can hold fast to that precious claim the second you give up trying to do life alone and ask for Him.

He lovingly formed me for His purpose. I don’t always understand what purpose I could have, but I’m astounded by the ways my challenges bring opportunities to share Christ.

Through all my many trips to the emergency room or waiting room or hospitals, I have seen God use those times & give me opportunities to witness. I’ve shared my testimony with nurses, doctors, physical therapists.

Not one of the painful parts of my life has been wasted once I surrendered my life to God’s will.

Despite accepting Christ at six, I didn’t really believe I was so bad I needed saving until I realized my choices and sin had destroyed my life. Then, I just knew God couldn’t possibly want me.

Mark 2:17 ESV  And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Three marriages – I’m still struggling with the shame of how I failed in my prior marriages. I wasted years running in every direction except towards Him.

But God has a fantastic history of using people long after the world deemed them useless: Moses, Sarah, Hannah, Paul.

Then, I thought I had to clean up my life before I could come home.

Every morning, I’d wake determined to live better, be less angry, be more calm, have more joy and peace. And I’d do really great . . . until my feet hit the floor, and it would all implode. I was trying to live God’s peace without knowing Him!

Desperately trying to be good enough for God, but finally so broken by life, I cried, “Lord, I’m here, waiting for you!”

Romans 10:13 ESV  For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

A light turned on in my heart. All the times I’d heard God calling me, feeling condemned, He’d been whispering, “just come as you are, Jesus paid it all.”

What took me so long?

Before, I would get angry at religious sentiments. I had decided God wasn’t real. I was just going to live my life. So why did joyful Christians make me so angry?

Deep inside, I felt convicted that I’d been living a lie, hiding from the truth. Thankfully, God put people in my path to redirect my steps as part of calling me home.

Dear Friend, My testimony is that giving up changed everything in my life and I want you to give up too! Total surrender was my victory.

Repentance changes everything.

Repent literally translated means to grieve my sins and change. I wish I could accurately describe the sweet freedom of repentance. Admitting my sins and failures sounds hard and embarrassing, but the GRACE that washed over me still brings tears to my eyes.

Romans 8:1-4 ESV  There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

And when I surrendered, God changed my mind, my heart, my marriage, my parenting, my relationships and continues to change me daily.

I have so many stories I could add to my testimony, so many sweet verses I could share, this letter could go on and on, but this song says it all so beautifully.

But what I want you to know is that Jesus paid our price so we can live in freedom. Once we accept His Grace, God sees us through the lens of that sacrifice. We are made pure even though we cannot be wholly without sin while we live.

Still unsure?

You probably have lots of questions, verses you’ve heard taken out of context, or ideas about what it means to be a Christian, but lay all that down for a second.

If you’re hearing God whisper in your heart, “Come as you are,” then come.

I do not believe there is one specific prayer all believer’s must pray, but all believers must accept Christ and prayer is how we speak to Him.

Dear Lord,  I recognize I’m a sinner and humbly ask forgiveness for my sins. I accept Jesus died as a sacrifice for my sins, and I want to give you the rest of my life. Please change and guide me, drawing me closer to you daily. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

You cannot be too bad for God to heal.

When I thought I was too ruined for God, too dirty and shameful, I found this verse. Imagining God cleaning my heart like a treasured vase, I sobbed joyful tears.

2 Timothy 2:21 ESV Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.

God loves you deeper than any love you’ve ever known. If you hear His voice or feel a tug on your heart, He has laid claim on you and wants to call you His.

If you’ve read this far, maybe a piece of you wants to be loved this entirely, to feel His presence in your everyday. I’m here to talk if you’re ready.

If you’ve made the decision to follow Christ today, I really want you to find a local church and fellowship with strong believers. Spending time with them and in God’s word is crucial.

I love the YouVersion App because I can change translastions of the Bible with the touch of a button and can follow a reading plan, like the First Steps Reading Plan.

If any of my testimony has resonated with you, whether or not you made a decision today, pick up one of these books written by atheists who became convinced of Christ. They’ll answer questions and help you on your journey.

No matter where you are, no matter who you’ve been, the invitation is always open. He’s calling you in. Come broken-hearted, let healing begin.