Saturday, August 1, 2015

Home Sweet Home Can = Struggles

We are home!!

We're all happy to be in our own home.  But it is HARD.

Transitioning from our life in the hospital is going to be tough.  We all want to get back to our own normal lives and that is not going to happen very quickly.  And it has been a long road.  We still need your prayers.  So many emotions and many pent up feelings.  We're REAL people.

Last night I was thinking of all the things that I am appreciating about being home.  Here are some things:

  1. Unpacking  completely and not just living out of my bags while I'm here a couple days.
  2.        My own bed!
  3.        Soft toilet paper and Kleenex!!!
  4.        Being able to do laundry in my own normal routine.
  5.        Home cooked food.
  6.        Going outside and enjoying my yard.
  7.        Being in the country.
  8.        No murders happening as close as my own driveway.
  9.        Peaceful quietness.
  10.        Taking a shower and actually feeling clean.
  11.        Wearing whatever clothes are comfortable.
  12.        Not wearing make up if I don't want to.
  13.        Listening to my music as loud as I want to.
  14.        Washing dishes.
  15.        Bacon!
  16.        Going barefoot.
  17.        No doctors!!!!
  18.        Birds singing.
  19.        Seeing butterflies.
  20.        Eating tomatoes from our garden.
  21.        Seeing my other children outside of the hospital.
  22.        Having my son home and doing better!!!!!!


Monday, July 27, 2015

Whew!

5 months of pain, fear, questioning, praying and more praying.  

Now, suddenly, they are telling us that Adam will probably come home on Thursday and I don't know where to begin.  So I'm wasting time writing a blog post!

Last week they took Adam off each of his four antibiotics one at a time for 24 hours until he was off of them all and his white count was NORMAL!!!  Praise God!

Over the weekend they started him taking all of his meds by mouth instead of through his feeding tube and he has been eating a little more each day, though not huge amounts.

Yesterday they did another CT scan and today said that they can remove 2 more drains and his feeding tube.  That procedure will be done tomorrow morning and we ask that you pray for him during that time.  That leaves only 3 drains and his biliary tube. WOW!

I almost don't know how to react to all of this and I'm pretty sure he doesn't either.  For months time has dragged on while we prayed and hoped for recovery and now it seems like BANG they will be sending him home.  

There are not enough words to say thank you to all of you who have been and will continue to lift us up in prayer.  We need them greatly!  

I will try to update everyone here from time to time on his progress but I will happily go back to blogging about recipes and crafts and other mundane stuff.  

God has taught me SO many things during this time of suffering in our family.  Thank you for going along on the ride with us and being our friends!!!


Saturday, July 25, 2015

God's Goodness

Today I want to praise God for His goodness, even though I'm not sure how to do it.

There are many ways I know that God is good. Here are just a few reasons:


  1. I know His character and He can be nothing but good.
  2. His Word tells me of His goodness.
  3. I've experienced it millions of times in my own life.
And God HAS been so good to us this week even amidst some rocky times.  But since I have to be real and honest here because so many people are watching us go through this, I have to say that right now it is HARD to experience His goodness in our lives.  That may not make sense to you if you have not gone through a really tough time in your life, but I'm pretty sure everyone has so maybe you can understand a little what I'm saying.

For one thing, when you are going through a really tough time you kind of get used to riding that "wave" of bad stuff.  You have to or you will fall apart in the midst of it.  Some of you have been riding that wave like we have for many months or even years.  Others are just getting in the ocean and see that wave coming.  

This week we had some tough times emotionally and some really good things happening all at the same time. Maybe it is just me, but my heart sometimes tries to toughen up when we start experiencing good things because I'm afraid it won't last and I will have to be strong for the tough waves to follow.   My humanness is showing.

When I read my devotionals today they were both reminding me that God is good.  Even the most specific things it mentioned were things that I am thankful for while being home.  

From Jesus Calling by Sarah Young, 

You can find God not only in beauty and birdcalls, but also in tragedy and faces filled with grief. Jesus can take the deepest sorrow and weave it into a pattern for good.  (change of pronouns to names mine)

Of course one of the verses to read with that was Romans 8:28 NLT

And we know that God causes everything to work together for THE good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. 
(capitalization mine)

It wasn't until I was an adult that I took note of  the important syntax of the word THE in that verse. It does NOT say that everything will work out good. (Besides, if that was the case it would have to work out well)  It says it will work out for THE good of the person who loves God and is living as His disciple.   I think I've talked before here about how what God sees as our good and what we think is our good may be two different things.  It is all about us getting to know HIM better and becoming more like HIM.

The other passage I read was from Come Away My Beloved by Frances J. Roberts.  From the reading A Perpetual Fountain of Glory on pages 48 and 49. Here is an excerpt:

But look to Me, and I will be your beacon in the night, and you will not stumble over the hidden things. You will walk in a way of victory though turmoil is on either hand, even as Israel marched through the Red Sea on a path My hand hewed out for them. Yes, it shall be a path of deliverance, and My Spirit shall go with you, and you shall carry the glad tiding of deliverance to people that sit in darkness and captivity.

