December 31, 2008
GOD I PRAISE YOU! THERE IS NO ONE LIKE YOU!!! WORTHY! WORTHY! WORTHY! WORTHY! WORTHY! Thank you Lord for bringing us through the fire, through the waters, through the flood safely to the other shore and into a new land! Amen! Amen! Amen!
Close your eyes because the video doesn't match very well and just let the words sink in! This is Kelanie Gloeckler and her CD Brave New Worship is awesome!!
December 31, 2008
December 29, 2008
Yesterday morning during our bible study we looked at the BE….Attitudes, those characteristics that Jesus said we should have if we want to be blessed. We had fun as a family discussing what all this means. I particularly like how the Message puts it.
1-2 When Jesus saw his ministry drawing huge crowds, he climbed a hillside. Those who were apprenticed to him, the committed, climbed with him. Arriving at a quiet place, he sat down and taught his climbing companions. This is what he said:
3"You're blessed when you're at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.
4"You're blessed when you feel you've lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.
5"You're blessed when you're content with just who you are—no more, no less. That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought.
6"You're blessed when you've worked up a good appetite for God. He's food and drink in the best meal you'll ever eat.
7"You're blessed when you care. At the moment of being 'care-full,' you find yourselves cared for.
8"You're blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.
9"You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family.
10"You're blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God's kingdom.
11-12"Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don't like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble.
I really could identify with the verses 3 & 4. Man, if I could tell people one thing it is that the Word of God is true! So true! When all there is to go on is God you can really see him move! He embraces you, he surrounds you and delivers you out of situations that would crush most. God is reliable! He is real!
He has so much love and grace and mercy that he’s just bursting, he can’t help himself…he has to give it! It has nothing to do with our deserving it! It’s about God!
Verse 5 is something I’m still learning. Not to worry what others think of me and just be who I am in God. I don’t want to be swayed or moved by anyone’s opinion.
Verse 6 makes me think of a vision I had once of a long table stretching so far you can’t see the end of it and it was set with the finest of place settings. But the table was empty, there was no one interested enough to sit down and eat and drink.
A few days before Danni passed away I had a this same vision of the table only she sat across from me in a beautiful white garment with a sparkling crown on her head.
Jesus sat at the head of the table and we all held hands. Twice in the day this vision came to me out of the blue. I told no one of what I had seen and at the end of that day I was led to pray with Danni, it was one of her last cognizant moments. She couldn’t talk much but as we prayed she said, “Table”.
I asked her if she saw a table and she replied, “Yes”. I asked her if she was sitting at a table and she said, “Yes”. She then proceeded to say, “He’s going to shut up the table,” and I said, “No! The table must be filled with souls!” and she agreed.
The Lord says to pray to him while he can be found (PS 32:6) and that he prepares a table before us in the presence of our enemies (PS 23:5). Folks this table exists and it there for all who call upon the Lord to eat and drink of him. My prayer is that he makes us all hungry and thirsty for his righteousness and allows us to see what deliquesces are put before us .
Verse 7 speaks of sowing and reaping. Verse 8 speaks of the work of the Spirit in our hearts and minds. In verse 9, Jesus is saying you are all of one body, GET ALONG! (This is my paraphrase).
Verses 10, 11 and 12 have to do with the persecutions that we WILL suffer on his behalf and the rewards that come with doing so. I think that if there are no persecutions in our lives we aren’t getting it right! It may be time to go to the table with God and say, "What is it that needs to change in me." And, "Lord change me!"
When you pray this way, expect tribulation to come to you but don’t fear it rather embrace it as the tool in God’s hand that is doing the work in you. Praise him for it! Count it all joy, not that you have to be all giggly about it but have peace during the trial knowing that God has answered your prayers and you will be forever changed! Amen!
December 27, 2008
It’s been a month today since you’ve gone to be with Jesus. I sure miss you but I’m glad you’re home safe. A lot has happened since you’ve been gone and a lot just went back to normal.
Jessi and Atlee are doing fine; they spent all day after Christmas building this roller coaster toy while Matt and I put a new storm door on the front of the house. So many people came to see you and help us that the old hinges just couldn’t take it anymore! What a wonderful situation! We had fun working together, Matt and me.
I hope you don’t mind I went through your room and through your clothes and got them ready for someone who is in need just like you requested. We also went and ordered you a beautiful memorial stone that the man will come and install in the spring.
A boy died in our community, it was a sledding accident. His parents are friends of mine and we went to school together, if you haven’t met him maybe you could look him up and show him around I’m sure you have heaven down pat by now. Or maybe not it’s I imagine it's probably a pretty big place.
Your room is a mess, bags of clothes here and there and your pictures are still sitting out. I hope you’re not upset with me but I read your journal. I was so blessed by the gift you left me. The gift of your words, words of thankfulness and kindness and concern for others. It’s so neat to see your hand writing.
I kept your lamby slippers you loved so much for me and when I wear them I feel you near.
It’s so hard to believe you are gone. My sweet Sharky. I have so many memories of you making me laugh. They overshadow the dark and painful ones; it seems they are connected to them for the sole purpose of helping me to get through them.
You can never know how you impacted my life and so many others. Now you are part of that great “cloud of witnesses” the word speaks of in Hebrews 12:1. I want to throw off those things that hinder like you did and finish the race before me with perseverance. You are such an inspiration to me. Now whenever things get hard I know that I will make it just like you did. Turning to God, never giving up, and trusting in Him with my whole heart in any and every situation I encounter.
I press on just like you would have if the situation had been reversed and my life is forever changed and strengthened because of the work I saw accomplished in you.
Life is quiet now. I’ve been planning that trip to the beach we were going to take when you got better, Lord willing we should be able to go for your birthday. Now you’re better so we can go and I know you’ll be with us there.
I’m doing fine, just like I told you I would. I love you Danni. I’ll see you soon.
December 21, 2008
The day before Danni died many things transpired; one thing I remember is that she began to sing. Her song was beautiful. Through the medication fog she sang, “Haw-weh-ooo-yah, haw-weh-ooo-yah, haw-weh-ooo-yah,” over and over she sang these words, pure hallelujahs from her heart to her King.
This morning as I lay in bed thinking of her I heard her sing again, clear as the wind whirling around the house, “haw-weh-ooo-yah, haw-weh-ooo-yah,” I can hear it in my heart as I write. I feel her close to me today, I know she’s gone but she’s close. Pure and sweet, I hear her and tears of joy streamed down my cheeks.
I know where she is, I don’t have to worry.
I was thinking about Luke 21 this morning. “When will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?” was the question the disciples had for Jesus on this particular day (Luke 21:7). He answered them with several things to look for such as:
Those coming in his name claiming, ‘I am he, and, ‘the time is near.’ (vs. 8) Revolutions, nations rising against nations, kingdoms against kingdoms, (vs. 9-10), great earthquakes, famines and pestilence in various places, fearful events and great signs from heaven. (vs. 11)
We will be persecuted and betrayed by close family members, we will be witnesses for him and he will give us words to speak to those who do these things to us, men will hate us because of Jesus but we will not perish if we stand firm. (Paraphrase of Luke 21: 12-19).
