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Lord, .... please open the ears of Joseph   PDF  Print  E-mail 

 

“I thought it good to declare the signs that the Most High God has worked for me. How great are these signs and how mighty are his wonders!” Dan 4: 2-3

 

On 5 May 1996 our home and hearts were filled with joy and laughter when Laurice my wife gave birth to our beautiful son, Joseph. Now Christine, our 4- year-old daughter, would at last have a brother to play with and we a son we had long hoped for.

However shortly after birth, the baby turned yellow. The color rapidly deepened and we rushed Joseph to one of the leading hospitals in Cairo. The Paediatrician diagnosed him as having neonatal jaundice with significant hyper-bilirubinaemia. Our 3-day-old son was put in an incubator to receive phototherapy. After a few days of treatment the level of serum bilirubin came down to a reasonable level. We thanked the Lord and took the baby home and thought that everything was fine.

As days passed by, we noticed that the baby did not show any normal response to sounds made around him and neither did he interact to his surroundings. He didn‘t cry, blink, or show any facial expression as a normal baby would. We knew that high levels of bilirubin could destroy the auditory nerves and cause deafness. Willing him to hear we constantly made noises, clapped our hands close to his ears and played loud music, but to our disappointment baby Joseph did not respond at all. When he was two months old, we took him for a formal hearing checkup at a specialized Pediatric Audiology Centre. Our worst fears were confirmed when we were told that Joseph suffered from profound deafness i.e. a loss of more than 80 decibels in both ears.

Tears filled our eyes and deep sorrow overshadowed our hearts. Being a medical doctor, I began researching medical libraries and textbooks for any solution that might possibly help. Unfortunately all hope died, the more I read about the condition the more depressed and hopeless I felt. Smiles and laughter left us forever. We took Joseph to the most eminent Paediatricians and Audiologists in Egypt, but to no avail. The prognosis they gave us depressed us further because in their opinion since he suffered from profound deafness it would be almost impossible for him to learn to speak or even to read. Furthermore, they anticipated that Joseph would be mentally retarded with associated impending seizures. They could not prescribe any  medicine or advise any intervention.

Dreams of a bright future for our son lay crushed at our feet, only tragedies and difficulties awaited him. The future looked grim and bleak. As parents we cried and cried helpless tears, till no tears were left.

All doors remained stubbornly shut in front of us, except for one, the door of heaven. We started to pray and pray in our desperation. We sent prayer requests to many churches, friends and prayer groups in Egypt and abroad as well. Some weeks later, while we were in a taxicab on our way to see another famous Audiologist, I started to pray for my son. I said “Lord, please open the ears of Joseph just once to be able to hear just one word: “Jesus”. Lord, please open the lips of Joseph just once, to be able to utter just one word “Jesus”. I knew for sure that the wonderful name of “Jesus” was able to make all the difference!

While I was praying, suddenly, a verse from the Bible came into my heart in a live and fresh way that illuminated and thrilled my whole inner being. It was as if I was hearing these words for the first time in my life. They were the words of our Lord Jesus in John 5:25

“Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live”!

 Immediately an extraordinary divine faith filled me. I said: “Lord, I believe that the hour has come when the dead hearing nerve cells and centres will be able to hear your quickening voice. Master, though these cells are already dead, they will revive”. I was filled with a miraculous faith at that moment and I immediately told my wife that our son was going to hear normally. Few days passed and nothing happened. Then my wife received a call from a close Christian friend to encourage her faith. After that call, Laurice was confident that the Mighty Lord would do a miracle so with expectancy she went into Joseph’s room. Hearing her footsteps for the first time in his life, Joseph started to cry and then he blinked his eyes in response to her sounds. She clapped her hands and Joseph started to cry again. Hallelujah. To God be all the glory.

From that moment on Joseph could hear and respond to sounds, he continued to respond to external stimuli and continued to grow normally. He achieved all the milestones of development even before his age mates! The gloomy picture the doctors had painted was all gone.

Joseph is now a healthy normal 7 year old and enjoys very normal hearing and speech. Moreover, the Lord in his mercy blessed Joseph with a fantastic gift of music! He is a talented keyboard player. I know from experience that we have a wonderful Almighty God. Nothing is too difficult for him. “He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” His Word is true and His promises endure forever and ever. To Him be glory to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

Dr.Sameh Nassif is a specialist physician from Egypt. Together with his wife Laurice, and children Christine and Joseph he lives in Muscat, Oman. He has been working in Oman for the past 6 years.


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