Little Miss Ivy - Encouragement Café - October 31

Little Miss Ivy
 By Olivia Barnes

Dnot be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 ESV

Do you know how awesome our God is? He answers prayer. He heals. He pours out blessings upon our lives. Blessings we do not deserve and more than we could ever imagine.

My desire is to encourage you, to point you to the One who can renew your hope and your strength. To do this I wish to tell you about little Miss Ivy, my baby daughter.

October 2018, the pregnancy test was positive! As the date of my 12 week ultrasound scan approached excitement built. When the day finally arrived my husband and I sat in the waiting room giddy with excitement. My name was called and the scan began. My husband squeezed my hand in anticipation ... but soon the squeeze turned to one of reassurance and support. Something wasn’t quite right. The midwife was quiet and went over the scan time and time again. There was an anomaly, a clear indicator that something was up, an abnormality which would lower quality of life and life expectancy. We were in shock. It wasn’t what we had come expecting to hear. The consultant explained that we’d be referred to fetal medicine for further specialist scans, saying ‘I’m sorry, all I can do is offer you a hug’. It was evident to them, from the scan, that there was a significant issue. Back in the car we held each other, cried and prayed. We prayed for healing but we also knew that every child is a blessing, so if this was a journey God had planned out for us we prayed that He would strengthen us and equip us to walk it. We didn’t tell many people, but God’s people prayed.

It wasn’t the most pleasant wait (or the most pleasant pregnancy to be fair). But approximately 2 weeks later we travelled back to the hospital for our appointment with fetal medicine. The doctor was dumbfounded, the scans didn’t match up. His scan showed none of the abnormalities which were so significant and obvious just 2 weeks earlier.

God answers prayer.

We were however referred to fetal cardiology. Another wait, another scan and this time they asked us to come back for a follow up appointment as it appeared as though a section of the heart wall could be missing.

Again God’s people prayed and you know what? God answered prayer. Our follow up appointment showed a perfectly formed and developed heart.

But that’s not the end of Ivy’s story of God’s protection.

At 6 months pregnant I, along with my 18 month old, were involved in a serious car accident, a car coming towards us flipped and rolled down the road smashing into the driver’s side of my vehicle. The fact my vehicle did not have side airbags quite possibly saved my baby’s life. Additionally, police mapping of the scene concluded that if my vehicle had been 2 foot further back all three of us would have been killed.

God is good, how often does He protect us and we are not even aware of it.

On June 23rdIvy arrived. A healthy little girl weighing 7lb 14.5oz, born at 1:40am and discharged from hospital by 10am the same day. Our miracle.

At 5 days old Ivy had her heel prick screening test. At 21 days this had to be repeated due to an abnormality. The repeated test flagged up a genetic marker for cystic fibrosis and further testing was required.

Again God’s people prayed. And again God answered, the results were clear.

Ivy was then diagnosed with hip dysplasia. Another wait, another appointment. But at her follow up ultrasound scan her hips were described as healthy, not just healthy, they were more developed and healthier than was expected for such a young baby. 

God answers prayer.

Throughout this journey God demonstrated His power and His compassion time and time again through answers to prayer, protecting and sustaining us at each and every step.

Write down God’s blessings, His answers to prayer, praise Him and keep them within reach for those days when it seems like things are falling apart, remembering that God is in control and He hears and answers prayer.

Thank you Lord for your compassion. Thank you that the details of our lives are not outside of your control. That we can bring those things which we stress and worry about to you in prayer, knowing that you care, you hear us and you will answer. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2019 by Olivia Barnes.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 31 October 2022.