A Normal Day

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Rosh Hashanah Thoughts and Prayers

September 30, 2008

I’ve been learning a lot about Rosh Hashanah in the last few days. It’s the Jewish New Year but unlike our New Year it’s a time to inspect oneself and a time of repentance. What an appropriate thing to do especially during this time of financial crisis that our nation is in. We are truly a nation under judgment. Today in the Jewish tradition is a Day of Judgment.

The Lord took me to two scriptures this morning, Matthew 25:5 and Jeremiah 14. Matthew 25:5 is the story of the ten virgins verse 5 says, “The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.” This scripture is prophetic and refers to the second coming of Christ, he is the bridegroom and the virgins are the church.

As I thought about Rosh Hashanah and the Day of Judgment I was challenged to ask the Lord to wake me up where I have fallen asleep. I asked him to fill me (my lamp) with oil and forgive all my sins.

Then as I went to Jeremiah 14 and I read how the people were experiencing a severe drought and I thought again about the crisis our nation is enduring at this present time. In a sense, we are also experiencing a severe drought only in finances. In Jeremiah 14 the Lord is pretty ticked off at the people and why? Verse 10 reveals the answer…"This is what the Lord says about this people: “They greatly love to wander; they do not restrain their feet. So the Lord does not accept them; he will now remember their wickedness and punish them for their sins.”

Then God says an amazing thing to Jeremiah in verse 11, he tells Jeremiah “Do not pray for the well being of this people…” Oh my, that’s bad! These were God’s chosen people he was talking about! All because they went their own way and didn’t control where their feet took them!

Another interesting thing happens in verses 13-16 of chapter 14, Jeremiah tells God that the prophets are saying that famine and sword won’t come upon the people and God lets Jeremiah know in no uncertain terms that they are not speaking from him and that God didn’t send them or tell them to say such things.


As I was watching the news today, top economists were saying, “we just have to have this bailout thing happen” and that it would make everything easier. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know if it’s right or wrong and I don’t feel either way about it because I believe that God has this whole thing planned out and I believe he will have his way, but I’ve also heard them say that it won’t affect the guy on the street and our money is safe if it is federally insured by the FDIC. Are they saying we won’t have to endure famine or have to deal with the sword in some way shape or form? You decide.

These are just interesting things to think about. I don’t know why God brought this to my attention as I was praying today but my inclination is to repent for the sins of our nation and ask God to cleanse me from my own sin. To ask God for mercy and to fill me with his Spirit (oil) to be ready for whatever is coming to our nation.

Wake us up, God! I pray that the Lord will forgive his people for allowing their feet to go their own way, running to idols and sin rather than to God’s open arms of love. Man, I’m guilty! What a crazy thing we do! God forgive me, forgive us Lord!

What shall I Say...

September 24, 2008

Danni is holding her own. She is pretty well bed fast. Sitting up on her own is very painful so she hasn't been out of bed for a while.

Her spirits are good and she's hanging in there. Good thing for her laptop and cell phone, they are her contact with the outside world. She likes to play her zoo game, she designs zoos and tries to keep all the people and animals happy.

Some time ago a man came to the door with pillows that match the chair that a local business owner made for her and I just wanted to thank him for those, they are the perfect size and shape to put behind her back when she needs to lay on one side or the other. Another one of God's provisions for her to keep her comfortable.

Her blood sugars are still between 200 and 300 most days which is still high but I got the neurosurgeon to lower her dosage of steroids so we will see if that helps.

Other than that she is resting comfortably.

Praises Along the Way--Special Delivery

September 20, 2008

Glory be to God she's home! She came as a special delivery from the Parkview Noble Ambulance crew. She's feeling much better and we are so glad to have her home again after such a long night and day.

When she got home we put her in wheely to get her back to bed but she said she wanted to stay in the chair and color at the table. Yea!

I'm so proud of how she handled herself this go round, she made medical decisions for herself and was brave enough to come home from Ft Wayne in the ambulance all by herself! What a trooper! We had gone home this morning to get some rest and prepare to have her home.