Jerusalem will be surrounded by armies and scripture says “…you will know that it’s desolation is near…” It goes on to instruct us as to what we should do at that time…FLEE to the mountains! (vs. 20-21) There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars, we will be perplexed at the roaring and tossing of the sea, men will faint from terror. (vs. 25-26)
What does this have to do with Danni’s song? Look at verse 28 of Luke 21 “When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” I love that! Danni sang when she saw her redemption drawing near.
I wonder if she saw Jesus coming on the clouds for her, if she heard the angels singing and sang along with them. For all the doom and gloom of this scripture, there is hope, hallelujah! There is hope!
Later on in that same scripture Jesus warns us to be careful not to let our hearts be weighed down with “dissipation (breaking up and scattering by dispersion, dissalolute: indulgence in sensual pleasure, useless or profitless activity), drunkenness and the anxieties of life..” because “it will come upon all who live on the face of the whole earth.” (vs. 34-35)
Jesus last words in this scripture are this in verse36, “Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
I’m not even going to pretend that I know where we are in the scheme of things but these last words ring in my ears like the sweet “haw-weh-ooo-yahs” of my daughter and I want to be able to stand before the Son of Man (JESUS) with as pure a heart as she did.
Father, help me not be off my guard for one minute and when you come I pray you would find faithfulness in me, I pray for myself and all I love that we would be able to escape all that is about to happen. Thank you Father that you delivered Danni safely home! I praise you! I praise you!
Be with us and make us very aware of your presence with us today. Where I have sinned, I ask your forgiveness and that you would cleanse me with your precious blood once again. For those who don’t know you but are called according to your purpose I pray for salvation to come quickly to them so that they may be watchful as well.
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, I sing with Danni, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah….come quickly Lord Jesus! Amen.
December 16, 2008
I feel like a blank page eagerly awaiting the Master’s pen, I try to busy myself with Christmas preparation but everything seems meaningless. I feel as if I’m awake and the whole world is asleep maybe it’s because everyone is sleeping here. I’m stirred in my spirit.
An old lady came up to me in the store I was in today and asked me to tell her the way to get out of there. I wasn’t sure where she wanted to go and she seemed confused, was she all alone? What was she doing out by herself? I pointed her to the nearest exit and she muttered something as she walked away from me toward the doors to the outside.
Why do thoughts of her stir me when I should be sleeping? Was she an angel in disguise? Did I do enough for her? Why did she pick me? I had my back to her, she couldn’t see if I was good or bad, kind or cross. Did I entertain an angel unaware?
I feel the presence of God as I write. He’s upon me, what is it he wants to say? What does he want me to write?
How many times have I had encounters with people who need my help but I was too busy to pull myself away from my selfish desires? Isn’t that one of the “biggy” commands that Jesus left us with? The command to love our neighbor as ourselves is what I’m referring to.
Angel or human that lady was a divine encounter today, those are the happenings that make you wonder. They grab your attention and make you think inside. It’s like God shakes you and says, “Wake up! Get your focus off of yourself! Be ready, you never know what I will require and what moment I will require it! Be ready!”
The world seems to be on a downward spiral. Take one look at the news and you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see that maybe, just maybe, a higher power is trying to get our attention. There are more important things in life than our favorite TV shows, just the right clothes or foods.
What can I do? What is it that you want me to do, God? I feel so different inside, everything has changed for me. I’m so tired of the mundane do this do that that doesn’t make a hill of beans. Frivolous busy work, I’m sick to death of it. We run here and there like headless chickens trying to accomplish who knows what to live up to the expectations that someone else has put on us.
You have to mourn this way; this is what mourning looks like. You have to go to church this way and do what is expected because that’s what it looks like. You have to do, do, do because that’s what being a follower of Christ is, that’s how it’s done.
Martha ran around all concerned about the details, she couldn’t figure out why Mary wasn’t responding to her expectations! Jesus said to her in Luke 10: 41-42…”Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better and it will not be taken away from her.”
In all this busyness did it ever occur to us that if we would take time to sit at Jesus feet and be totally caught up with him and his word that we would have a far more peaceful and productive life?
What if just for one day we stopped the crazy busyness and defied the expectations of everyone. There is no doubt it would be a fight, we would have to radically focus on God. No time is always the excuse but all we have is time and it’s swirling down like a sink full of water with the drain plug taken out.
We are headed at breakneck speed for eternity and all we can think about is how to make ourselves acceptable to the rest of the human race all the while ignoring the Creator of the Universe who holds all of time in his hand.
Is anyone else awake? Does anyone hear me? Maybe this is just for me.
How do we live life here on earth knowing that eternity awaits us? How can the insignificant things of this world possibly hold our attention when the God of the Universe stands face to face with us?
I feel so small. I’m so foolish. Forgive me Lord.
My meeting today with the little old lady was a sign from heaven; “LOOK UP” said the sign. “There’s more to life than this, don’t let man’s expectations take from you the ONLY THING THAT’S NEEDED, THE BETTER CHOICE.
Take the seat at the feet of the one who holds eternity in his hands. He can show us how to do the will of the Father if only we will stop and take time to let him.
December 11, 2008
I sat in Danni’s room with my bowl of cereal; the light from the window shone through my bowl and left diamonds of light for our cat to chase around the room. I know, cheap entertainment, but it made for an amusing breakfast.
The house is quiet, my mom has gone home and life has returned to normal, whatever that is and I can’t help thinking about the future, what does it hold for me? What will God have me to do next? I can think of a million things I need to do here at our home but what does he want me to do, what is it he’s calling me to, where is he working?
I want to be like Jesus and work where I see my Father working, but what? Where? I’m seeking him for the answers to these questions.
Memories of Danni are everywhere; she’s still here in the objects she used, in the things she created and in our hearts. She was so precious. I read a psalm that made me think of her today. I could see the body of this man who was speaking, David; wasting away…he is literally dying here. He speaks of his sin being the reason for his condition but I don’t believe that part is like Danni. Psalm 38 is what I’m referring to.
I am amazed at how it so accurately describes the death process I saw firsthand in Danni. I wonder did she feel the way David did in verses 21-22? O Lord, do not forsake me; be not far from me, O my God. Come quickly to help me, O Lord my Savior.
What a privilege to be there to bring her into the world and be there when she left, at her side stroking her arm and praying for her. I remember she opened her eyes a bit to look at me and then the next time I looked they were closed and her body took two more breathes but her spirit had already gone.
I heard in me, “Mom, I’m gonna go now,” I said in my spirit, “Go ahead, I’ll see ya later, go and be at peace.” That was the end. I shall never forget that holy moment. I took the oxygen off of her body and shut off the machine. I wept… all those months of struggle came out in a single moment. It was so surreal to see her laying there lifeless.
I kissed her on the cheek several times as I had before in life, she was out of pain the fight was over and she had come into a marvelous light. I am so happy for her. I am so blessed by God’s answer to our prayers. I know this sounds so strange coming from a mother who has lost her child but you never can know these feelings until you’ve been there.
