WHEN GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS…
When God answers prayers, it isn’t always the way we would like it. The yes’s we want, the healings we desire, and the life free from pain doesn’t always pan out in what seems to be our best interests. Thankfully, in spite of our desire for comfort, God answers us in ways that will eventually bring more glory and honor to Himself. We will all suffer, and in the midst of that suffering, there is a hand of comfort that does not work for our own selfish wants, but rather through God’s perfect care.
Today, after a second ultrasound to confirm an earlier suspicion, we were given the news that baby number 3 has a unilateral, right side, lip and possible cleft palate. For the last few weeks, we have been watching and praying that suspicions would be wrong, that healing would come, or that a mistake had been made. The answer we sought was out of a desire to see our child avoid future pain, and live in the same comfort that we had with our two older sons. For now, that is not the answer that we have received. We know that God is working out His perfect plan for not only us, but our child.
SO WHAT DOES THIS NEWS MEAN?
As far as we know, and the doctors can see, our baby has an area on the right side of its upper lip where the skin did not properly come together. It may also mean, but could not be confirmed by the ultrasound, that the gum and soft palate of the baby’s mouth did not properly fuse either. There is a team of doctors being put in place to give our child the best possible outcome that can be achieved once it is born, and the full scale of what is happening can be assessed. On a side note, our hospital is home to the top plastic surgeon in the world for cleft palates~ How much of a God thing is that? As far as we know at this point, the cleft lip is the only complication that the medical professionals can see. It is not life threatening, and our baby can live a full and wonderful life once it has had a few surgeries to correct the problems that present themselves when it is born. We know at this point that there will need to be at least one plastic surgery, but beyond that we are in the dark until some further testing has been done, or the baby is here.
SO WHAT DOES THIS CHANGE?
NOTHING: God still reigns, and is still good. We are living in a fallen world, and underneath the same curse of sin as everyone else. Though we are serving Jesus in a foreign field, we are not immune to sins effects. We are not super believers. We are not varsity Christians. We are fallen sinners, who have recognized our need for a Savior, and taken up the call to spread the good news of salvation to a lost and dying world. This does not protect us from experiencing suffering now, nor will it in the future. It is precisely in these times of trial that the world looks deeply, and scrutinizes with prejudice, how we will respond when things don’t seem to go our way. Please pray for us as we embark on this journey, that we will honor the Lord in a way that is pleasing and glorifying to Him.
EVERYTHING: As most of you know, we are coming up on the end of our first two years here in New Zealand. We have only raised monetary support to last us through this first visa, and we were due to come home in July to visit family, introduce our youngest two children to the US, and raise enough support for us to come back to New Zealand for another two years. Unfortunately, as far as we can tell thus far, the surgery schedule we will now need to follow will probably not allow for us to return to support raise in July. We feel the Lord’s leading for us to remain here for at least another two years. At this point, we believe we are to reapply for our visas immediately, continue ministering, and begin the journey of physical healing for our child. In order for this to happen, and things to proceed there are a few different ways in which we need your help!
HOW CAN YOU SUPPORT US?
PRAY: Besides the everyday trials of adjusting to a new baby, a third child, and a new way of life, there will be physical issues that will complicate the new season we are entering. Pray that we can quickly learn the best way to love and care for our baby physically, emotionally, and spiritually. We want to love, serve, and honor it in the best way possible! Pray that we can still continue to fully love and support the believers and unbelievers who God has blessed us with over these last two years. The last thing we want to do is turn all of our focus completely in on ourselves, and forsake the ministry that the Lord has given us. We are so thankful for all he has done here thus far, and are continuing in hope that people will be saved, and/or sanctified through the work of the Spirit in their lives. We are thankful that we get to be a part of it, and we hope to continue doing so.
GIVE: Raising our next two years support is going to look much differently now, and though we have not worked out all the logistics, we do know this-most of our leg work is going to need to be done from here in New Zealand. So…if you are already one of our current supporters, we would ask you to prayerfully consider partnering with us again for the next two years of our ministry. We would love to be home and sharing with you this summer all that God has been doing, but at this point, for the sake of our family, we need to be here. We ask for your understanding and care in this time, and know that if it were possible for us to see you face to face, we would do it as was originally planned.
If you are not one of our current supporters, but would like find out more about joining our partnership team, we will put our contact info at the bottom of this blog post in hopes that you will begin to journey with us while we serve here in New Zealand. We are also hopeful that we can complete at least one, if not a few, different videos about where we are, and how we are ministering here in Naenae.
SHARE: The more people see this post, the more believers there are to pray. The more people there are to support. The more people there are to give. If you know us, love us, and have journeyed with us so far, would you mind telling others about us, and our ministry? Would you raise up others to stand in the gap with us? Would you spread the word so that others pray fervently, and without ceasing? Can you ask of yourselves and others that they give, and give faithfully to our ministry? We are only here because God has put us here, and it is through His people that He has supported us to be where we are, doing what we are doing!
We need you. We need your love. We need your support. We need your prayers. Thank you so much for all you have given, and done so far in our ministry! We look forward to continuing this journey with you.
Monetary Support can be sent directly to:
First Baptist Church Covington
Memo: Cody and Cassie Chaplin
518 5th St.
Covington, In. 47932