I want to acknowledge God in these set of circumstances because he was the one who clearly orchestrated this whole trip and let me assure you he took excellent care of Danni!

Matthew 6:25-34 says, "Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly father feeds them.

Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lillies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying "What shall we eat?" or "What shall we drink?" or "What shall we wear?" For after all these things the Gentiles seek.

For your heavenly Father knows you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. (NKJ version)

God can handle things without my help, his provision is seamless and he's proved that to me this weekend. His provision is perfect and more beautiful than all the flowers of the field! All Glory to God! Thank you for your provision in our life. You go before us and hem us in behind and make the way smooth for us casting every mountain into the sea. Praise your Name!

Done........Already?

September 20, 2008 6:40am

Matt and I fell asleep in surgical waiting. The doctor shook my knee and woke me with a start. She's done and already is feeling better. They moved her to recovery for an hour and then to a room. She can eat after 9am and if she feels okay doc will let her go home today.

What a good decision she made to come to the hospital last night. I'm proud of her! She was doing a great job taking care of herself, telling us we need to go to the ER, by ambulance and telling the doctors and nurses that she was in need of pain meds.

She even said we could go home and get some sleep before she had talked to the doctor in Kendallville! I said, "I don't think so but thanks!" No way mama bear would leave her there alone! Thank you, thank you, thank you Jesus!

The Long Night

September 20, 2008 6am

We took Danni to the emergency room in Kendallville via ambulance because she was having pain in her kidney. We thought that maybe she was having another kidney stone. Tests confirmed that she had a 7mm size kidney stone stuck in the tube coming from her kidney.

So her urologist "just happened" to be on call and he instructed the ER doctor in Kendallville to send her on to Parkview Main. So by ambulance she was transported to Ft. Wayne and the urologist came in to see her in the ER there around 3:30am.

She went into surgery at 6 am this morning to have a stint put into the tube so that it could drain until she has this "sonic boom" procedure to break the stone into sand sized bits then when everything is clear the stint will come out. Three separate hospital visits. We have to put the stint in first, then we set up a time to come back and do the the boom thing. I hope this makes sense, we've been up all night.

Anyways, she's anemic and her platelets are down to 62000 which is low so those issues will have to be dealt with before the boom thing. Soooo, the good news is that maybe she will come home today. God is looking out for us. He's faithful! I'll write more as we know more.

Much love to you all in Christ.

Danni's Resting

September 18, 2008

This morning is a sleepy morning. Danni hasn't been feeling well today. Her back hurts up near her shoulders and she was nauseated today so she's been sleeping quite a bit. I'm in her room sitting in my chair listening to her deep breathing. She's sleeping pretty good.

Yesterday was a struggle as she had a bed malfunction in the night and "it tried to eat me!" she said. So we had to have the bed people out to replace it and she had to be in a wheel chair for quite some time waiting. She did a lot of sliding back and forth on her transfer board from the bed to the wheelchair then back again so maybe that's why she's sore today.

She's still very weak and has only stood with help one time since coming home from the hospital. She's not very happy when she has to get out of bed because she says it's too much work but I've been trying to encourage her to move around.

Her sugar has been consistently over 200 for the last few days, it doesn't seem like the insulin is working very well. She's up to 120 units a day hopefully we can get it under control soon.

Every day I wake up thinking, will this be the day when God heals her? I will wait patiently for him to move. We need a miracle!

I'm supposed to get out of the house today, her grandma is coming to sit with her but I may not leave if she's not feeling better. "You need to go," she says to me but I would probably be wondering about her all day. She never thinks of herself. She's always concerned about me or the other family members.

Thanks for your continued prayers.

Praises Along the Way-- Fear on the Run!

September 15, 2008

The Lord has been teaching me about the effects of love on fear for some time. I don’t know about you but fear is something I have to deal with everyday. “Do not fear” God says to us over and over in the Word. As I was thinking about this subject several scriptures came to mind.

