Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Father's Song

I have worked in Labor & Delivery for over three decades and been in about 2800 deliveries.  During a delivery, we of course take care of the laboring mother.  We also care for the new baby when he or she arrives.  But we also must take care of the daddies.  It's often hard to predict how a new daddy will respond to the delivery, so we keep a close eye on them, as well.  Two daddies stand out particularly in my mind.

The first was one of the most attentive daddies I have ever seen.  His intent was clearly to be as supportive every minute of his wife's labor as he could possibly be.  At delivery, that particular physician liked to have the delivery table up as high as it could go.  This meant I couldn't easily see the daddy on "his side" of the table.  The healthy, beautiful baby was born and placed into its mother's waiting arms. I looked over to check on daddy, but I didn't see him.

I had to walk around to that side of the bed and then I saw him on his knees on the floor.  I asked if he was alright, and he looked up at me with tear-stained cheeks.

"Yes," he replied, "I just wanted to thank the Lord for a healthy baby."

I was so touched that the first thing this daddy wanted to do after seeing his baby was to get on his knees and thank the Lord!  What a great way to start the role of fatherhood.

This week, I encountered another -- though different -- thankful father.  

This was not my patient, but I was in the delivery helping my co-worker.  We had just come on for our shift, so these new parents were basically strangers to us.  The baby, another healthy, beautiful baby, was delivered and placed on the mother's tummy.  The nurse then  took the baby to dry her, put on her identification bands, and take her footprints.  When she finished, she handed the baby to the daddy.

Immediately, he began to sing to his daughter.  He sang hymn after hymn to her.  And not just one verse, but all of the verses to each hymn.  He must have sung ten or fifteen hymns to her, softly as he rocked her back and forth.

It reminded me of this verse in the Old Testament:

Zephaniah 3:17
"The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, He will joy over thee with singing." 

That was what this daddy was doing. . .he was joying over his child with singing.  

The Lord joys over us with singing, too.  He loves us so much and He rejoices in our love for Him that it brings a song to His lips.  We can't hear that song right now, because we aren't tuned in to the right frequency.  But there will be a day when we will hear His voice as He joys over us with singing, as He sings His love to us.
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