I had 19 years to know her, what a blessing. Don’t take your loved ones for granted, invest time and love into them so you can have a life of no regrets. Don’t hold grudges against your loved ones, life is too short. Love them, love them, love them, no matter what!
Danni said in her journal, "I was so young and dumb. But I swore that I knew best...yeah right...I'm sorry to my mom the most...Ugh, I was an idiot. I can't believe she never gave up. I hurt her over and over again. But she still loved me. So cool and now she's taking such good care of me...I broke her heart cuz I thought I knew...I'm sorry."
Parents hang in there it is so worth it! They will see it some day. I know it gets tough especially with teens but actions speak volumes to them.
God’s word to us today is from Psalm 37:3-7a…Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him…
December 6, 2008
It's hard to believe it has been more than a week since Danni is gone. Time goes so quickly. Matt, the children and I are doing well. Slowly we've taken care of the flowers and straightened Danni's room.
It's nice to be able to go and be where she was whenever I'm missing her. It's the little things that I see that make me think of her. I opened the freezer yesterday and there were her favorite vegan sandwiches and her little frozen things of spaghetti sauce that I had stored away for her whenever she had a craving for a small bowl of spaghetti.
Or her shirt laying on the folding counter in the laundry room that makes me miss her. Our lives have gone back to what was before and it seems that Danni is just away at college.
I was painting my bedroom yesterday, my friends know that painting is my way of clearing my head and thinking through things, I bet our walls have 100 coats of paint on them. I had been wanting to paint our bedroom since we switched with Danni.
I was listening to the radio and three songs came on right in a row that meant so much to me during Danni's illness one of them says this:
I will praise you in this storm and I will lift my hands for you are who you are no matter where I am and every tear I 've cried you hold in your hand, you never left my side and though my heart is torn, I will praise you in this storm.
I cried and lifted my hands to God and thanked him for being there and then I painted some more. There is another line in that same song that says:
I raise my hands and praise the God who gives and takes away...
Once again I praised him and cried. Danni was mine to look after until the day God required her to go home, that's how all of our children are to be to us. We are only entrusted with them for a short time but they are HIS.
The word says this in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
Because of Danni's faith in Jesus, we will see her again riding with him at the trumpet blast of his return if we are still alive to see it happen and if I have "fallen asleep" in death at that time I will be with them! There is no reason for me to grieve as one who has no hope, I have hope! Christ Jesus is my Hope!
It may sound simple and really it is! But it is the truth about the situation. Does it mean I won't have times of missing her? Obviously not, but the knowledge that I will see her again is a huge comfort that allows me to walk on in confidence.
Danni has graduated from the school of this life to heaven and all the angels rejoice! No more pain, no more sorrow, no more tears, no more putting antifreeze in her car in subzero weather, the list goes on and on :) Why would I wish her back? For what? To face death again at some point? To suffer some more?
No! There is no need to fall apart, there is HOPE!! HE LIVES and so does she and so do I! Hope lives in me! This same Hope lives in you if you have received Jesus as your Savior.
I know that Danni was very concerned about her friends. As I was reading through her journal she mentioned several times that partying and drinking was all that her friends thought about. She had resigned herself to be done with these things, she even said she was sick of these things, she said that cancer changes everything. She said that she was concerned about her friends, "don't they know?" was her response.
Life is short, come to Jesus and let him fill your life as Danni did.
Here is a video that was shown at Danni's Funeral. It is 13 minutes long and contains a bunch of snapshots from her life.
December 2, 2008
Today I checked on all of Danni's financial things that needed to be taken care of. The phone has rang and rang today with people asking how we are doing and businesses calling me back.
I can't bring myself to go through her things yet, maybe next week. Matty, Jessi and Atlee stayed home one more day before beginning the ordinary everydays again. Danni's dad came to divide the blanket gifts and flowers and plants. Many thanks to everyone for their loving generosity.
Mom is staying until next week some time but Dad will go home tomorrow. I feel like my mind is in neutral just coasting along not really motivated to do anything. The past ten months seem like a dream everything is so surreal.
I feel positive about the future but I'm not in so much of a hurry as I once was. Everything used to be rush, rush, rush but I intend to go at a slower pace and enjoy every bit of my children's lives and my own.
Going through something like this makes you very aware of life and every detail of it. I wonder what God has in store for me to do now, in a way it's exciting to think about what the future holds.
I will never forget the past, I miss her, I watched the video of her coloring several times today. What a beautiful gift I unknowingly gave to myself. God is so good he thinks of everything. That's it for now, one day down and who knows how many more to go.
December 1, 2008
We had such a wonderful time yesterday, my brother-in-law worked all day on the video presentation while my friends and I went shopping for items that would personalize the casket piece.
It sounds strange but I think she would have been blessed as we remembered her every like and dislike carefully putting together the funeral to end all funerals! I wish.
We laughed and cried, my friends and family and I, we rejoiced and sang while Dad played the piano. My friend did Danni's "Red Chair" remembrance poster and we ate and enjoyed each other's company.
We took pictures of all the ladies who had given themselves fully to Danni's cause lovingly caring for her all these last months and weeks. What a blast to celebrate all that Danni was to each one of us!
I know it sounds strange but it really helped to ease the pain. I am very grateful for the blessed day's that the Lord has so generously poured out upon us as we prepare for the day of her body's departure.
Her spirit is secure! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
Both Services will be at:
Stone's Hill Community Church
151 West Stones Hill Rd.
Ligonier, IN 46767
Viewing Times: Sunday Nov. 30, 2pm-7pm
Service Time: Monday Dec. 1, 10 am
More info: www.yeagerfuneralhome.com
Memorials may be sent to:
Cancer Services of N.E. Indiana
6316 Mutual Dr.
Ft Wayne, IN 46825
All are welcome
November 27, 2008
The house is quiet. We've eaten our share of turkey and have had our naps. What do we do now? We move on putting one foot in front of the other, I feel the need to walk again. Walk through these days of grief and sorrow, love and laughter remembering Danni and allowing God to begin the healing in us now.
Tomorrow we will have a meeting with the funeral home and I will post the specifics for anyone who wishes to attend. All are welcome.
Thank you for all the beautiful thoughts and prayers. God hasn't let us down he has a bigger plan. I will continue to journal this journey to help bring healing to myself and others. This is simply a new chapter, one of grief and healing.
I am thankful today that Danni is in no pain, that she runs with the Father through green fields and cool streams. I am thankful for Jessi, Atlee, Mallorie and Wes. I'm thankful for wonderful friends who are willing to walk through fire with me!
I'm thankful for the power of the Holy Spirit that lives in me and picks me up to carry me during this time of sorrow, he is the one who guides me on. Jesus will sustain me.
He will carry me like a lamb over his shoulders, I am so thankful for that.
We are like iron that has been heated and shaped then plunged into water to bring strenghth to the shape only to be heated again and shaped again and plunged again until we are the perfect tool in the craftsman's hand. For this I am thankful.
