Mother’s Day 2011, the couple felt compelled to plead with God to give
them a child. They made their promise to the Lord public at their church. They
committed to dedicate this child to the Lord in the same way Hannah gave up
Samuel before he was ever born. They asked family and friends to pray with
them, asking God to bless them with a child.
A month and a half
later, their dream became reality. She was expecting! O the joy and the fear!
Could this be? Had God answered their prayer? Or was this yet another child to
be lost before he was ever born? The couple continued to pray and give God
glory for this conception.
At nine months, the
mother was hospitalized. Fear gripped everyone! Would their dreams die again,
or would God bless them with a new life?
This was reality for my
friends, Josh and Amanda Hanke. She and her husband Josh pleaded with the Lord to give
them a child. Time and again, their hopes had turned to heartbreak. Then on
February 3, 2012 God gave them the cry of their heart by bringing Ryder Hanke
into the world. What a miracle! Born at 4 lbs and 12 oz, he was so tiny. He had
to stay in the neonatal unit even after mom and dad returned home.
While their bodies were
at home, their heart was at the hospital with their miracle baby. Day after
day, they visited Ryder, praying for him, longing to bring him home. On
February 13, 2012, Little Ryder did just that! At last, Josh and Amanda were
able to bring home their son!
I share this with you
because it is one of hope! After nine months of praying with Amanda in the crying
room, week after week, begging God to protect Ryder, it was with exceedingly
great joy that we prayed for him this past Sunday in that same crying room,
only this time he was with us not in utero, but in the flesh! Ephesians 3:20
tells us that God is able to do immeasurably more than we could ever ask or
imagine. When I look into Ryder’s face, I see hope. I see the result of
answered prayers! I am reminded of the widow who continued to plead with the
judge until he heard her case. I am inspired to continually seek God’s face in
earnest, not giving up hope!