like men who dreamed.


“Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed. She is not dead but asleep.” He took her by the hand and said, “My child, get up!” and her spirit returned. Her parents were astonished.                                  {luke 8:50,52-56}

Our friends are moving to Lebanon. Dealing with the reality of refugees, of crisis, homelessness, trauma, and death. Death, dying, buried. Words we use freely when talking about the gospel. We spent time in prayer together, asking God to provide the needed funds, thanking Him their teenagers also felt a desire to go to the Middle East.

As we said goodbye, Gert glanced around, asked, “Where’s Eden?” Instinctively our eyes went to the back gate. It was open. I ran outside, a quick survey of the backyard and no Eden. The pool gate was open. I ran to look, seeing nothing at the pool, ran inside the house to check the other rooms. Then came the desperate screams. Etian held his sister in his arms. She was limp, blue, and hanging like a trail of ivy over a brick wall. From his arms to my arms to Daddy’s arms.

From the daybed, I hear “Step one, step two, step three. Step one, step two, step three.” I searched for the emergency number, but no one knew what it was. Finally we connected with ER24 but when they asked me, “Where is Kuils River?” I knew they wouldn’t be our heroes that day.

‘We are not going to lose a child today,’ were my only thoughts.

I couldn’t watch as Eden lay on the bed. Verbalising what we were all thinking but didn’t dare to say, Evangeline wouldn’t stop…”Eden die? Eden die?” Cold and blue.

We directed the kids to another room. They obliged. Finally, a pulse, and low, guttural, reflexive groans.  Go time-to the hospital. Our friend Michael drove him to the ER, and the kids and I waited and prayed in the Spirit and prayed Psalm 91 and refused to fear disaster and refused to despair.

I pleaded with our friends to pray. I got to the ER, and caught a glimpse of a towering heavenly figure standing at the head of Eden’s bed. My husband was very much in charge, with shocked eyes wide and red-rimmed. He spoke gently, matter-of-fact.  Eden lay sedated, white, on oxygen. Her X-rays were cloudy, lungs filled with fluid. Nothing felt real.

They said she’s going to be okay, but there was a possibility of brain damage. We don’t know how long she was under. I reconciled with the possibility of brain damage, and all I could think is that she is alive. Our pastor and his wife appeared, and Gerhard took Gert on a walk while Marinda and I went to the ICU with Eden.

‘Mom,’ Gabrielle told me later, ‘the day Eden fell in the pool was the worst day of my life and I’m glad its not that day anymore.’ 

We were confronted by a powerful enemy. Death. On the day of our disaster, God spoke:

He reached down from on high and took hold of me; 

he drew me out of the deep waters. 

He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me.

They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support.

He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.

{psalm 18:16-19}

All over the world people prayed. God wasn’t done with Eden yet. Her generation would see greater things than this. The dead shall be raised. She would live to declare the beauty of the Lord, and walk in close communion with him. The Lord said she will come through perfect. No damage, no lasting effects! She will live and declare the glory of the Lord.

God spoke to us through Isaiah 51:3 that she would be called Eden Joy. I remarked to my sister that she was not the easiest of babies, and with a middle name of Joy, I had thought she would be the epitome of happiness and contentment.

We brought her home from the hospital on Friday, and suddenly I knew why her middle name is Joy. When the Lord brought back the captives to Zion, we were like men who dreamed. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. {psalm 126:1-3}

I asked Evangeline (3years) what happened to Eden that day. She replied, “Eden fell into the pool, and then she went to sleep.” You see, Evangeline has changed her story. Her reality has come into alignment with the power of God displayed for our family to see.

Eden was not dead, she was only sleeping.



One thought on “like men who dreamed.

  1. Janice says:

    Powerful story; powerful words.

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