Tarry not for a convenient time. The movings of the Spirit are never convenient to the interests of the flesh, and I shall engineer your circumstances to conform to My plan and My will. You will glorify Me; for My plan for you excels all other ways, and in the center of My will is a perpetual fountain of glory.

Do not doubt or hesitate, for I the Lord your God go before you. You already have My promise that the work I begin I am able to carry through to completion.

Yes, there is already laid up an exceeding weight of glory for those who go through with Me and determine to seize the prize. For I have wealth beyond your fondest dreams to bestow upon those who have left all to follow Me. All the glittering enticements of this transient life are as chaff in comparison, for God's gifts and calling never waver, and My giving is restricted only by the will and choice of the recipient.
__________
Lord, Jesus, , I cast myself at Your feet. Let me bathe them in tears, for my feet have been like lead. they have been weighed down with the cares of this life. I have been like one in a dream who seeks to run and is held paralyzed.
Set me free, Omnipotent Lord, and make me Your glad and willing bond slave. Free my feet and make them swift to do Your bidding. Loose my tongue to shout Your praise. Free my heart to love the lost with the great deep compassion of Jesus Christ. Free my affections and nail them to Your cross! Amen

Now, I realize that these are not Scriptures.  These are not really direct words from God to me and we need to be careful not to believe that words written by mere men ARE Scripture.  But the imagery in them speaks to me this week, even this day. 

Almost every dream I ever have has me frozen in my steps from being able to do the thing I wish to do in the dream.  I feel paralyzed just like the prayer at the end of the passage says.  That is sort of how I feel this week.  I want to praise God for the goodness of what He is doing in our hearts and in Adam's health but my fear of believing it to be permanent paralyzes me.  

Please pray with me that God would loose my tongue to shout His praise along with all of the other actions that the above prayer cries out to God to perform.  


Monday, July 20, 2015

We're Just Done

I'm writing today just to let you know how to pray.  Because we need your prayers.

Five months of someone you love being seriously ill and BEING the person who is seriously ill takes its toll on you.

As much as my family and I feel drained and worn out by this situation I cannot even begin to imagine how Adam must feel.

Please just pray for us to get through until he is well again.  Pray that we can physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually hang in there until the end of this nightmare.  And please concentrate those prayers mostly on Adam as he needs the strength to get through more than any of us.

THANK YOU!!!  We love you!


Saturday, July 11, 2015

The Great Rescue


Here is a picture of my basement right now:



It may not look very bad to someone else, but to me it is a mess.  Sure, we have all of the components to a wonderful family room--but they are all out of place and messy looking.

Last night I was feeling so frustrated and sad.  My life isn't really bad but it is out of place and messy looking.  The place where I long for all of my family to be is the place I merely visit on the weekends.  Yes, Adam is getting very slowly better, but the place where he longs to be seems still so far out of reach for him--to be home and working and leading a normal life.

All of the "furniture" of my life is nice and beautiful.  But it is a mess.  And that is how I feel.  Not trying to make you feel bad for me.  Not really complaining.  Just want to be understood.

This morning I was directed to 2 Samuel 22 which was a balm of comfort to me.  I will share with you some of the verses that helped me.  Maybe they can help someone else who is going through a tough time.

"The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the strength of my salvation, and my stronghold, my high tower, my savior, the one who saves me from violence. 

I will call on the LORD, who is worthy of praise, for he saves me from my enemies.
The waves of death surrounded me; the floods of destruction swept over me. The grave wrapped its ropes around me; death itself stared me in the face.

But in my distress I cried out to the LORD; yes, I called to my God for help.  He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry reached his ears.

Then the earth quaked and trembled; the foundations of the heavens shook; they quaked because of his anger. Smoke poured from his nostrils; fierce flames leaped from his mouth; glowing coals flamed forth from him. 

He opened the heavens and came down; dark storm clouds were beneath his feet.
Mounted on a mighty angel, he flew, soaring on the wings of the wind.
He shrouded himself in darkness, veiling his approach with dense rain clouds.

A great brightness shone before him, and bolts of lightning blazed forth.  The LORD thundered from heaven; the Most High gave a mighty shout. He shot his arrows and scattered his enemies; his lightning flashed, and they were confused. Then at the command of the LORD, at the blast of his breath, the bottom of the sea could be seen, and the foundations of the earth were laid bare.

He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters. He delivered me from my powerful enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me. They attacked me at a moment when I was weakest, but the LORD upheld me. 

He led me to a place of safety; he rescued me because he delights in me.

O LORD, you are my light; yes, LORD, you light up my darkness. In your strength I can crush an army; with my God I can scale any wall.

