My baby turns 18 today. Yep, Ezekiel is now a man. From his beard and low voice most people think he turned 18 years ago, but nope, today's the day.
It takes me back to 2002, the year he was born. That was a crazy year! Ezekiel was born in April and from there everything went downhill. That was the year I had my first hernia (yes, I said first) and Amy had an emergency hysterectomy. There were some other "fun" moments that year, but for today let's focus on Amy's surgery.
It was July 30, 1994, 20-year old Doug and and 19-year old Amy pledged that for better or for worse, in sickness and in health they would forsake all others and become husband and wife until death did them part. In January of 1995 Amy announced to Doug that she was pregnant with their first child, and from there until 2002 as Amy puts it, "I was pregnant or nursing for 7 straight years." So it was in early 1996, Amy announced her second pregnancy. In 1998 number three, and in 2000 number four. Amy was tired of this and in tears from fatigue and also from guilt of not being happy of another child being on the way, would say, "Why, God?"
So, in the fall of 2001, Amy began feeling those familiar signs of pregnancy again, she cried out, "It's not possible!" Oh, but it was. Ezekiel was on the way! He was born on April 17 of 2002, and by June Amy was feeling a strange lump in her stomach followed by a lump in her throat. "Okay, this is NOT possible. I cannot be pregnant!" So she went to her doctor and sure enough she was not. It was a tumor attached to her ovary that was, at that time, the size of a grapefruit. At that point it was unknown if it was cancerous or not, but one thing was for sure it needed to come out.
So that December, at the ripe old age of 28, Amy had both ovaries and her lymph nodes removed, and from that point on it truly WAS impossible for Amy to be pregnant.
We often look back at those first 7-8 years of our marriage and are thankful that God gave us our children. It was never our plan to have them back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back like we did, but thankfully God knew what was coming in 2002 and made it so we could have our family.
So on Ezekiel's birthday each year I am reminded of this story and the verse that ALWAYS comes to mind is Proverbs 19:21,
"Many are the plans in the mind of a man,
but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand."
We all have plans. We all dream of how life and the path we travel will play out, but seldom, if ever, does it go the way we expect. God only knows where all the twists and turns will lead. My hope and prayer for you today is that while your plans may come to nothing, you will see the Lord had a purpose in all of it and that purpose continues to stand, and you will trust in Him to carry it out.
I know I get to see that each day when I see my beautiful wife and the five children God has blessed us with. And today, especially, as I get to celebrate my baby's 18th birthday.