The first one was 1John 4:13-19We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.


If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the Day of Judgment, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love.

But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.”

Wow what a loaded scripture… I acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God, therefore God lives in me and I don’t have to fear the Day of Judgment because, the word says, in this world we are like him.

He’s saying to us really the only thing we should fear is facing judgment day without acknowledging that Jesus is the Son of God. Fear and punishment go hand in hand.
If I acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God, the word says that God who is love lives in me and I in him and there truly is nothing to fear. If God is for us who can be against us?


Then I thought that if perfect love drives out all fear what or who is love? The scripture above tells us God is Love. But what is love? 1Cor. 13 came to my mind so I went there to see what the word says about love.

1Cor 13:4-8 says, “ Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.

LOVE NEVER FAILS…”

There were several things God showed me about this scripture that I had never seen before such as, “Love is patient, love is kind.” Right there it tells you exactly what love is, the rest of the scriptures tells you what love does not do and what it always does but these first few words say exactly what love is.

So I doubt we can “love” cheesecake as I have said before because according to the truth of the word love is a commitment word. A commitment to be patient and kind to another person. Love is an action. I think that I lust after cheesecake would be a better phrase to use. Ew, that’s ugly when you actually think about what you are saying.

Love is relational. The next time you tell someone you love them, think of it as you are saying to them that you are committing yourself to be patient and kind with them all the time. Wow that puts things into perspective!

The other thing I realized is that this is who God is; these are the ways he always responds in regard to us. God is patient, he is kind, and he doesn’t envy or boast. He is not proud or rude or self-seeking or easily angered and he keeps no record of wrongs. God doesn't delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. God always protects, trusts, hopes and perseveres. GOD NEVER FAILS!

If I want to know more about him this scripture is very informative. I’m sure there are a thousand and one things in this scripture that I have just missed but so far this is what he’s shown me. Now, back to the perfect love casts out all fear thing. When I am tempted to fear, what if I was patient and kind in the face of that temptation? Would it go away? Would I be able to stand my ground?

Strange as it seems it works! When the temptation to fear came I was patient through the testing and remained kind to those around me, it worked! Don’t get me wrong, I’m in no way saying I’ve arrived or that I’ve perfected this art but it is very interesting food for thought and it certainly has changed the way I will use the word “love” in the future.

God has been teaching me about love with Danni. There are so many things as a caregiver that is pure acts of love. I thought I knew what love was but I didn’t. Through this experience I am learning the act of love; the giving of me to another person like Jesus did and continues to do. I’m learning to be more like him. As a mother I guess I did these things all along but I never connected it with the word as I have through these waters.

I don’t get it all right but there is not condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1) because walking after the Spirit is a learning process.

I’m grateful, Lord, for all you are teaching me and those around me during this time of trial and tribulation. Thank you for your love for me no matter what. Thank you for your great patience with me as I toddle through your precepts learning them as a child learns to walk on their own. I love you Lord, I commit to be patient and kind to you and treat you as you treat me as you lead me through this land. In the fullness of Jesus name I pray these things. Amen.

What thoughts, scriptures and experiences come to mind as you have read this? Please share so that we can all be edified!

A Day of Rest

September 13, 2008

Today we are having a day of rest. Go no where! Do nothing! It's been wonderful. Everyone needs days like these. Danni has been resting today as well.

Her sugar is coming down so thanks for all the prayers, but I can sure tell when the insulin wears off it goes back up again. But at least it's controlling it.

Please pray for healing for her skin and incisions, she hasn't been able to get up as much as last time because of being weak. But she's still working on her leg and arm exercises.



Back Home Again

September 11, 2008

Actually, she came home yesterday but it took the rest of the afternoon to get our checkbook in order, do some work for the township, get her med schedule organized, and a thousand other things.

It is soooooo gooooood to have her home. Today I got to get out for a while and her grandmother took care of her. It was wonderful to do something that didn't involve a hospital!

