I have a confession to make. Today, I stole a Reader's Digest from the dentist's office. I justified it to myself because it didn't have a sticker on it saying "Property of the Dentist's Office" - but that's no excuse. I confess to my criminal activity, and I'm sorry. But I'd probably do it again.
What caused this lapse of moral judgement? I was holding Dee Dee, who had passed her dental exam with flying colours (and none of her usual screaming or whining - way to go, kid!), when I glanced over to the table next to the couch we were sitting on. The cover said, "Guess Who's Most Polite: Reader's Digest Tests Canadians' Courtesy." Nothing that earth-shattering or exciting, but I was curious to see if the Maritimes would score higher than the West Coast. (Moncton was the city with the highest score - way to go NB! - with Calgary and Vancouver tied for second.) As I was looking at the table of contents to find the pertinent page, I saw an article titled "Finding Baby Jessica... Again." All I saw were the words Baby Jessica and I thought, "Oh, the baby that fell down the well in Texas... I wonder how she's doing!" But when I turned to page 64 after looking at the results of the courtesy survey, I found a very different story... one I'd never heard before.
It told the story of three teenage boys heading home after school one spring day in 1986 in a rural community outside Victoria. They heard a strange sound coming from the ditch across the road and when they went to investigate, they found a gym bag sitting in the stream of water. Inside they found a soaking wet newborn baby girl. In a time before cell phones or even 911 in rural areas, they flagged down a passing car who went for help. When rescue personnel showed up twenty minutes later, the boys were told the infant was 2 or 3 hours old and may have been in the ditch for an hour or more. If she had been found ten or twenty minutes later, she likely would have died of exposure or drowned. She was dubbed "Baby Jessica."
The boys grew up, married and had families of their own. But every April 14th, they would raise a beer in her memory and wonder how she was doing.
Twenty years later, they received a phone call and heard a voice saying, "Hello. I'm Baby Jessica. Thank you for saving me." A week later they and their families got to meet her in person. She had been adopted into a loving family with a brother and sister, loved horseback riding, gymnastics, basketball and snowboarding, and was now training to be a paramedic.
I couldn't believe this story... that someone would leave their child in a cold, wet stream to die... that the boys would be at the exact right place at the exact right time to save a little life...
To me, it shows how depraved human beings can be in our selfishness... no doubt, this was a very broken mother to have abandoned her child like that... what had happened to her to make her take such an action? It also shows me how good God is, that He would arrange for those boys to find that innocent little girl and save her life, and provide her a loving family to nurture her and provide what her birth parents could or would not.
And I want to shout to the world how good God is, tell everyone the good news...
because that beautiful girl is my cousin.