Use me Lord. Use us Lord, further your kingdom...Amen.
Danni went with Jesus to a place better than here.
She went to sleep, peaceful sleep.
November 26, 2008
Danni is currently sleeping constantly. She was waking to my voice this morning but since about 11 am I cannot rouse her.
Her countenance is peaceful and she sleeps quietly which is a dramatic change from the last 2 or 3 days. She was constantly talking day and night and was very restless, so much so that medication didn't even seem to control it. Now, she is quiet.
With so many who love her here, her cheeks have been stroked and kissed a thousand times. I don't think a second goes by without someone touching her and speaking softly to her.
I'm so glad she's at home and we have been working so hard to take care of her. This is our reward to shower God's love over her as she sleeps waiting patiently for the Lord.
It is truly a beautiful and holy time.
November 26, 2008
In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.
I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
Men of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. This man was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.
BUT GOD raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was IMPOSSIBLE for death to keep its hold on him. David said about him:
I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN. Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will live in hope, because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay. You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.
Acts 2:36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
Acts 2: 38-40 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for ALL who are a FAR OFF—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”
I say the same to you; the promise is there for all of us. It is the same for us as it was for them!
If you would like to accept Jesus as your Savior today pray out loud the following and have something truly thankful to be for this Thanksgiving Day.
Jesus, I believe you are my Savior and I receive all that you have for me. I know I am a sinner and that I confess to you. Come into my life and make me whole, be the Lord of my life. Amen
PS. Notice the word BUT GOD above and realize what that means in your situation, in Danni's situation. When you look at all your facing remember....BUT GOD! HE CAN CHANGE EVERYTHING!
November 25, 2008
Danni is deteriorating quickly it seems, I won't go into detail but I think we will say that she needs a miracle and we are down to the wire.
Believe me when I say that I very much understand that healing comes in many forms and I am not holding God to a particular form, that is his business with Danni and none of mine.
After seeing the kind of suffering I have seen the last 10 months, I am asking God for healing mercy of ANY kind!
I do, however, hold unwavering and undoubting to the FACT that God CAN heal her on this earth IF HE so chooses!
SO...Please pray that we get her new pain meds working properly. Pain meds are not something we want a lapse in and they are trying some new things for her all mixed into 1 thing that we can give every 4 hours or so.
This has become necessary because Danni is having a lot of trouble swallowing pills. She is having quite a bit of pain and anxiety when she is conscience.
Well, I'm falling asleep while writing this so if it isn't making much sense that's why. Anyways, GOD IS GOOD TO US ALL THE TIME! GOD IS IN CONTROL! And thanks for your continued prayers!
November 24, 2008
We confirmed that Danni CAN see, sorry about the confusion.
November 24, 2008
I'm sorry to report that there have been some changes in Danni's physical condition. She's become very vocal in the last couple of days groaning or talking constantly, sometimes very loud at times. We think that the tumors have invaded her language area.
She is also having trouble at times swallowing and this morning I noticed that she wasn't tracking with her eyes so I'm not sure if she can still see or not. It's hard for her to tell hot from cold and up from down.
Her condition seems to be rapidly deteriorating at some moments and then at others she's wide awake talking and joking and eating and swallowing just fine. I feel like we're on a roller coaster never knowing when we'll be jerked one way or the other.
She hasn't been pulling her oxygen out like she had been before so that's a blessing that we don't have to watch her like a hawk. Danni has also begun to refuse her meds at times. She understands what is going on so I've given her the independance she needs to decide for herself if she wants them.
It seems that it's very difficult most times to get her to wake up. I've been researching these things online and I feel we're getting near to the end. She's so fragile, it is the Lord who is sustaining her, but then again he has all along.
Please continue to agree with us for the Lord's will in this situation. I have no doubt in my mind that my God is able to heal but as his thoughts are higher than my thoughts and his ways higher than mine all I can do is agree with God that his will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
I am submitted to God and Danni and I are at the foot of the cross sitting and waiting patiently for God to deliver her.
November 22, 2008
It had been a good day, or so we thought, Danni had everyone in stitches! She was her ornery self joking with everyone. The problem came at 1 in the morning when she couldn’t stop talking… “How do I relax, mom?” she said. She couldn’t stop talking, her chest was hurting, “heart hurt, heart hurt,” was what she said to me.
“My side hurts and my shoulder, 7, 8, 9,” she went on to say indicating the level of pain from 1 to 10, 10 being the most painful. I called the nurse, apparently her anxiety had been building all day and night into the next morning, I knew that something wasn’t right.
We determined that Danni had a tolerance to the anxiety meds she was taking and needed something different, they weren't working anymore.
I sat by her bed and held her hand to keep her from picking at herself from mounting anxiety. She fought with every breath to keep herself calm. Prayer came forth from her spirit like I have never heard from her.
“Father, give me the strength and courage I need to be more like you, touch and heal me, take the pain from my side.. help me to be more like you, give me courage and strength so that I can lead people to you…help so and so thank you for giving them the understanding to help us understand the scriptures…give them courage and strength to be more like you and do your will….”
On and on she went using her labored breath to pray for herself to be more like her heavenly father and praying with honest concern for others. I sat there amazed at what I was hearing, the Spirit inside of her was taking control and taking the awful circumstances she was in to cause her to cry out to him to be more like him, to bless others, to protect others and to make good come from bad.
At three we knew the nurse would be on her way with the new anxiety meds and I couldn’t take it anymore. I was exhausted and Matt said, “Go to bed, I’ll sit with her.” As he sat with her she was whispering things to him. He couldn’t hear what she was saying so he got down so he could hear clearly. “Do you think Mal and Wes will be okay?” she said “You tell them I’m praying for them every day…”
Mal and Wes are Danni’s step-sister and brother, Matt’s children. Matt broke. Once again her concern with the breath she had was for someone else. This doesn’t come from her as an individual but from the Holy Spirit that lives within her.
Romans 8:26 says, “In the same way the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express…”
He comes along side; he walks with us and even prays for us! What a vivid expression of this we witnessed as the Holy Spirit rose in Danni and prayed through her prayers of faith and deliverance. It was a beautiful, awe inspiring thing to behold.
The word is true! We can put our faith in it! We can believe what it says! What a comfort in such a dark time to see that God was still in control. As bad as the circumstances were, the Spirit was revealing himself to us through Danni.
The nurse came around 7am and administered the new meds to her and I’m told she went right to sleep. She was exhausted and so were we but what a privilege to actually see the deposit of the Holy Spirit within her guaranteeing what is to come! (2 Corinthians 1:22, 2 Cor. 5:5 and Ephesians 1:14) What rest for a mother’s heart.
November 19, 2008
Round about 3 am this morning Danni was having quite a bit of pain in her right shoulder and side and her head was hurting as well. These are new developments. She was also having trouble breathing.
So the nurse came out and assessed her. Her oxygen level was good but the pain meds weren't covering the extra pain she was having so we increased her pain meds and steroid dosage.
The breathing pattern change, loss of use of her arm and headache are probably tumor related.
