Give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34
I have so much to be thankful for, not just for healing, but for the everyday, little things I get to appreciate.
Today is Matthew’s 16th birthday. Wow! Where does the time go? There is something unique about Matthew’s birthday that most people don’t know. He was born on the same day as his gram. So happy birthday to Matthew and to Juli! Last weekend he went hunting with his dad and got his first buck. He’s not only a good football player but a good shot too!
I have some other reasons to be thankful too.
It’s been two weeks since I finished my radiation treatments. I will return for a check up in one month and an MRI/doctor visit at three months. As I come off the steroids I am feeling better. My sleep is improving, my appetite is normal and my emotions are stabilizing.
I was under the impression that in two weeks my brain would significantly recover and be restored. After further conversations with my doctor, he explained the process actually takes several months. The three-month MRI will become our baseline image for future reference. That MRI might actually appear worse than my original one as the cells/fluid can overshadow the original lesions and make it hard to confirm my progress. At about six months we will have a much clearer image of the health of the brain. I am choosing to believe that God can cleanse and restore my brain much more rapidly and that I have no reason for concern or anxiety, but rather every reason to give thanks that I am healed. Eventually, the scans will reveal what I already know to be true.
On Friday, I had my follow-up visit with my oncologist, Dr. Khan. Dr. Khan is recommending that we wait for at least 30 days and possibly longer to determine if chemotherapy will be essential. Since the only active disease that can be found was in my brain, he would like to see if my tumor markers will return to normal.
You might remember that last month my markers dropped after only 2 treatments. This leads us to believe that the lesions were very susceptible to the radiation and the treatment has successfully destroyed the disease. In addition, all of my other tests indicate that there is no other active disease anywhere in my body. If these assumptions are true, my markers should drop rapidly and return to normal.
But here is the best news!
At the very least, I will not begin chemotherapy for another 30 to 60 days. (Happy Holidays!) At the very best, it could be that I would escape chemotherapy completely! That’s right! If my numbers are normal and remain there, we will most likely proceed without further chemotherapy.
During my first visit with Dr. Timmerman (the neurosurgeon) I asked him if there was anything i needed to do during radiation to improve my results. He told me to eat well, exercise and get lots of sleep! I believe that is the treatment plan I am to pursue at this time.
So this leads me to ask for more prayer.
- For my brain to be completely cleansed and healed. That I would have the evidence of this healing through my improved eyesight and general good health.
- For my cancer markers to reflect that healing has occurred and for them to drop rapidly and remain stable at the normal level from now on.
- For me to cooperate and to be both willing and able to eat well, exercise and rest.
- For chemotherapy to be unnecessary for my full recovery and restoration.
I’m hopeful you won’t mind me asking for some additional prayer for my family, friends and even co-workers. It feels like those around me are also in need of extra protection and healing of their own. Here are some specific requests –
- Matthew injured his should in the middle of football season and missed six weeks of play. He had just been cleared for the final week and was looking forward to the opportunity to finish the season with some time on the field. During practice of the final week, he took a weird fall and landed right on the same shoulder. This time the injury seems worse and will require weeks of physical therapy (again) and of course he didn’t get to play. I would like to see a speedy recovery and no additional injuries.
- Mark had a bad wreck yesterday and most likely totaled his truck. A young driver ran a red light and Mark t-boned him at about 50 miles per hour. Thankfully, he saw him coming at the last second, slammed on his brakes and veered to the right. As a result the blow was less direct and Mark was propelled off the highway and into some type of ravine. Everyone walked away and the other driver was cited. Please pray for Mark to have no injuries and to recovery from the crash quickly. Mark’s truck is like his traveling office. He needs it in order to do his work. Please pray that we have no issues with the insurance process, that we receive a fair and favorable settlement and that we will quickly be able to restore our vehicle so that Mark doesn’t have to invest tons of time and energy in securing a new truck.
- My father-in-law (Wayne) had by-pass surgery this summer. His recovery was a bit slow, but recently he had experienced an improvement in his energy and was doing well. A couple of days ago, he was admitted to the hospital again, this time with congestive heart failure. He is responding well to the treatment and we are hopeful he will return home today. Please pray for his full recovery and for my mother-in-law who is the primary care giver of the family. They had planned to come to Dallas for thanksgiving. We haven’t been able to see them in months and we are excited about the chance to be together. I don’t know if they will be able to come if granddaddy doesn’t experience a significant improvement.
- There are also several other things going on that are more private in nature. It feels like there are battles everywhere we turn. I’d love for you to pray that a hedge of protection would extend widely over everything and everyone that is a concern to us. I’m praying God would confuse the enemy and cause him to turn upon himself. As we rest, God battles on our behalf.
I recognize that all around me are others struggling with their own health and family concerns. Our “humanity” makes us susceptible to all kinds of weakness. Yet our “divinity” makes us susceptible to overcoming. It is God in us that gives us the advantage over every circumstance.
I am reminded of Dr. Caroline Leaf’s strategy for overcoming from Pink Impact. (You can click here to order a copy of her full teaching from the conference. Check out all of her content – it is so good!)
When we thank Him – He listens to us.
When we praise Him – He’s by our side.
When we worship Him – He moves on our behalf.
If you are struggling with illness, then watch this teaching on youtube. Dr. Leaf empowers us to use our thoughts to align ourselves with God’s plan for our health.
So let’s prepare our hearts with thanksgiving! We can be overflowing with thanksgiving!
I love you,