She's resting and working on her leg and arm strengthening exercises. She's slowly healing and we are trying to get her blood sugar under control. This afternoon she was up to 371! Normal range for her should be 80 to 140. She's getting 100 units of insulin a day up from 80 units. I know diabetics that get 40 units a day. I hope this turns around soon.

It seems we are almost in the swing of things again. Our biggest challenges have been transferring her from one place to another, learning new moving techniques so as to save our backs and of course getting her blood sugar under control.

Even Jessi and Atlee have been helping me position her in bed and run here and there for this or that. It's truly going to take teamwork on all our parts. I think its very good for us to work together. The kids are learning all kinds of wonderful life lessons
.

Praises Along the Way--Fun Online

September 8, 2008

Last night Danni and I and her grandmother in Florida had a great time online on instant messaging. Technology is so great! Danni's new laptop has a web cam and so does mine so we could see each other and talk to each other through the Internet.

We giggled and sent crazy pictures and drawings to each other then we played games and put a puzzle together all online. What a comfort to me to actually see her from home as she was in her room at the hospital and know she was well and having some fun.

It was wonderful to tell her goodnight and kiss the web cam and see her reaction....... hilarious!
"Ew" she said!

I praise God for the gifts he's given us to make all this more bearable. He has blessed us abundantly!

Danni is weak and healing very slowly but her incisions look good and hopefully she will be able to come home tomorrow. She has to stay here one more day because she has another days worth of iv antibiotics. Thanks again for all your prayers and thoughts for us.

Praises Along the Way--Lord over the Flood

September 6, 2008

Last evening Matt's mom went to the hospital with back pain and she came home yesterday with an appointment for a specialist. Last night Matt's dad went to the hospital with pneumonia. Last night Danni had a more serious surgery than we expected. We would have never guessed that she would get a new shunt. (I'm referring to my last blog).

How crazy our life has gotten. In some ways I can relate to the hurricane people who also have to deal with flood waters, just a different kind. Everyone goes through floods in life that attempt to drown them be it spiritual, physical, mental or emotional. Most times all of those things are involved because you can't separate them, they are all rolled into one.

I was reading a scripture on a web site I check every day and I was encouraged by the scripture they had posted. I read it every day because it seems that the scripture always speaks directly to my circumstances. Today it was Psalm 29:10-The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord sits enthroned as King forever.

What an awesome promise. I know the Lord has led me to this scripture before but it was good for me to read it again and with the circumstances we've been through in the last 2 or 3 days I'd say it was very appropriate. I love how God gives you what you need when you need it.

What a comfort to know that no matter what happens He is still in control. I give him thanks and praise and once again I put my trust in him.

Thank God!!! He is in control!!!

More than Expected

September 5, 2008

Well, they put a new shunt in. Yeah, we were surprised too. But I'm glad the doctor was extra careful. They put the end of the new shunt back in her belly through a very small incision in her belly button.

They said where the doctor took out the end of the shunt last week hadn't even begun to heal. The steroids and her blood sugar are the big issues again. But she has a great team of doctors giving their all. We're very grateful for their loving care.

Thanks for all your love and prayers as well.

Back to the Table

September 5, 2008

Danni just went into surgery, her doctors both had emergencies that they had to take care of so Danni had to wait. It's about 4pm now.

The plan is to put the end of the shunt elsewhere in her belly but they are also prepared to put it into a vein as well. I hope they don't have to do that but she doesn't have many options.

The surgery should take about and hour or so. I'll let you know.

So Far So Good!

September 5, 2008

Yea! Her platelets are up over the safe mark and the surgery is scheduled for sometime around 2 today. It will be good to get rid of the external drain thing!

I'll keep you all up to date.

Breaking News

September 4, 2008

Later today Danni saw another doctor who deals with blood issues and he said that they were going to give her platelets through her IV. They hope to boost hers and get her ready so that she can have surgery on Friday.

We'll see, maybe she can keep her surgery date after all.

