This evening, I boarded the wrong bus and disembarked at the wrong stop. Yet, in what I believe to be God’s plan, I found myself standing right in front of the National University Hospital in Singapore, the very place where my third child, Joanna Olive, came into this world. It was the second time today that I was reminded of that significant moment, and those memories rushed back so intensely that I felt compelled to share this story.

Let’s rewind a few hours earlier. While submitting Joanna’s passport for renewal today, I vividly remembered an incident from her infancy. I recalled taking her tiny, ink-dipped fingers and pressing them against the passport application form when she was just three days old. If it weren’t for God’s grace, she might not be here today, renewing her passport and making a new thumbprint on the application form.

Our daughter, Joanna Olive, was born on March 2, 2019. On her very first day, she regurgitated the formula given to her and struggled with feeding. The doctors, however, didn’t express any concerns. We brought her home on the second day following her birth, but she continued to have feeding issues, slept excessively, hadn’t had a bowel movement, and kept vomiting. My intuition strongly suggested that something was amiss. In response, we applied for a passport, and miraculously, it was processed in just two days.

Another miracle transpired when we were able to book an airline ticket for an infant less than a week old. I still find it hard to believe that the airline system allowed it. On the seventh day of Joanna’s life, we boarded a plane from Singapore to India. My mind was racing with numerous worries, but my heart whispered a sense of calm over the tumult. I can still recall the peace that God filled me with, even in the face of uncertainty.

Fast forward to September 9, 2023. Joanna was admitted to the ICU at PSG Hospital in Coimbatore, India. After a battery of tests, the doctor informed us that she needed emergency surgery due to a blockage in her intestines. The surgeon, who initially scheduled the procedure for the next day, reappeared and conducted the operation that very night, on the eighth day of my baby’s life. After the surgery, the doctor explained that the blockage could have burst at any moment, posing a severe risk to her life if the surgery had been delayed. Joanna remained on a ventilator for two days and developed a skin infection during her time in the ICU. It was an immensely challenging period for our family, and we had to stay on for several more days until she was ready for discharge. Additionally, there was a follow-up surgery when she was three months old.

As I reflect on these events, I find myself overwhelmed with gratitude to God for His grace, which undoubtedly saved Joanna’s life. Had we hesitated or relied solely on local doctors, the outcome could have been far more dire. God had orchestrated our escape plan — from the expedited passport to the flight tickets and the presence of expert medical professionals.

Today, as I look at Joanna’s life and her thumbprints on her passport application, I cannot help but praise God for His divine intervention.






Share This Post