An unexpected birth, an Ebenezer stone, and a God who remains Faithful – Asbury University
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An unexpected birth, an Ebenezer stone, and a God who remains Faithful

June 5, 2023

Sarah Matthews ’09 Bailie 

On November 17th, 2018, we found ourselves surrounded. Surrounded by dear friends and family who celebrated the coming birth of our little Girl. A sweet baby shower thrown by two of our dearest friends. All was tiny bows and sugar cookies, fuzzy footies and bite-sized quiche, coo-worthy dresses and cutesy shower games. 
All for the baby, at one point, we thought we would never conceive. 
All for the birth we thought was nearly three months away. 
Two weeks later we woke to a nightmare…the kind that steals the breath from your lungs and the beat from your heart. 
Our doctors believed that it was no longer safe for our daughter to remain in utero and would soon be removing her by emergency c-section. 
Soon was 15 minutes. 15 minutes. 
On December 6th, with an all-consuming dread, we welcomed our four pound baby girl into this world without so much as a caress of her tiny head before she was taken from us and placed in her incubator. 
Her first home…where she would remain for 22 horrifyingly long days. 
That Christmas was no Christmas at all for us. 
Every day we traveled to the hospital; weary, beaten, broken-hearted, and unsure. Every day we left without our baby girl in our arms; weary, beaten, broken-hearted, and unsure. 
…and every day we would chant to ourselves that God was good, that He still saw us, that His eye was, indeed, on our tiny sparrow. 
He is good. 
He did see us. 
His eye was on her for the night that lasted 1000 hours. 
…and once again, on the 17th of November, 2019, we found ourselves surrounded. Surrounded by friends and family celebrating a new birth for our sweet girl. The new birth of baptism and the promise of things still to come, work still to be done, faithfulness still to make itself known in the life of the baby we thought would never be. 
In the midst of our supreme uncertainty, God was already putting in place sweet Ebenezer stones to set our hearts ablaze with the knowledge that He has and will go before us. 
1 Samuel 7:12: “Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer saying ‘Thus far the Lord has helped us.’” 
1 Thessalonians 5:24: “The One who call you is faithful and He will continue to be faithful.” 
Thus far the Lord has helped us and He will continue to be faithful. Amen.