Around the age of nine months, Nathan became quite unwell. My mother-in-law was holding him one time and he was gray and limp and kind of unresponsive. The doctor tested his urine and he had a urinary tract infection. She gave him antibiotics and he responded well. He was referred to Christchurch Public to have further investigation, just in case it was a kidney issue that was causing the UTI. He had to undergo some pretty invasive medical tests.
The results of his tests showed that he had grade 4 kidney reflux, which meant that he had to have surgery. His kidney was scarred because of the urine going back up to his kidney and they had to stop that from happening.
For us, and me in particular, the fear was very real. You have this child that you gave birth to and you just expect that everything is going to be fine. That they're going to grow up really well and healthy. Then suddenly, you're handing your child over to a medical team who are going to operate on him and to trust them that this was going to be okay, that he was going to come through this surgery.
There was a time that we had to hand him over to God as well. Holding onto faith for us took a whole new dimension. I journaled a lot, I cried a lot. I leaned into God so much and so closely. Whether Nathan was healthy, whatever the outcome of that surgery was, the hope in knowing that He held us and held Nathan, no matter what the outcome. We had to lean into that, and that was so growing for us, that He would never let us go, He would hold us.
Going through this, it tests your marriage, it's such a deep thing to walk through. Nathan came out of that fine and after surgery, he really picked up in health and had a good appetite. We started to see this little boy really flourish. About 17 months of age, they discovered that he had very high blood pressure. In fact it was alarmingly high and the specialist was very, very concerned. They said to us that he would have to go on blood pressure tablets for the rest of his life.
It was an emotional roller coaster because suddenly you think he's going to come out of surgery well and he's going to get a really good prognosis. Then, to be told that he has to take medication for the rest of his life... What?? Our world was turned upside down enough from what had already happened. Mike and I decided that we wanted to pray for Nathan and really believe that God was going to heal him. We joined together and we prayed and we believed that Nathan would be healed. We hung on to every bit of faith that we had to believe for healing for him.
Then one day, when he was two years of age, we really felt to go to another church. We hadn't been there before, we just thought to go to the church in Lyttleton called The Door. I had this overwhelming feeling that today was the day that he was going to get healed. We went into the church and sat down, and I couldn't stop crying. I just said to Mike, "Today's the day. I just know he's going to get healed."
The pastor's wife was up the front and she had said, "I really believe that there's an anointing for healing. If anyone needs healing, please come up." I was too emotional so I said, "Mike, can you please take Nathan up." She prayed for him and I just knew that he was healed. We just spent the day rejoicing, and I couldn't wait to take him to the doctor's the next day.
We woke up that morning really excited because we knew that this was going to be proven as a miracle. It was wonderful, because I just knew when he put the cuff on and he was going to test his blood pressure that it was going to have a very good reading, but I didn't expect that it was going to be better than perfect.
It was amazing. We were really excited because he was discharged from the public system and he did not have to take any medication for his blood pressure because it was perfect. We really believed that his kidney was healed as well.
He's lived a really good life and a healthy life. Sometimes we want to work out who God is and try to understand Him, you know, with our own minds, but it's often just unfathomable. We only understand a little bit about God. Some people get healed and some don't. We are just so grateful that Nathan had the opportunity to be healed. I don't think it's anything that we did or that was deserving of Nathan over anyone else. But it just happened.
This whole journey has enlarged our understanding of Christ, and that sometimes it just doesn't work out the way we want, or the way we need. He is someone so reliable to hold onto in those times, and someone to just nestle into when you need that comfort and to be uplifted, and just to carry you through those times.