A Mother’s Story

Today, we have a treat! My mother is guest posting on my blog! I always knew my story telling abilities came from her!

I mentioned in this post that we would hopefully hear from others that walked through the fire with me with their stories of when I became ill 9 years ago. There are so many stories that occurred during that time that drew us closer to our Jehovah Rapha – “My Healer”

So without further adieu.. I share with you the words from Barbara Griffin.


On that day in May 2002, I (Barbara) got a 5:30 a.m. phone call from Kevin saying he and Amy were at the emergency room after having been up all night long. E. R. personnel would not allow a 2 week old infant there and he brought Carson to us. (Emilie-Grace, Amy and Kevin’s 4 year old, had come home with me the afternoon before.)

I assumed after getting about 8 hours of fluids into her at the hospital they would be back home with everyone in their rightful places. Later, that morning a physician friend did emergency surgery to retrieve the wayward gall stone that had blocked the bile duct resulting in the bile backing up into the pancreas and creating deadly havoc.

It would be 7 weeks from that date, when Kevin would bring Amy home from Shands Hospital in Gainesville, FL to our home where we were trying to carry on the best we could.

It is amazing how God gives you exactly what you need, when you need it, when you ask Him for it!

After Amy was transported by ambulance to Shands, with Kevin and Amy’s Father, Rusty, in hot pursuit, I began a journey into a faith walk that I never could have imagined in my wildest dreams.

This is the kind of news that somebody else gets or you read about in a magazine. God surely didn’t mean for my little girl to be this sick – fighting for her life everyday for the next several weeks, like a roller coaster ride that turned deadly.

I can remember giving Carson (2 weeks old) a bottle one night about 2:00 a.m. when God impressed on me, “Amy’s going to be alright….no matter what!”

I have told friends that up until that point I had trusted God, but I had never had a valley like this that made me realize that my faith was more like “dictionary faith”. I knew intellectually what faith meant, but I never had to trust HIM so completely with EVERYTHING. There was absolutely nothing that I could do except “the next thing” and that was whatever God told me to do.

While rocking Carson on the porch on day, I heard Michael W. Smith’s “Breathe” on a CD I was listening to. His lyrics resonated so strongly with me.

“This is the air I breathe, Your Holy Presence living in me,
This is my daily bread, your very word spoken to me –
And I’m desperate for you and I’m lost without you.”

Those words were what my mind and heart had been screaming!

A few minutes later, I looked up and down by our pond were wild turkeys – lots of them. My eyes were riveted to how many of them there were – dozens of them – brand new babies.

It was as if God sent me a promise in a whisper that He is the giver of life-like the precious granddaughter in my arms and He too was the only One Who could breathe new life back into my Amy.

My assignment was to just trust Him with the “no matter what.”

To mix things up a bit…never forget that God had a way of breaking the tension in the real stressful times with humor.

I was playing detective trying to find the right formula, because sweet Carson’s tummy not liking the formula we had to offer. She had been screaming for hours. Someone suggested I call the “triage nurses” at the neonatal unit at the hospital and ask their advice – this was a community service they offered.

I did and they advised. When I ended the call, a friend there with me at the time asked, “well what did she say, what’s the solution?”

I repeated exactly what this medical expert advised me to do –

“Put the baby in her carrier and put it on the top of the clothes dryer and turn it on.” That was it!? Twenty first century, hot off the press medical advice! My friend and I just dissolved into a puddle of laughter.

Throughout the ordeal, I have never before felt so enveloped by God’s love and His provision. Friends, family and our church family met our every need. At any time of the day or night.

One night in particular, when Amy’s medical team at Shands advised us to prepare ourselves that Amy had so much going against her, she likely wouldn’t live through the night.

I found myself alone with baby Carson. I felt backed against a wall – I cried out to the Lord!

Two of our dearest friends, came to stay with me through the night. They urged me to get some much-needed sleep in the event there were preparations to be made the next day.

After visiting a little while, I went to bed and slept deeply, “like a baby.” I had remembered something I had heard before, “Give your problems to God – He is going to be up all night anyway.” I had to lay it all at His feet because He was ultimately in control.

God answered my prayers and the prayers of the hundreds of friends literally around the world. He gave our family and me a MIRACLE.

Not only did Amy make it through the night, one baby step at a time, God pushed away death itself, and even the insidious effects of this horrible nightmare!

As Amy got stronger, we could actually talk on the phone and I would encourage her to keep fighting! Taking baby steps in faith.

A scripture that God had give me to tell her was:

Isaiah 43:1-2 But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob, 
he who formed you, Israel:
 “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
 I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters,
 I will be with you;
 and when you pass through the rivers,
 they will not sweep over you.
 When you walk through the fire,
 you will not be burned;
 the flames will not set you ablaze.”
HE is all of that for each one of us. I tell people that this experience was one that I would not wish on my worst enemy, but I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

Psalm 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength a very present help in trouble.”

Thank you for allowing me to share my heart with you today! My Lord is Amazing and I love to tell stories about what all He has done.


  1. Enjoyed our talk today and I just sat here and cried as I read your mothers post!!! I rejoice that God did not call you home because you have blessed me!!!

  2. I remember that day in May of 2002, crying in front of the computer as I read the latest email update. I was in such disbelief! This beautiful girl whom I had looked up to my entire childhood could not be dying! Every memory I had of you kept flashing through my head along with a subtle reassurance….”Don’t believe everything you read, Ginger. Everything is not as it seems.” And, through ‘groans and utterances that words cannot express’, I prayed for you, Amy….for many hours until I fell asleep. And, like your mother, I slept like a baby. Thank you, Mrs. Barbara, for sharing your story.

    • Thank you Ginger! Your words are treasures to me! I am overwhelmed many times when I hear stories of the prayers of the friends and family! It makes me get on my knees in Thanksgiving but also in petition for those around me suffering! Blessings to you!

  3. I remember that time. Emilie Grace had just finished 3yr preschool at F.U.M.C I didn’t know until later how GRAVE the situation was, I do remember praying very hard for you Amy. It’s hard to believe it’s been 9 years, in some ways it just seems like yesterday. Thank You Mrs. Griffin, for sharing this story.

    • I was honored that Amy asked me to share. I wish I had kept a journal, but I really had my hands full. I love ALL these precious granddaughters, but there is something about Carson that will always be very special. God really does redeem the times. Good to hear from you. I see your husband frequently at the conference center, but miss seeing you.

  4. Thanks for sharing, Mrs. Griffin! Your faith and example are inspiring. Amy and Katie have blessed me beyond measure! Thanks for sharing today!

    • Thank you for your kind words and for taking the time to reply. Katie has enjoyed you and your family immensly!

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