I was in a big hurry Saturday morning, so instead of sitting down to eat my orange and eggs, I ate at the kitchen sink, looking out the window and watching the cows finishing their own breakfast. Most of the calves had lay down for their morning naps, but one was restless, lying down, getting up again, and wringing her tail. When she started lying down, rolling, and kicking at her stomach, Hubby hurried out to take a better look.
“It’s Anabelle’s calf, and she’s got enterotoxemia!” he hollered, grabbing his coat. “I’m going to the vet to get anti-toxin. Don’t let her lie down and keep her walking.”
I don’t know much about enterotoxemia except that it is frequently called overeating disease, seems to affect the calves whose mamas give the most milk, involves a strain of Clostridium, and is often fatal. As I hurried out to the pasture, I could see that our beautiful Isabelle’s abdomen was distended, and she seemed to be in great distress.
My cell phone rang. I answered, thinking it was Hubby, but it was Marilyn, a friend from church, calling to remind me of an upcoming brunch.
“Thanks, but I’ve got a really sick calf,” I said, my voice shaking.
“Okay, we’re going to agree in prayer. In Jesus’ name, this calf will live and not die and go on to have many calves in her lifetime!” Marilyn exclaimed loudly. “Now you tell her that!” There was a pause. “Well, if it’s a female, that is,” she added, with some trepidation.
“Oh, it is! Isabelle’s our best heifer calf out of our best cow,” I assured her.
We hung up. As I kept getting Izzy back up on her feet, I repeatedly told her (and her concerned mother) that she would live and not die. But the bloating and pain grew steadily worse. Finally I could not even get her back on her feet.
I was tempted to panic, but earlier that morning, I’d read these words of Jesus: “If two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you.” (Matthew 18:19) I will not fear, I told myself. If I were to give in to fear, it would be because I don’t believe God’s promises. That would be like saying that Jesus is a liar!
So instead of getting on the phone to tell Hubby to hurry before it was too late, I sang some praise songs. Sit her up, I heard. I managed to push Izzy so she was somewhat upright. Almost instantly, she seemed to relax. Just let her rest.
I did. Two or three minutes later, Izzy stood up, looked around her, and wandered over to inspect a rock. There was no bloating, no tail-switching, no kicking—a complete recovery!
When Hubby soon arrived on the scene, he was both incredulous and exultant. “You should blog about this,” he said. “It’s a real miracle!”
“Do you think anybody will believe me?” I replied.
Isabelle, right, using Glory as a pillow. Their coats are glistening wet from one of several spring squalls we've had today.