I knew I had to tell Lorraine exactly what the doctor had told me. So as I stopped the car outside her house for our usual goodnight kiss I just came out with it:
“Lorraine, I can’t have any kids”.
I knew she wanted children and that she took it for granted that the man she married would be able to deliver the goods. She would pray in her bedroom each evening; her mother, would peer into the bedroom to ask what she was doing.
“I’m praying for ‘Mr Right’ to come along”.
“Well here’s a fiver,” her mother replied. “Go down the pub and find him.”
But Lorraine had spent some time in pubs and found too many ‘Mr Wrongs’ in them. “In fact, God could bring him to the very door if he wished,” Lorraine insisted.
“Oh,” said her mum, “you mean the man of your dreams could be the window cleaner?”
“Er, no,” Lorraine replied. She knew of the man in question and was pretty sure that it wouldn’t be him.
Later, after some friends arranged a ‘blind date’, I came knocking on her front door and, soon afterwards, we were in love and making plans for the future.
So when I told Lorraine about my inability to provide her with posterity, I said, “Think about it and pray about it… Try to imagine being in your forties with no children.”
I spent some time in consternation – knowing I could lose Lorraine.
The next time I saw Lorraine, she brought up the subject.
“I hope you don’t mind,” she began, “but I had a chat with my mum about it.”
“Er... no, that’s okay,” I replied, a little unsure if it was a good idea or not.
“And my brother Allan happened to be visiting,” she continued, “so I mentioned it to him too, and his wife, and my sister, Carol, and her husband.”
“Oh. Right. I see,” I said, realising that by now Lorraine’s large, extended family – perhaps most of the town – probably knew my most intimate secret. But Lorraine had been praying for ‘Mr Right’, and not lots of little ‘Master Rights’, so I was relieved when she told me that she believed I belonged to her – whatever the future might hold.
“So what exactly is the problem?” she asked, as the tension began to ease.
I had been in hospital several times when I was in my early 20's, once with an illness that lasted for over two years, the doctors never found out the problem, but I knew I had a problem as I passed blood instead of urine. Some days I found it too hard to get out of bed. Pastors, Miss Fisher and Miss Reeves from a church in Birmingham, England prayed for me and I began to regain strength. I had a number of, let's say uncomfortable medical procedures; Mr J Cottam Consultant Urologist at Birmingham’s Dudley Road Hospital wrote: “I think one would be raising hopes on an impossible situation by suggesting that anything can be done to enable you to be a father.”
Meanwhile, Lorraine had been living as a jet-set fashion model at Venice Beach (where ‘Bay Watch’ was filmed) in LA, she never went to church, never thought about God. But one Monday morning in 1984, God revealed himself to her as her father. This was an amazing revelation to Lorraine who had never known her earthly father but now she had a heavenly father, she was a changed person and has never been the same since. She left the glamour of California and came back to live in Wolverhampton, England in a house provided by the local council, with her mom, which is where we met. We got married at in a church in 1988.
Six years passed, and more medical tests confirmed Mr Cottam's original diagnosis, that there was no hope of me becoming a father. However there is a scripture in the bible that tells us "Anyone who is among the living has hope" Ecclesiastes 9:4 We had hope and faith in God. Faith is an amazing gift, and shows itself in ways that are completely un-contrived. I was getting a lot of mail from abroad at that time and I started collecting the stamps and putting them in an album – After a few weeks of doing this Lorraine asked why I was collecting stamps, I said "because boys like collecting things, so these colourful stamps will come in useful when we get a boy."
Not long after that, we took our neighbours to hear the German evangelist, Reinhard Bonnke, preaching at a park in Birmingham, England. After Reinhard had preached, he explained that God had shown him there were various people in the gathering who had different ailments, including a ‘barren’couple. Somehow, I knew he was talking about Lorraine and me, even though there were thousands of other people there.
He then asked all the people he had previously mentioned to place their hand on the affected part of their bodies. With me standing right next to my neighbours, complying with that simple request was no easy task!
Some time later, Lorraine came downstairs one morning with what looked like a little bottle of diluted orange juice. Off we went to the Health Centre to get it tested for pregnancy hormones.
“Yes, it’s positive!” were the nurse’s first words. (It's amazing what they can do with orange juice these days.)
Lorraine cried and I laughed.
The baby was a hefty 9lbs 7oz and we named him Isaac. I had laughed at the news of his conception, not unlike the elderly Abraham who fell on his face laughing when he heard news of his impending fatherhood (Gen 17:17). Isaac means ‘laughter’ in Hebrew. I wrote a song for him called ‘Little Boy’, which contained some useful information that I would like him to know.
Isaac is now 12 years old, loves music, drums, x-box his mom, dad and God. Lorraine is still beautiful, and travels around doing make-overs and talks to ladies groups about inner beauty. I'm fit and well and run most days, I completed the London marathon raising money for Rwandan orphans, when I run I thank God for his skill as a healer.