Ray and I were at a gathering last night when an acquaintance whom I’ll call Thomas shared some family news. I loved his starting sentence, which he addressed to me: “You know about grandchildren . . .” He knew I would be a happy listener.
Thomas told us that he and his wife have only one grandchild. The child is 14 months old. However, their number of grandchildren is about to change. First, he said that his son and his wife, who are parents of the 14 month old, are expecting another baby in May. Then, he said that that son is a twin and that the wife of his twin brother is also expecting in May. One couple expects their baby on May 8, and the other couple expects their baby on May 9. Naturally, all are delighted.
His story reminded me of this picture from the Library of Congress which I have shared before.
This is the Library of Congress caption that goes with the photo:
Twins become mothers together for second time in less than two years. Washington, D.C., April 7 . Accustomed to doing practically the same things all their lives, these Washington twins, now mothers, have apparently decided that having their children together would certainly be in order. The mothers, Mrs. Eileen Moon, left, and Mrs. Kathleen Robie, last week gave birth to daughters to set a new record at Columbia Maternity Hospital. Mrs. Moon’s youngster, whom she named Carol, was born on March 29, while Mrs. Robie’s new daughter Nancy Lee first saw the light of day on April 1. This same thing happened in July 1937 when Mrs. Robie gave birth to a girl and a few hours later Mrs. Moon’s baby, a boy, arrived.
During our conversation, I asked Thomas how many children he and his wife have. He replied that their first child was a daughter and then they had three sons, including the twins. Thomas told us that their daughter was born in 1975. Many fathers in 1975 were still out of the loop when their wives gave birth. When his first child was 13 hours old, Thomas went to the hospital to meet her for the first time. Before going in to see his wife, he stood at the nursery window, looking at his baby girl. While standing there, he fell out in the floor with a heart attack. Thomas was 31 years old.
As Thomas lay in the emergency room, he believed that he would die and thought, “I will never get my hands on the baby.” Excellent treatment and 19 days in the hospital followed. Obviously Thomas survived.
Though he has had heart procedures from time to time in the last 48 years, Thomas has never had another heart attack. A few years ago, he was at a hospital having tests. As he walked down a hall, he ran into the physician who first saw him in the emergency room that night 48 years ago. The doctor had been fresh out of medical training in 1975. In fact Thomas’ friend, who had come with him to see the baby, asked that young man who came in to attend Thomas, dressed in jeans and a plaid shirt with a baseball cap in his pocket: “Are you a doctor?”
Thomas believed that he got excellent care, so he chose this young doctor as his physician and continued to see him until the doctor retired. Though no longer in medical practice, the doctor was still teaching when the two ran into each other at the hospital and he asked Thomas for permission to use his story as an example for his students.
I asked Thomas if his heart condition was hereditary. He told us about many members of his family who had heart disease. He also told us about a conversation he once had with an uncle, a conversation about every person’s need to be ready every day to meet our Maker.
That is one of the reasons to homeschool your children. Every day you have opportunities to help your children be ready every day to meet our Maker. It is the most important thing you will ever do for them.
This reminds me of a beautiful old hymn, written in 1900 by Charles H. Gabriel.
O That Will Be Glory
When all my labors and trials are o’er,
And I am safe on that beautiful shore,
Just to be near the dear Lord I adore
Will through the ages be glory for me.
O that will be glory for me,
Glory for me, glory for me;
When by His grace I shall look at His face,
That will be glory, be glory for me.
When by the gift of His infinite grace,
I am accorded in heaven a place,
Just to be there and to look on His face
Will through the ages be glory for me. (Refrain)
Friends will be there I have loved long ago;
Joy like a river around me will flow;
Yet just a smile from my Savior, I know,
Will through the ages be glory for me. (Refrain)
What comfort is in these words of Jesus:
“Do not let your heart be troubled;
believe in God, believe also in Me.
In My Father’s house are many dwelling places;
if it were not so, I would have told you;
for I go to prepare a place for you.
If I go and prepare a place for you,
I will come again and receive you to Myself,
that where I am, there you may be also.”