The Lord has been blessing her abundantly lately. He moved on the heart of one of her friend's mom to make her a colorful blanket with pictures of all her friends and family it blessed us all greatly.
Matt G came and sang her his song and we were blessed. Then today the UPS truck brought her a freshly baked shoefly pie from her uncle in PA. What yummy surprise! Also, a lady came to the door with free flowers. She had been chosen to receive them from a local business and she had several friends come to see her. It has been a very blessed day and couple of weeks.
God's love continues to be poured out in truck loads! God is so charming! He is thoughtful and kind, moving on the hearts of his people to bless us and remind us of his goodness in our darkest of hours.
What a wonderful God we serve, what a friend who loves us to the end and beyond! His love never ends it endures forever! We wait patiently upon him and treasure every day. Thank you God for your goodness! I praise you!
November 15, 2008
Sitting in her quiet room I can hear the machines humming in the background. It’s so hard to know what to do. She seems to be having more pain today. She’s confused easily and she is having a hard time catching her breath. Why wouldn’t she? She’s running a marathon called life. She’s straining hard with every breath. Her heart pounds harder with every step toward the goal.
She whispers encouragement to herself. “Okay, what do we do next?” “Stay calm, your job is to stay calm” “Okay, thank you” “Calm, calm, calm.”
She’s hot then the next minute she’s cold but her skin feels the same. Is she talking with God? We wonder amongst ourselves. Maybe this is going on, maybe that is going on…we run the scenarios over and over in our minds trying to comprehend where we are at and what is going on.
It’s consuming. Is she near the finish line? Will God intervene? How does all this fit into his plan? “I’m here beside you beloved,” he whispers to me. That still small voice says, “Trust me.” I think this is the hardest test I’ve ever faced. I am learning the true meaning of Psalms 46:10 painted in pretty teal paint on her wall. “Let be and be still and know that I am God,” it says to me. That is so hard, I think to myself.
In our fast pace society it is a real challenge to just sit and be still literally waiting on the Lord to move. I do trivial things; I watch TV or read my bible. I surf the net trying to find any kind of distraction but even the world wide web isn’t enough to take my mind off of act 1, take 1 of the drama unfolding before me.
This race is grueling. We all run together, we are all connected. When she suffers, we suffer. When she has joy, we have joy. The word just can’t be denied, it is true!
I don’t want to do anything but sit in her room and watch her. Will I think back on these days in days to come? What will be happening in a month from now, I wonder. Staying in the day, in the hour, in the minute, in the second is a huge discipline for me.
Everything we’re taught in the beginning of life we have to learn again at the end of life. The cycle of life runs full circle. We begin with someone taking care of us 24 hours a day and we come to the end of the cycle the same way. This life is a strange thing.
I used to take everything for granted, not so anymore. Going through these life altering situations forever changes your perspective on life. Little annoying things don’t seem to matter.
Things that were important fade to black and you wonder what you were thinking when those things held such a prominent place in your every day.
This is therapy for me. Writing helps to free my mind from the millions of thoughts swirling about in my head. Wondering is a heavy taskmaster… if only I could disconnect from it for the rest of this story and just live in the moment enjoying every second as opposed to trying to analyze everything.
My desire to control things runs deep and I am sure that this is an area that is lovingly being disciplined out of me by my doting Father. He watches over me constantly helping me at every turn.
The changes I see in Danni concern me and then I have to remind myself that this is God’s show and he is in charge. Not easily accepted by a control freak! But nevertheless, thy will and not mine. Man, isn’t there any other way this cup can pass? Thy will and not mine. The inner struggle wears me out.
Round and round I go through the cycle mentioned above…no wonder I’m exhausted. I’m a little slow; finally I turn to Jesus and say to him, “help me deal with this, help me run this race with Danni with the same perseverance and courage that she has so graciously displayed.” Jesus, I need your peace, peace that passes all understanding, peace that doesn’t fade, that can’t be taken away from me.
I snuggle my face into the folds of his robe and take a tassel from his garment in my hand running it through my fingers, waiting for his presence to comfort me.
He is faithful, he gathers me in his arms and I receive peace. Thank God for Jesus, he’s all I have and that is more than enough for me.
I need thee, oh, I need thee, every hour I need thee, oh bless me now my Savior, I come to thee. The old hymn runs through my mind like a river refreshing my soul. Thank you Jesus. Thank you Jesus. You never leave or forsake us. You’re just a cry away. My hope is secure in you.
November 14, 2008
I was discussing with a friend the other day all of Danni’s medical situations when it dawned on me how fragile is her condition. As I thought about this I realized that every day she lives is a miracle! We are seeing miracle after miracle day after day as the Lord gives us fresh mercy. Just one more day with Danni.
Matt led our family to Mark 8 last Sunday. As we read verse by verse stopping at each one that spoke something to us I realized that my focus had been on the miracle instead of the Miracle Maker. I had to repent and get my eyes focused in Jesus’ direction again.
Mark 8 begins with Jesus feeding the four thousand…I love what the Lord says in verses 2-3 he was so concerned about the basic needs of the people. He has compassion when he looks at them and doesn’t want them to collapse.
I thought about the long journey we have been on with Jesus and how he brought this word with compassion to us to help us understand so that we didn’t collapse. Jesus used miracles as a teaching tool to reveal more of who he was to the people.
When Jesus feeds you there is a lot to go around. He fed me, so I will break this bread and fish with you. May it be multiplied to feed multitudes in Jesus Name Amen!
Verse 11 of Mark 8 reads as follows…when he landed on the shore... “the Pharisees came out and began to dispute with Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, testing him.”
They wanted a miraculous sign and in verse 12 Jesus tells them they won’t receive a sign. Seeing their hearts he recognized that they just wanted him to prove himself to them and he didn’t see the need, he didn’t answer to them.
He gets back into the boat (vs. 13) and begins to teach his disciples about the attitude they had just encountered in the Pharisees only his disciples have bread on the brain! I laughed out loud at their response and then realized many times it’s my response! Many times I don’t understand what Jesus is saying.
In verses 17-21, Jesus is saying, don’t you get it? It’s about attitudes not bread! If we need more bread I can handle that didn’t I prove that to you? It’s about the attitude that says prove who you are Jesus but the Pharisees wouldn’t have believed even if they would have had a sign. The need for a miraculous sign is a distraction; they didn’t want to know who Jesus was they just wanted proof. God isn’t one to do things because little humans demand.
I used to think that this chain of events was not related but the flow here is beautiful. Next, a blind man is brought to Jesus for him to heal (notice what Jesus says to the disciples in verses 17-18). Jesus first addresses the physical with spitting on the man’s eyes and then asks him if he can see. The man says he sees people and they look like trees.
The disciples and Pharisees were blind as we are many times.
Here is one of the few times when Jesus heals someone that it happens progressively and not immediately. Jesus then lays his hands on him again (vs. 25) and tells him to look up! (NKJ Version) How profound! Look to Jesus! And then the man saw everyone clearly and is told not to tell anyone.
