Candace Gaines: Heartbeat From Heaven
By Debbie Harper
The 700 Club
Dennis and Candace Gaines say there’s something really special about Christmas this year.
“I think this Christmas we really have a new understanding of the meaning of Christmas and God’s awesome power because we’ve seen it in a very realistic way,” Dennis said.
“For me, it’s just celebrating life,” Candace said, “just looking at her and reflecting back at what God has brought us through.”
Earlier this year, we brought you the amazing story of baby Grace, whose heart stopped for three weeks during pregnancy. Doctors saw no hope.
“My husband and I had been trying to have a child for about three or four years, and I had experienced previous miscarriages,” Candace said.
“This time it was a little different; we decided we were going to take God at his word. And we were going to trust Him no matter what,” Dennis said.
“I found out I was pregnant about six weeks or so. About my two month mark, I started cramping and experiencing spotting, and by the end of the day it had progressively worsened,” Candace said.
“The fact that she already had a ultrasound four days ago and had a heartbeat, I thought I would be able to do an ultrasound and allay her fears, but unfortunately that was not the case,” Dr. Daniel Terryberry said. “The ultrasound showed, you could see the fetus, but there was no cardiac activity. So I sent her over to the hospital, where they also came up with the same diagnosis of fetal demise.”
“It was at that point after receiving the bad news, we had to decide if we were going to accept it or not,” Dennis said.
“For some reason, this time around we just weren’t willing to accept what the doctor had said,” Candace said. “We really wanted this baby. So we began praying that weekend, and we were very confident that when we went back in Monday morning, we would have good news.”
But they did not hear the report they hoped for.
“And once again, there was no heart beat,” Candace said.
“The same situation, no fetal activity,” Dr. Terryberry said. “I was convinced that this was a pregnancy that was over. But Candace and her husband felt adamant that this pregnancy was going to continue.”
“We had a lot of family members that said maybe this is God’s will, and it’s not good to question that, but that just didn’t set right with me,” Candace said.
“We really trusted God and we believed this could happen,” Dennis said. “We went and bought baby clothes and started buying swings and that kind of thing. When we’re connected to God and we’re trusting Him, nothing is impossible.”
“We read the Bible constantly, we meditated on scriptures. I had 3x5 cards I carried around with scriptures and we just saturated ourselves in our environment,” Dennis said.
The doctor reluctantly agreed to give them more time. After two weeks they went for a third ultrasound. Things had gotten worse.
“Not only was there cardiac activity absent, but the baby had not grown; she was lagging behind, where the growth, not seven weeks, five weeks -- it was all consistent with what we know to be a miscarriage,” Dr. Terryberry said.
“This is the latest technology. Just seeing the monitor where the heart could have been beating, there was nothing there,” Candace said. “This time he actually showed us where a blood clot or sac had began to form under the fetus.”
“I said, this faith business that’s great the first two weeks, now it’s time to get down to business,” the doctor said. “They said they weren’t sure. I even told them, I’m sure, and the doctor across the street is sure. We‘re all sure that this pregnancy is going nowhere, but you have to be sure.”
In the face of impossible odds, Dennis and Candace refused to give up.
“We surrounded ourselves with Godly people. We surrounded ourselves with people who knew how to pray, and had faith in God and knew the power of prayer,” Dennis said.
Their pastor, Jacob Burke, supported their decision.
“Psalm 118:17, and I always go back to the word of God, 118:17 says, ‘I will live and not die, and declare the works of the Lord,’” Pastor Burke said.
“We refused to even say anything that was contrary to God’s word,” Dennis said. “The doctors would say, ‘there’s no heart beat.’ Well, maybe not, but there is a baby. There is a life, and we refuse to accept it, because I knew in my heart, that God had the final say so, this time.”
Three weeks passed, and the doctor became very concerned.
“My concerns were, and this happens, when a pregnancy fails and is not doing well, there could be infections, heavy bleeding and other complications from not going after it,” Dr. Terryberry said.
Time had run out and the baby had to be removed. The day the Gaines met with their doctor, Dennis had one last request.
“This time we were going to come in and make plans, because now, it was a question of her health,” Dennis said. “And I said, ‘you know, I don’t buy that God’s not going to move, I don’t buy it, let’s check one more time, let’s see.’”
“So I walk into the room and there was no apprehension on her face. I was the one who was apprehensive. And we do an ultrasound and there was a heartbeat, and it was nothing short of a miracle,” Dr. Terryberry said.
“There’s a heart beat, there’s a heartbeat. And I just, for some reason, I couldn’t look at the monitor. I remember looking over, glancing at my husband. He just had his hands up praising the Lord and I was just starring at Dr. Terryberry. He was just so excited. He’s like, ‘no, look at the monitor! There’s a heartbeat!’ And I‘ll never forget, there was 141 beats per minute, and all I could say was just, ‘Thank you Jesus. Thank you Jesus!’” Candace said.
“All I could do was praise Him and just thank Him for honoring His word,” Dennis said.
“Glee, pure joy, because we had just witnessed a miracle,” Dr. Terryberry said.
On April 2nd 2008, Grace Gaines was born and is a perfectly healthy baby girl.
“I think everyday has been Christmas for the last seven and a half months, for me I’d say,” Dennis said. “For me, it represents God’s awesome power that he cares about our situation.”
“It doesn’t do any good to know the Bible if you’re not going to apply it,” Candace said. “So for me, it was actually taking everything I had learned, everything I knew about God and His word, and actually walking it out.”
“I’m one speck in the entire existence, and he thought enough about our family and about honoring our faith to give her life where they said there was none,” Dennis said. “So for me, it’s knowing that God cares and seeing what He has done; He’s no respecter of persons - what He did for us, He can do for anyone.”
It’s “Baby’s first Christmas” at the Gaines’ home this year and little Grace is full of smiles.
“She’s always so giggly and happy,” Dennis said.
Dennis and Candace know that they are celebrating Christmas this year because God answers prayer.
Want to see how baby Grace is doing now? Read the update.
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