9th April 2014

The Hardest Night

Seventh of a Series 

“‘Do not lay a hand on the boy,’ he said.  ‘Do not do anything to him.  Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.’  Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns.  He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.”
Genesis 22:12-13 (NIV)
 

Last time I recounted the start of our daughter Lydia’s fight for life with a severe respiratory infection.  Thankfully the doctors managed to stabilise her, but it wasn’t the end.  “Have you had any photos taken with Lydia today?” the consultant asked.  “We’ve got lots of photos,” we replied.  “No, I think it’s very important you have some today.”  Then we understood.  It was about 11pm when the team finally arrived from London to transport Lydia to a specialist unit at a larger hospital.  Migrating every wire to miniature equipment meant 2 more hours before the journey.  Once there we were ushered into a parents’ room and just asked to wait. 

All kinds of thoughts rushed through our heads.  Was Lydia ok?  Were they just transferring equipment, or were there complications?  Eventually a consultant explained they needed to replace the tube in Lydia’s airway to help the ventilator work effectively.  We learnt later that this doctor was also a paediatric anaesthetist, expert at inserting lines and tubes into tiny locations, so it was a real blessing she was on duty.  But during this we were left alone again for several hours.  Was it just taking longer than expected, or was there a problem?  Were they even fighting to save Lydia’s life?  I cried out to God again that He would bring her through this, that now we’d come this far she’d be ok, and that there would be no lasting damage either from the loss of oxygen or from too much oxygen from the ventilator.  And I prayed that God would give us the strength to get through this whatever happened. 

Finally about 5am we were able to see Lydia.  She lay surrounded by a huge suite of equipment, wires everywhere, science fiction-like.  The new tube had been successfully inserted, and thankfully the ventilator oxygen was reduced from 90% to about 40%.  Lydia was so tiny, pale, fragile, but she was alive, and it was strangely calm in the quiet of the early morning.  It had been the hardest night of our lives, but the worst was over. 

Experiencing Lydia’s survival brought to mind how Abraham must have felt in the scripture above, when his son Isaac was spared by God providing an alternative offering.  But much more than that, God also provided a lamb to spare the life of all of us.  Jesus Christ took on that burden and pain unto death, so that no matter what circumstances befall us in this life it isn’t the end.  That night seeing Lydia so near to death I got the closest I ever have to understanding how the God of love must have felt watching His only son suffer and die carrying the sin of all humanity.  I saw a glimpse of what God went through for each one of us, and believe me it is not a nice place to be.  But praise God He was willing to do it! 

Prayer
Almighty God, thank you so much for saving Lydia’s life when she was so tiny, and even more than that, thank you from the bottom of our hearts that you gave us your son to save our lives too.  In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.
Amen
 

Study by Simon Williams

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*You can read previous episodes of this study by going to the archive button on the website www.daybyday.org.uk and finding the dates 6, 13, 20 & 27 November 2013.  This series resumed on 26 March & 2 April 2014 continuing weekly.  The studies will appear on 16 and 23 April, with the concluding study on 30 April 2014. 

Lydia Williams 5 for 2014-04-About the Author:
Simon Williams is active in the Cambridge Congregation of the Worldwide Church of God.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God Cambridge
Comberton Village Hall
Green End
Comberton
CAMBRIDGE
CB23 7DY

Meeting time:
Saturday 2:00 pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Bill Lee
Email:  cambridge@wcg.org.uk

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