Each of our children are unique. One of the unique things about Tanika is that ‘things’ seem to happen to her without explanation. It’s been like this since the day she was born. (Who can explain surviving all odds and living against doctor’s ‘recommendations’, except it was a bonafide miracle?) Had I been writing this blog back in 1992 there would surely be many posts of these unexplainable instances. This entry is about one such time.
It happened on a Thursday a few weeks ago. Tanika came home from school with her left hand/wrist wrapped in an ace bandage. Of course I asked right away what was amiss. She said with all the detail of a teenager, “I hurt my wrist.” Is that so. I stubbornly waited for more information without asking for it (this may be where she gets her stubborn streak). She finally caved and began to explain that she was straightening out her arm/hand and rolling her wrist, the way one does when one is feeling fatigued from writing (note she is not left-handed). Suddenly something kind of ‘popped’, and her wrist started swelling and was paining her (please excuse my incorrect grammar, but it seems so much more efficient to speak as an African would and change the noun to a verb). She was given ice packs to keep on it and swallowed some Tylenol. When she came home the swelling was gone but the pain wasn’t. There really wasn’t much of an explanation as to what had happened. Really no event that instigated the pain. We figured it couldn’t be broken and that it just needed time to heal itself. By Saturday morning things were no better. In fact, it seemed that she couldn’t turn her lower arm so as to position her thumb to point up. And her wrist looked a bit twisted.
I avoid local doctors here like I would avoid a beehive. (The reasons for that would be a topic for another post). However, we thought maybe an x-ray was called for. And I wasn’t even too sure about getting that done. Trae had an x-ray when he broke his collarbone and when a trained osteopath from Belgium (he works in Niger) first looked at it he said it was a bad x-ray, but that it looked like Trae would only need a brace. That was until he saw Trae in the flesh and saw a piece of his bone sticking out. That’s when he said – “no, this will need surgery.” Thus I was not very confident in getting an x-ray. We called the Belgium doctor but it being a Saturday, couldn’t get him. So we called one of the ‘better’ hospitals to find out about an x-ray. It seemed that they too couldn’t be bothered on the weekend. So at that point, there wasn’t much more we could do. We decided to wait until Monday to see what route we would pursue.
Sunday we went to church as we always do. I sat on the front row like I normally do, next to Tobi the drummer. Tanika was sitting with a friend a couple rows behind me. During the praise and worship a ‘thought’ popped into my head. It wasn’t something I had even been thinking about, so I know it wasn’t my thought, it was the Holy Spirit. It would be really great if Tanika’s wrist was healed during the worship service while she was praising God. Hmmm. That was a great thought. I didn’t say anything to Tanika, but just prayed that God would touch her and left it at that. We had not had any discussion about this whatsoever. I didn’t dwell on it or even pray really hard. I just continued singing. Within 5 minutes Tanika walked up to me. She had taken the ace bandage off her arm and was holding it up. There were tears streaming down her face. I have to be honest – my first thought was that it was really hurting her and she needed it to be re-bandaged. The music was pretty loud so she had to get right in my face. She hugged me when she said ‘my wrist is healed’!! I asked her what happened. She said she was just standing there singing and first her wrist got cold, then it go hot. Then she felt like taking the bandage off and she was able to move it all around. It was truly a miracle! She went up on the platform and told Neal what had happened and gave her testimony to the church. Wow!
I’ve seen lots of cool things while living in Niger these past 10 years. But how wonderful it is when God does a miracle like this for one of our own children. “Un-provoked” so to speak. She said she hadn’t even prayed about it – wasn’t even thinking about it. God just did it because He wanted to delight in her. And He wanted her to know His power. And He wanted her to know that He is Almighty God, and nothing is too big or small for Him to do for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. And you should know that He is no respector of persons – what He did for her, He will do for you!