It doesn’t say this but is it possible that the man saw Jesus for who he was (Messiah) as healing was brought to his eyes the second time? Did Jesus heal his physical eyes and then the eyes of his spirit? This is good prayer food!
In verses 27-30 Jesus asked his disciples “Who do men say that I am?” and Peter is divinely given the right answer to the question, “You are the Christ”. Then Jesus tells the disciples not to tell anyone just like he did the blind man. I found this interesting. Perhaps the blind man did receive the revelation of Jesus the Christ.
Jesus does these awesome miracles because he has compassion on the people. He also wants to teach his disciples something about himself. He wants to reveal himself to them so that they would find out more about him. It isn’t so much about the miracle as it is that we get to know him in a deeper way and see him for who he really is…our savior.
I had to think of my motives for asking for a miracle. Motives are important when we are in prayer about anything. (James 4:3) Weren’t my motives to make everything like it was before? End the suffering?
But Jesus looks at me and says, “Who do you say I am?” (Mark 8 27-30) He wants deeper relationship. He wants to reveal himself in a more profound way. He wants us all to know him in a way we never have known. I had to repent of my shallow, selfish thinking.
Whether or not a miracle happens is none of my business. He just wants me to know him more so I asked God to put in me a deep desire to know him more and I will leave all miracles to him.
The scripture goes on in verse 34-38. Here I had to switch to the Message version to understand what Jesus was conveying. It reads like this, “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering, embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to saving yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you?...”
In seeking the miracle, I wanted to run from the suffering but this trial must work its deeper work in me that in some way I turn to Jesus and say help me understand, help me to know you and how you work in a deeper way. Let these circumstances bring me into a greater intimacy with you.
This should be my focus, Jesus, and not what he may or may not do for me.
November 12, 2008
Amazingly Danni's oxygen stats are getting better. Every day they climb a few numbers. She's comfortable and still eating and drinking.
She's been awake and alert off and on. Her lungs sound good but she still needs more healing.
We've done all we can do to stand and so we will continue to stand in faith leaving the miracles to God I will focus on knowing him in a deeper way.
Thank you Jesus for another day with Danni. Thank you for your love and mercy concerning our family. Thank you for answering our prayers. Thank you that you are in control and help us all to come to a deeper knowledge of you through this journey. Amen
P.S. Matt we are looking forward to hearing the song you wrote!
November 10, 2008
Danni is sleeping a lot these days, she still has somewhat of an appetite but its only at certain times of the day that she wakes up enough to eat. Those times are precious to us as we get some good interaction with her.
We sit with her constantly all day and all night watching and waiting for signs of life or death. She's very quiet because it takes a lot of precious breath and effort to speak. She's still eating and drinking so swallowing isn't a problem at this point.
She has a new infection on her belly that they can do nothing about except cover the wound and give her some antibiotics. She isn't running a fever and we are keeping her as comfortable as possible. Most times she refuses her pain meds but we continue to give her something for anxiety.
This is the point we are at and things are about the same or maybe change slightly every day. Waiting on the Lord.
I'm going to try and get some shut eye, sorry I don't have anything better to report. Thanks for all the continued prayers.
You are all very special people.
November 8, 2008
Days and nights run together. People come and people go from the house bringing love and prayers and food. Some stay the night and others stay for just minutes. Constantly love is poured out over us.
Rest comes in cat naps here and there. Sometimes when I do lay down I can't sleep. I'm tired of decaying flesh. I long for him to come and deliver her, deliver us. Its difficult to wait patiently on the Lord when I see the things I'm seeing.
Watching someone you love so much walk this lonely trail is exhausting, it's painful and I feel so helpless. Looking at pictures of how she used to be and seeing her earthen vessel today I realize how vain is all of the things we do to keep this flesh from wearing out.
I was having a hard time last night and the Lord said Job 23, I expected that he was going to reprimand me for the way I was speaking to him and instead the scripture was exactly how I was feeling. He knows what I'm going through, he watched his son die too.
He put his arm around me in our secret place and pulled me inside of him. He surrounded me with his Spirit, hiding me under his wing. How anyone can say there is no God or that he doesn't care about us, I don't know. He is so loving and kind, so long-suffering with us. He sees our needs and afflictions and gathers us to himself to hide us in him.
I know he's in control and I'm thankful for that but it's very difficult to know how I fit. What am I supposed to do in this whole thing? Painted on Danni's wall is the scripture..."Let be and be still and know that I am God" (Psalms 46:10). Often the Lord reminds me to look at the wall, over and over again he says, "Let be and be still and know that I am God" but what does that mean? How does one do that in the face of such grim circumstances.
"My grace is sufficient for thee, my power is made perfect in weakness," is another scripture on a picture hanging on her wall. How true. Do I completely understand what that means? I would be lying if I said yes. In the last few days, I've gone back to the solid truth...Jesus Christ and him crucified.
I am amazed at myself, up and down, round and round I go. I believe he is able but what is here for her when eternity is so close? She says she wants to live and then she says,"I just don't want to be in pain anymore." What a struggle must be going on inside her.
I have released her! I am not so selfish as to ask her to stay, believing for her healing is not my idea! So heal her God! Hasn't she suffered enough!?
I haven't lost heart or my faith but this whole thing has made me question why it is that I believe what I do about healing. It is such an illusive thing and has little to do with us. Little to do with our "feelings" or the way we pray, all that is flesh.
What it has to do with is God and his will and plan and we are just subject to it. Yes he cares and is a compassionate God but he's is not so impressed with our flesh and it is our eternal soul that matters most to him and rightly so! This life is obviously as the word says a "vapor, mist and flower of the field" it can be taken in an instant by the will of the one who created it and yet we live our lives as if we are in control. What a joke. We are so deceived!
He gives us opportunity after opportunity to come to him and enter into rest and peace and we snub our noses at him as if we have the ability to live our lives apart from him.
People if there is anything that I could say to convince you to accept him as your saviour I would but I fear that those of you who don't believe will continue in your paths until one day God will get your attention.
Out of his deep love for you he will continue to pursue you. I encourage you today to stop, turn around and say to him come into my life, you have my attention. Obviously your life won't be all roses if you come to him as you can plainly see by looking at mine but he will give you the strength in your weakness to be able to endure even the most dire of circumstances with grace and dignity.
Danni's security is set, her crowns are waiting, she let Jesus be Lord of her life and she will be with him at some point in time, eternally at peace. I want that for all of you; that is my prayer for you.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28 He stands, inches from your face waiting for you to answer his invitation. Will you come into his arms of safety and allow him to hide you in himself even as he did for me today? He treats us all the same, what he does for me he will do for you. It's time for you to answer the call.
November 6, 2008
We've been told by the doc that Danni may be down to days. It felt so surreal as he told me what we could expect to transpire. I remember thinking to myself ,yea, but God is in control. Often in scripture deliverance didn't come until the very last minute.
I think of Isaac and Abraham in Genesis chapter 22 because God gave me these scriptures last night after I had talked with the doc. Isaac wasn't delivered from the hand of his father Abraham until seconds before his impending death, but God provided a ram for the sacrifice.
