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This is a very strange picture to lead with.

Especially since this is an email announcing the birth of our third child. But here's why we chose it:

The picture is the exact view from Kim's hospital bed.

This is what she saw for four days as she recovered from an emergency c-section. She commented that it brought her such joy amidst the pain and general Blah-ness of the hospital vibe to look out her door and see just that little sliver of a decorated Christmas tree in the hallway.

She considered this tiny GLIMPSE of normalcy to be a direct gift from God. 

God orchestrates our life to be like that sometimes, doesn't He? It's not always butterflies and cupcakes and sunny beaches. The sting of pain, death, and suffering sometimes seems so near at hand. The brokenness of a fallen world is not hard to see in the foreground. 

And yet, as the redeemed, our hearts focus on King Jesus. And as we peer out the door, around corners and past the dullness, there is always hope. There is always something on the horizon to bring a fresh smile, a needed laugh, and rest for our soul. 

Christ is constantly ministering to His children. 

Even with a half-view of an artificial tree in a sterile hospital hall.  Praise Him!  

And now on to our big news...welcome to the world, Finnegan Wesley Starkey! 

Finnegan was born last Tuesday, December 19, at 2:01pm. He weighed 7lbs.11oz.  

Here's the abridged tale of the past eight days, told mostly with pictures:
Above: PRE-BIRTH... Kim went in Tuesday morning (12/19) for a 'routine' induction. Both of our moms were with us. As you can see, we were all pretty relaxed for most of the time.

These photos were taken about 1:30pm.  
Above: THE BIRTH... I (Peter) went to the waiting area to talk to the moms. I was out of Kim's room for maybe 3 minutes. When I came back into the room, there were about 7 nurses and the doctor was with Kim with a "this is not good" look on her face. 

Kim's water had broken, and immediately Finnegan's umbilical cord dropped down and became pinched between his head and Kim's cervix. This is called a prolapsed cord, and it cuts off oxygen to the baby's brain and creates an emergency situation. 

More doctors rushed into the room, and they ordered a c-section at 1:55pm. At 2:01pm, Finnegan was born. 

It was a very scary six minutes for me. And yet somehow Kim was smiling and cheerful throughout!  

Spina Bifida
This is the spina bifida lesion on Finnegan's lower back (before surgery).  
Finn had surgery on Thursday (12/21) to close the lesion; this picture is after surgery. 
Some Obligatory Cute Baby Pictures 
How have we seen God work this past week? Let us count the ways!! 

Gobs and Gobs of Gratitude
  • Despite the details of the delivery being unexpected to us, God had it all planned. Kim is healthy, and Finnegan arrived safely. Praise His holy name!
  • The surgery went even better than expected - praise His holy name!
  • Follow-up tests have all been positive. Finnegan's brain is not retaining fluid, and so far he does not need a shunt. Praise His holy name!
  • Kim was discharged on 12/23 and got to be home with us for Christmas - a huge answer to prayer. Praise His holy name!
  • Finnegan has been moved to a private room in the NICU. He might get to come home Friday 12/29 - earlier than expected. Praise His holy name! 
  • That Kim would heal from the c-section quickly with no infection. 
  • For Finnegan's many follow-up appointments with specialists; that there would not be major developmental problems from the spina bifida.
  • Specifically for Finn's feet. To the naked eye there seems to be some issues with their shape and positioning, but they tell us it's far too early to draw any conclusions from this. 
We want to end this year by saying Thank You for another great year of faithful partnership. 
It is a joy to walk together on this journey, and we pray that you have seen many glimpses of His grace - both big and small - during this Christmas season. 

We always like to hear from you, so please write to us with any family updates and/or prayer requests.  

We would love to celebrate the 'small slivers of Christmas tree' that you've been able to see from your vantage point, wherever that may be... "to the praise of His glorious grace!"

IF YOU have pledged an annual gift once per year in December, please do so before December 31 to ensure that it is tax deductible for 2017. 

IF YOU would like to give an extra end-of-year gift, you can use the link below as well.  

Thanks for your faithfulness!
Online Giving
Copyright © 2017 Peter & Kim Starkey, All rights reserved.

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