As for God, his way is perfect.  All the LORD's promises prove true. He is a shield for all who look to him for protection.

For who is God except the LORD?  Who but our God is the solid rock?

God is my strong fortress; he has made my way safe. He makes me as surefooted as a deer, leading me safely along the mountain heights. He prepares me for battle; he strengthens me to draw a bow of bronze. 

You have given me the shield of your salvation; your help has made me great. You have made a wide path for my feet to keep them from slipping. 

The LORD lives!  Blessed be my rock! May God, the rock of my salvation, be exalted! You hold me safe beyond the reach of my enemies; you save me from violent opponents.

For this, O LORD, I will praise you among the nations; I will sing joyfully to your name.

2 Samuel 22:1-20,31-37, 47,50 (bold mine)

I love the imagery of God seeing one of His children in distress and coming down out of heaven in great boldness and power to stoop down and rescue him.  Outside of the context of the passage, it just shows God storming down, clothed in His great power and majesty to blast into the situation and reach down to rescue the writer from deep waters. 

 Many of us are there right now.  The waters are swirling around us and we feel like we are going under in our weakest moments. We are feeling attacked by the situations in our lives where we feel exposed and vulnerable.  But God himself is waiting to lead us to a place of safety.  

I'm not sure that it is always a literal place of safety.  But He leads us to His presence, to Himself.  That is the only place to be truly safe.  

God loves us more than we can imagine.  He is willing to ride across the heavens to come to our aid and be with us.  Whether or not he changes our situation isn't relevant if we can just rest in His presence and feel the comfort of His shield around us. I'm trying to remember that.  


Sunday, July 5, 2015

In the Waiting




Sometimes it is extremely hard to put my thoughts down here without them sounding like I am feeling sorry for myself.  That is never my intention so I hope that it does not come across that way.

This long weekend has been difficult for many reasons. The hospital virtually shuts down except for nursing staff and minimal doctors because of the holiday so nothing could be done as far as physical therapy or procedures and Adam needed them both.  It seems like his physical therapist is the only one who can really motivate him to get out of bed and try to walk.  Instead of doing that, it feels as if he goes backwards every day that he doesn't get out of bed to walk.  There was also something that was causing him pain and discomfort that needed attention and we were told that it would be done tomorrow with a procedure since it was the weekend.  Thankfully, a fill-in surgeon took care of the problem at his bedside today and got him going in a positive direction and negated the procedure which he was sick of getting done anyway.  So, for that, we are thankful.

I never mentioned that a couple weeks ago our basement got flooded and our carpet, which has been wet so many times I can't count, needed to come up in order to keep us healthy.  Some dear cousins came and took up the majority of wet carpet but now our basement is a disaster of furniture strewn about, carpet  in some places, and glue that needs to be chipped off the cement floor.  Nothing that needs to get done but it still kind of smells like musty carpet when I walk into my house.

This morning our upstairs air conditioner, which we JUST replaced last fall because it had never worked well from the time we built our house, stopped working.

July 4th is the day that my dad died ten years ago so that day is always a bit hard to "celebrate" for me.  I kind of just wanted to crawl in a hole today and feel sad.  But I need to do laundry and pack again for the week and honestly, it is getting really old living out of a suitcase.

But God is good.

None of those things can really make me sad when I remember that.

On my way home from church I was driving alone because both of my girls had plans with friends for which I am SO thankful!!  A song came on the radio that I have never heard before and is probably a bit obscure. I want to share it here because this is the music of my heart and whenever God speaks to me through music I feel that someone else can surely benefit from it as well.  It is written by Greg and in this video it is sung by Greg and Janna Long.

I pray that you will be blessed by it as I was:







Monday, June 29, 2015

Make Something Beautiful

I've loved this song for a long time.  It has been appropriate for so many situations in my life.  This morning when it came out of my speakers from my ipod it reminded me that no matter what we are experiencing in our lives, God can make something beautiful out of it if we just submit ourselves to Him and lift up our open hands to let Him do the "making".  Here are the words you can listen to it below:

Enjoy!



Make Something Beautiful
Words and music by Laura Story and Ed Cash
copyright 2007 New Spring, Alletrop Music, 


When I'm at the point of breaking, at the place where I resign

And I'm at the stage of shaking my head as I look back on my life

When I'm halfway through the grieving, but not quite through the ache,

When I cannot see the ending or which road I'm supposed to take

All I know to do is lift my hands to You.


Take all of my life, all of my life,

And make something beautiful.

I open my hand, trusting Your plan.

Make something beautiful, so all will see

Your work in me as You make something beautiful.


When I'm tired of pretending and I can't recall my lines

Do I say I'm barely breathing or just say I'm doing fine?

I admit there is a yearning for the hurting to subside

But not at the risk of missing

What you're doing in my life.

And all I know to do is lift my hands to you.