Also, in our family devotions time last night Isaiah 60:1-3 was Jessi's scripture that she opened to and then we also read Isaiah 58:8-9. Atlee's scripture that he picked out was Isaiah 28.These were quite an encouragement. Matt's scripture was Luke 13: 22-30 about the narrow door that we must all go through to enter the kingdom.
All of these spoke of God's plans for the future, his sovereignty, power ,judgements and miraculous provision. So we set our face like flint (Isaiah 50:7)and stay the course no matter what the circumstances and we wait for God's sovereign hand of power, judgement and miraculous provision.
November 4, 2008
We are continuing to watch Danni around the clock with parents, step-parents, grandparents and tragedy coordinators all taking turns. While Danni is sleeping she itches her nose or rubs her face and knocks her oxygen off quite frequently especially during the night. We put it on as quickly as we can when we see it.
Some things have cleared up including her lungs which are sounding good. We've also been seeing some change in her blood sugar readings that are encouraging. The numbers have been below 200 and one day in particular I didn't give her insulin all day as we were concerned she might bottom out!
Every day I stand and wait to see the deliverance of my God believeing in faith that he will heal her. Morning comes with hopes for the day and evening sets with new challenges to say "be moved, in the Name of Jesus, be cast into the sea!" Waiting is a hard thing but I know its developing patience and perserverance and character and strengh so I praise God even in these most difficult of times.
I am enjoying having family and friends around us all the time. It is such a precious thing to work together for one purpose.
I don't really have anymore to tell you. With round the clock care I'm up all time catching cat naps when I can but mom is always on call :}
Once again I will clearly state that the Lord is going to heal her unto life not healing unto death! She will live to testify of the miraculous healing power of God for the benefit of salvation to others! I agree with those of you who say she will be healed! By Him and for Him and through Him...All about Him! Souls for the kingdom...salvation to all who recieve Him! AMEN!
November 1, 2008
Danni was having some anxious moments last night and several times in the night without knowing it she took her oxygen off. I slept in a chair with one of the tragedy coordinators nearby on her little red couch. I had to sleep in the chair near her to put the oxygen back into her nose.
Today has also been an anxious day for her when she is awake. After speaking with the hospice nurse today, we've decided to keep her medicated on a regular basis to keep her calm rather than just when she thinks she needs it. Danni was in agreement when I told her the nurse said that she really should be taking the meds on a scheduled basis.
Her breathing is the major issue.
Nevertheless, we will not give up hope that the Lord will heal her! NEVER GIVE UP! That's what Danni said she had learned and so we will NEVER GIVE UP HOPE! AMEN!
October 31, 2008
Danni is having a good day. She seems to be feeling a bit better. I thank God for giving us the meds we need to keep her comfortable. Her lungs are sounding better and she's still eating and resting well.
For the first time in days her sugar has been below 300 so that's a good sign that she's healing too. I continue to stand firm in my belief that she'll be raised out of her sick bed and made well. We've had some awesome times of prayer recently as we laid our hands on her.
I'm confident that God has more for her to do and I stand believing no matter what things "look" like!(Hebrews 11:1) Faith is for right now! It is "now faith" not later faith. God is in her and he is far bigger (1John 4:4) than anything the enemy can throw at us, she is equipped with all she needs (Eph 6, 2Peter 1:3). God is for her who can be against her?(Romans 8:31) Not the "name"of cancer or pneumonia or any other thing that would seek to raise its ugly head.(Phil 2:10) They were all defeated on the cross with the stripes laid on Christ's back.(Isaiah 53:5)
Woo Hoo thank you Jesus! You are supreme! You are awesome in your power! I BELIEVE!
October 27, 2008
The weather is changing and while its getting colder outside the warmth of Danni's heart is still becoming more beautiful each day. She is a light burning brightly. Yesterday we had our time together with our family reading the word and praying. We talked about Hebrews 11, commonly known as the "faith chapter" and also chapter 12.
We discussed how we go through disciplines that increase our faith and cause us to grow closer to God. The word says in Hebrews 12:7 to "endure hardship as discipline" and that the discipline comes to those God loves (vs.6). When we had finished talking about these things we all went around and said what it was that we have learned in the past 9 months.
Jessi (15) was the first to speak and she said she had become very curious as to what God's plan was for her life. Atlee (10) said that he had learned that "we can't do the things that God can do." Matt said that he had learned more about God's love and mercy also that God is in control. My ideas were along the lines of what Matt and Atlee had said but Danni's were different. She said that she had learned to "trust God and never ever give up."
Nothing blesses a mom's heart more than to know their child has given themselves to the purposes of God wholeheartedly. If through all these circumstances of discipline Danni came near to God and fully gave herself to him then all the struggle and pain has produced a "harvest of righteousness" (Heb. 12:11). The word "discipline" used here does not mean punishment but in the sense that an athlete "disciplines" his body for the race to make it stronger. (Heb. 12:1)
I love it when the Lord brings his word into our lives and shows us through situations exactly what he means by what he has spoken. It's a beautiful thing.
Things are also changing with Danni's pain, it has increased and where she didn't have pain before now she has pain. It has moved from her right shoulder to her right ribs, at this point it doesn't matter what the pain is coming from our goal is to keep her comfortable so we've changed pain meds from the current ones she is taking to others that are much stronger.
She still has her sense of humor even with all she's facing. Yesterday I gave her a pill for her to swallow and she lifted her hand palm up to the ceiling. She was moving her arm up and down so I asked her if she wanted the head of the bed up higher and she said, "No, I'm dancing!" So funny!
I'm so grateful that she's home and that we live in a country where we can get the meds we need to keep the pain at bay, where she can lay in an air bed to keep her skin well, where people pull together no matter what walk of life they are from to give of themselves in such loving ways.
Lord, I thank you and I praise you for your love and provision for us! You are awesome! Your yoke is light and your burden is easy. Thank you for bearing the weight of this on your shoulders as it would easily crush us into dust. I praise you, I praise you, I praise you! You are good all the time!
October 24, 2008
The day started out like normal, up at 4 am to give Danni meds and then a breathing treatment. Check her sugar and get her a bowl of cereal then a big shot of insulin. A couple of phone calls from friends to see how the night went and if we needed anything.
I had a wonderful, encouraging phone call with more friends, lunch, more insulin and some pills for Danni. Danni’s doctor also came to the house with a nurse that had taken care of her at the hospital to check on us and listen to her lungs.
I caught a little nap before the aide came with the hospice nurse hot on her heals and then came the bed guy. We got Danni an air bed to help prevent anymore bed sores. There was only one problem, we had to get Danni out of the bed completely for it to be installed because the old mattress had to come off….here’s where the day got interesting.
The nurse, aide and I decided that we could try to contact the fire department to help us move her since she can’t walk or even sit up by herself. I called the chief and he said he’d round up some guys and be there in a few minutes. What an awesome fire department we have!
