Gabriel teen ager with mom and dad
Gabriel teen ager with mom and dad

I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 

Luke 1:19b

For all my talk about uncomfortable grace, rejected requests and love’s frets and rubs, you must also know this. I must share the good news of Gabriel, our messenger of God story.

Gabriel’ Sent

Once upon on time, sixteen years ago today, plus nine months but really only seven

It was then, Gabriel, you first made known your presence.

But we must go back before that—back, back, back.

Because it was ten years before these last sixteen years

Twenty-six years ago, it was when dad and I became one.

For most of our first ten years (big brother came by plane after nine)

We hoped and prayed and tried

How hard we hoped and prayed and tried

And too much, I think, I cried.

Books and experts came and went and doctors poked around inside

Every attempt and method failed and empty wombs like stomachs ache 

I was so so hungry but it was not your time.

God’s kids run the race and walk by faith and trust his promises are true

That ache is not waste, that trials produce, that no good thing does he withhold

And all those who wait on the Lord will be renewed.

We stopped the doctors, ceased our striving and pressed and prayed right through

Until one August Aunt Char and I decided the Whistlestop is what we’d run.

Then came October and an early snow

Still we plowed six hours north to run that 26.2—

We two ran, with a third I didn’t know, and finished in four hours smooth.

At home, coffee tasted strange and this night owl was ready for bed by seven

So I took a test I’d failed two dozen times

But this time the stripes said YES

Your frame was a full eight-weeks old

But that crisp autumn morning I knew about you.

I pinch myself tonight thinking how your name rings true—

You are God’s YES to thousands, thousands, of prayers for love’s fruit

“STRENGTH” and “HEARD” of God, you sons, and so good we asked for more.

But the LORD, for righteous reasons He only knows

Never again opened that door.

You are no angel, but still a messenger to tell

That God alone sets times and seasons and even our days

To show again that no good thing does He withhold

And that His ways are not our ways.

It’s been 16 years since I first laid eyes on that bright-eyed, long-lashed baby

But I never will forget the truth that heaven sent in you

That it’s when we cease striving we really know the strength and goodness of God

That is the good news you brought us, Gabriel, our gift and messenger of God.

Who is like the Lord our God,
    who is seated on high,
who looks far down
    on the heavens and the earth?

He gives the barren woman a home,
    making her the joyous mother of children.
Praise the Lord!

Psalm 113:5-6, 9 (ESV)





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  1. I remember the announcement of your pregnancy, in church, and the indrawn breath of a thrilled congregation. <3 God is good.

  2. I did not know.( smiling)
    My oldest daughter is baren still, kept her womb dangerously long – compromising her life. Even as her mom, I don’t really know the empty ache of the baby space.
    I rejoice with you and am so glad there is a Gabriel!!!

    1. Thanks for reading, and sharing. Please extend my sympathy to your oldest daughter. Yes, the Proverbs (30:15-16) nails it: Three things are never satisfied; four never say, “Enough”: Sheol, the barren womb, the land never satisfied with water, and the fire that never says, “Enough.” And yet, in Christ, by grace, through faith, the barren womb has helped teach me that this world is not my home. “They looked to the city above,” like Hebrews says, right?

  3. Your story resonates with me! Our stories are VERY similar. All the waiting and doctors and medical bills and tears and prayers…until we said no more because we had drained our savings account to nothing. From there, we left it up to God. We prayed about adoption. We started to collect literature from different agencies. His timing was perfect, as it always is. (We announced the pregnancy to Nick’s mom just a few days after she had to put her favorite dog down due to illness. She definitely needed a bit of good news!) Benjamin was born on his due date and was a pretty easy baby. We were blessed with two more (more challenging than the first baby, for sure, but still bundles of joy), which is truly a testament to God’s power given my medical condition.

    1. Thanks Jackie! His time for sure, and His power to create life, against any odds, if He likes. It’s a real gift to see God’s hand in our lives, isn’t it?

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