Surgery Delayed

September 4, 2008

The doctors are going to try something a little less invasive. They have a new plan. They want to go in through a couple of small incisions in her belly and put the end of the shunt in a new position.

The general surgeon thinks that the incision in her belly didn't heal fast enough. He doesn't think that her body isn't processing the fluid. The steroids hinder her healing but she has to have them to keep the swelling down on her brain.

They haven't found any infection yet. So that's good.

They were going to operate Friday around 2:30 but her blood platelets are too low right now to do surgery. So they may have to postpone the surgery until next week if her platelets don't come up to an acceptable level by tomorrow.

Once again God is in control.

Praises Along the Way--Songs of Deliverance

September 3, 2008

Danni's spirits are a little better today. Her doctor said that there are two options in his mind but we are still waiting for her to see the general surgeon. Her one option is to clamp off the shunt and see if she really needs it (not a good option) she's still draining quite a bit into the external drain or route the shunt through a vein into her heart so her blood can carry the fluid away.

Neither of these sound like good alternatives. No wonder she and the doctor had such reservations about the shunt. What a mess. We wait for her deliverance. We know what it feels like to be in the "lions den" with death breathing down our necks.

I was reading in Job the other day chapter 1 verses 20-21 At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell on the ground in worship and said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised."

I was blown away by the way Job responded to the complete tragedy of his life. This response came on the heals of four servants one after another bringing devastating news about his finances (livestock) being stolen, his servants being killed and worst of all every one of his children dying in a horrible accident.

And yet Job WORSHIPPED the Lord. Wow. I was speechless. So I thought that I would follow Job's example and worship and give praise to the Lord for who he is and the simple fact that no matter what I encounter in life HE IS WORTHY OF PRAISE.

I didn't feel like praising God but when I did an amazing sensation came over me, like power was being released into our circumstances.

Whatever circumstances you find yourself in today, if you are overwhelmed or if you are not, I challenge you to lift your hands and worship Jesus and see if your experience is the same.

It lifted the burden and helped me to refocus on the one who could bring our deliverance. He is in control. Sometimes I forget that and need to be reminded.

I'd be interested to hear testimonies of what you've experienced. God bless.

Doctor Talk

September 2, 2008

We talked with the doctor he has a few ideas he wants to talk over with some other doctors. At this point they are saying there is no infection. That's all we know. When I asked the doctor why her body wasn't taking care of the fluid he said he didn't know.

He will schedule a consult with a general surgeon for her. We wait some more.

Danni is really ready to come home. This time around has been rough.

Some Good News

September 2, 2008

We heard from the doctor's assistant that so far there is no infection in the spinal fluid sample they took. My thinking is that if there isn't infection in the spinal fluid then there can't be infection in the shunt. However, this is just my thinking and not a doctor's thinking.

Her doctor is doing surgery at another hospital today so we will see him this afternoon. I'm hoping he can answer my question as to why her body wasn't taking care of the fluid that was draining from the shunt into her abdomen. Hopefully, he can give me some answers.

The incision on her belly is doing much better, maybe we caught it in time. So many things on this journey have been caught "just in time". I thank God for watching over us and keeping us.

We're going for a walk now so I'll write more later after we talk to the doctor.

Holding Her Own

September 1, 2008

Danni is still in the hospital waiting for some tests to come through to see if she truly has infection and if so what kind of infection. If there is infection in the shunt she'll have to have a new one or some kind of alteration will have to be done to the one she has.

I have been spending the weekend with our other children thanks to the kindness of her step-mother who stayed faithfully with her the last three days. I appreciate her so much, without her and Danni's grandparents who have also been a tremendous help to me, I would have had a long weekend.

Tuesday I'll be right back at it though bright and early to try to be there when the doctor comes to see her, you have to get up early and be quick to catch these busy guys. Danni is ready to come home but I think it will probably be at least a week.

I'd like to say Happy Birthday to our lovely daughter Mallorie, she's 20 today!

We'll probably spend the day resting up for the week, thanks for your continued prayers and thoughts for us. God Bless!!