In the mean time, I started for Danni’s room when I heard guitar music. "Where could that be coming from?" I thought to myself. There in the corner was the mattress guy with Matt’s guitar. “Ok, whatever, go with the flow” I thought, I was glad he felt comfortable enough to play. I come from a family of musicians and Matt is a musician so I understand how that all works, instruments are irresistable to them!
By that time the six, or was it seven fire fighters had arrived with back board in hand. We bundled her up in the sheets on the bed and lifted her over enough to get her on the board. Then the guys belted her in for her “magic carpet ride” and lifted her off of the bed.
The nurse, Danni’s step-mom and I grabbed the old mattress and took it off the frame. At which time the mattress dude did his thing with the new air mattress. God had provided again, man, he’s good!!
She lay on the backer board with the fireman all around holding her in midair until the mattress guy was done. Then they laid her gently back on the bed and carefully took the board out from under her. The “carpet” had landed and Danni was safe in her bed again.
In an instant the firefighters were out the door and the aide and nurse where finishing Danni’s bath. I had to crash so I told them I was going to go sleep. The aide did my dishes and washed Danni’s bedding as I rested.
I lay in bed and thought about the events of the day, and the day wasn’t even over yet! How blessed we are, how truly blessed! Only in Topeka, small town America! We are truly blessed here in this land!
The truth is these firemen have been out to the house countless times ready and willing to do all they could for us and I want to acknowledge their compassion and dedication, they are a great bunch of guys and Topeka is a better place to live because of their service!
Not only all this but a hot meal was delivered to our door around dinner time with some yummy chocolate brownies and ice cream! Oh help me Jesus!
I was once again blessed beyond belief!
Father, I thank you for all you are doing in our community, thank you for these guys who dedicate their lives to serve for little to nothing in return. Thank you for sending us such good people to take extra special care of Danni from the aides to the nurses, doctors, EMTs and firemen. Thank you for all the love you’ve poured out over our family.
You are faithful and I can hardly wait to see the good things you will continue to do, keeping every promise the word speaks. Father, in childlike faith I ask for a miracle healing for Danni and I acknowledge all the miracles we and the community have already experienced on this journey.
I believe you, Father, for your word says if we agree about anything we ask for it will be done for us by you! (Matthew 18:19) We agree and wait eagerly for you to respond, all for the purpose of more souls for the kingdom in accordance with the heart of your word. AMEN! AMEN! AMEN!
We had a good meeting with the hospice gals last night. I will have an aide that comes every day for 3 hours so that will give me time to get out or sleep whatever I will need.
Danni had a good day yesterday morning but she's sleeping quite a bit already today. I feel in the swing of things and God is giving me grace to do the all day all night thing. I feel rested and at peace. God is answering your prayers.
It has been good for the kids to see everyone working together as one troop, dad and step-mom, mom and step-dad, grandparents and step-grandparents, friends, neighbors, and community. They are learning invaluable lessons about life and living and loving your neighbor as yourself. Literal love lessons straight from 1 Corinthians 13 played out before thier eyes and they themselves are walking there too. Even though the circumstances are bad this is an awesome training ground not just for the kids but for all who are involved.
I would like to honor the grandmas especially; I praise God for them they have been a God-send to me. Doing laundry and dishes, visiting at the hospital and giving tirelessly of themselves. Early on my mom was here for a length of time and when she left Danni's dad's mom stepped up to the plate and has been helping since then. Even Danni's step-grandparents have been very supportive.
Pray for the grandmas today, would ya, pray that God's loving arms would be around them in a special way. Pray for special blessings upon them. They are the quiet ones in the background that need to be lifted up as well. Next week my mom will be back to stay for a while again so we look forward to her being here with us. Pray for her safe and comfortable travel as she's coming on the bus (18 hours straight, yikes).
I continue to marvel at the love God shows to us every day through all our family, friends and neighbors. I want to thank him that he doesn't leave us alone during these times but provides all we need through this remarkable network. It is a thing of beauty to behold seen clear as crystal in the face of adversity.
October 23, 2008
Its been a long night and day but worth all the hard work to have her home. This afternoon the hospice people will be here to set her up in their system so hopefully I'll have just one more night of doing it alone, well, Matt was a tremendous help.
I've also gotten a lot of help from neighbors and friends. Running errands, helping me to change bedding and move Danni and even sleeping with cell phone in hand ready to run in the middle of the night if I need help.
What an awesome community God has placed us in and what an awesome group of exceptional people who put feet to their faith! They are even organizing meals for every other day for a while. I am overwhelmed with their loving-kindness. May God bless them abundantly as well as all of you who faithfully pray for Danni all day and even several times a day.
October 22, 2008
Danni is coming home this morning by ambulance. She still has pneumonia but it seems the breathing treatments, exercises and antibiotics are keeping it from progressing too much.
We continue to wait for her healing to break forth like the dawn. Last night she was more chipper and for the first time in almost 2 weeks felt like being on her computer.
Last night, however, was pretty rough for her she had some trouble with panic attacks and didn't sleep very well. I'm hoping when we get her home she'll get more rest.
This time around I'll have the help of hospice so any thoughts of not being able to do this have faded away. Once again God is in control and he is leading the way. We wait upon him.
Thank you for your continued prayers.
October 21, 2008
IS 42:5-9 This is what God the Lord says-
he who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and all that comes out of it,
who gives breath to its people,
and life to those who walk on it:
I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness;
I will take hold of your hand.
I will keep you and will make you
to be a covenant for the people
and a light for the Gentiles,
to open eyes that are blind,
to free captives from prison
and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.
"I am the Lord; that is my name!
I will not give my glory to another
or my praise to idols.
See, the former things have taken place,
and new things I declare;
before they spring into being
I announce them to you."
I found this scripture yesterday and it made me think of Danni. From the very beginning she said to me that "God would be there holding her hand all the way."
How perfectly this scripture speaks to that effect. It also goes on to say why he will hold her hand so as to be a light to the Gentiles, to those who don't know him. God wants to set them free from blindness, prisons and dungeons just as he has done for every one of us who have believed in him.
All through his Son and his Spirit doing the work within her; not that it has that much to do with her but it is according to his plan and his word for those who don't know him so that they can see him. He will have the glory in this situation!
Every day to everyone who encounters Danni she is a sign to them that life is short and that today is the day of salvation! People don't know how to react or what to say when confronted with mortality. Some push it out of their minds as some of you are doing now. Some are too distracted with the goings on of life to stop long enough to think about the end of life.
But God is speaking to us through Danni every day whether she says anything or not, he is in control and he is the giver of breath! Today, if you hear what he's speaking to you through my words, don't harden your hearts towards him. Confess to him your need for him and invite him into your heart; acknowledge him as Creator God of the Universe, acknowledge that Jesus is his son and that he died and was raised to life to save us and he will give you new life.
He'll set you free from the bondage of darkness, sin and shame. He'll bring you into his marvelous light out of blindness and free you from your prison and release you from the dark dungeon your life has become. I know this from experience for he did it for me.
If you think,"My life is okay, I don't need him or this," that's fine but Danni will still be here to remind you that life can change at any time and your life is in God's hands.
He decides if you will take you next breath. Are you ready?