OBSERVATION: A testimony of God’s faithfulness! When I read this verse I could truly say – “Hallelujah”! This verse is the testimony of what the Lord did for my wife and I.
I will never forget Thanksgiving day, 1992. We had returned from celebrating Thanksgiving with my parents, and Karen and I sat down in front of the fireplace. We had been married 16 and a half years, and we had never had a child. At first, we were content with waiting. Yet, as the years went by, it seemed to become apparent that we were not able to have children. So, sitting in front of the fireplace we began to talk about something we had never discussed before – adoption.
We wanted to have a family that we could share our love with, and the only option that we could consider at this juncture was adoption. I began to gather information about Christian adoption agencies, and we continued to talk about this new step of faith in our lives. Thanksgiving quickly turned into Christmas with all of the business of the season. We were so busy that I never took the next step in setting up a meeting with the adoption agency. We celebrated Christmas with my parents once again, and then headed home – to sit around the fireplace. Then something wonderful happened, something miraculous, something unexpected.
Little did I know that Karen had been carrying a prayer in her heart for a few years prior to this. This prayer was that she could become a “joyful mother”. We had both settled on the fact that it would be through adoption. And, may I interject that adoption is one of the highest and holiest callings that a couple can undertake in their lives. When I think of how we all have been adopted as sons and daughters of God, how could anything be any closer to God’s heart than adoption? Yet, the Lord had another plan in mind for us. As we sat around the familiar fireplace Karen told me – “I’m pregnant!”
I could not believe what I was hearing. After 16 and a half years…Karen was pregnant? Then she shared with me the prayer that she had been carrying in her heart for years. At once I knew that this was God’s Grace being extended to answer the cry of Karen’s heart. At this moment Psalm 113:9 became a reality –
- “He makes a woman who is in a childless home a joyful mother. Hallelujah!” (GW)
All through the years we had taken care of every kind of animal you could imagine. I would always call my mother and tell her she was going to be a grandmother. Over the years she would learn that it was for a dog, a cat, a fish, a bird, a Guinea pig, a turtle, etc. When I called her to share the news she proclaimed – “Yes, Kirk – what is it this time?” I said, “Mom, no your don’t understand, you are going to be a grandmother!” She replied, “Stop playing around Kirk!” I said, “Mom, I am serious, I am not kidding, Karen is pregnant, you are going to be a grandmother!” With tears in her voice, she dropped the phone and I heard her cry out “Carl!” (my father’s name).
Rest assured, we would have been equally blessed had we adopted. The promise would still have remained true. It is not how we receive our wonderful daughter, it is that we did! On August 23, 1993 a beautiful baby girl was added to our family. We named her Hannah Elizabeth after the two wonderful women in the Bible who also cried out to the Lord because they could not have a child. Hannah received Samuel. Elizabeth received John the Baptist. Karen and I received Hannah Elizabeth Zehnder – and our lives have never been the same! We daily thank the Lord for her life and rejoice over the woman of God she has become. Now a Senior in College we cannot wait to see what God has in store for her life.
As I read the Bible I find one amazing truth – God is no respecter of persons. This does not mean that He does everything exactly the same for everyone. However it does mean that He hears the prayers of His sons and daughters and delights in answering them with HIs Abundant Grace. We are such recipients, and you can be too! Simply call upon the Lord. He delights in giving His children the Kingdom!
In Jesus Name!