Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Pray Specifically

Here's where we are with my mom.  Her body is still making a LOT of fluid as it heals from the surgery, which is normal.  The problem is, more fluid is draining out of her body through the drain tube than she can replace by eating and drinking.  My mom is a VERY TINY lady, and she doesn't drink in a WEEK what they want her to drink in a DAY.  So, the doctor has decided to cap the drain and see if he can get her body to absorb the fluid instead of her body taking the "easy route" and just passing it out through the drain.  Somehow we need to get mom over this "hump" so she can gain some strength, get out of the hospital, and eventually GET BACK HOME!!


We need her body to absorb this excess fluid and NOT just accumulate in her abdomen like it did the last time.

We do NOT want the fluid to grow bacteria, so pray against infection.

We want mom's appetite to INCREASE so she can begin to build up some strength.

We need her to be able to easily take her medicine.

We need the JOY of the LORD to fill her soul.  This has been a long process and frankly she gets very discouraged sometimes.  She is sick and tired of being sick and tired.  She needs the Holy Spirit to come upon her like a mighty rushing wind!!!

I know that our God is able to do ALL THIS AND MORE and
I ask you to agree with me for these things.

We need to get mom stable, which is the first step to getting her OUT OF THE HOSPITAL, which is the first step to 

Prayers appreciated for safe travels for my dad and brother-in-law, as they are headed back to Houston tomorrow.  Hopefully by the first of the week mom can be out of the hospital and in the hotel, and then after a few days we can bring her home.  I'll head down there the first of the week and stay until I can bring her home.

Your prayers are appreciated beyond words.  My heart is so full of love for all of you that have prayed continually for my mother.  God is good, and He answers prayer. 


Monday, April 24, 2017

Still In Houston

My mom is still in Houston, Texas.  Nothing super serious, but some "hiccups" as the surgeon calls them that have prevented her from coming home.

Last Wednesday she had to be re-admitted to the hospital to have the drain put back in.  The fluid was accumulating faster than her little body could get rid of it, and her white count was a little elevated, so they put the drain back in, got her started on IV antibiotics, and kept her overnight for observation.  They released her to go back to the hotel Thursday afternoon.  We had a "changing of the guard" on Friday.  One sister and my dad headed home.  My other sister arrived to take care of mom.  Friday and Saturday weren't the best days as mom just couldn't seem to get over the hump from having the drain reinserted.  She had no appetite, very weak, and in pain.  So, by Saturday evening she was dehydrated and my sister took her to the Emergency Room.  They readmitted her and she's been in the hospital ever since.  

Yesterday the chaplain of MD Anderson came to see mom on his day off and prayed with her.  Since then, I can tell you that we've had a BIG TURNAROUND!!!  Mom has eaten better.  She has got up and walked.  She has been able to take her oral meds and keep them down and that is HUGE for mom as swallowing any kind of medicine is a struggle for her.

My mom has been in Houston, Texas for 22 days.  She had surgery on April 6th.

So here I go again, asking you to PRAISE THE LORD WITH US FOR ALL OF THE MIRACLES HE HAS PERFORMED.  Mom's liver is back to 100% of the size it was before they removed 70% of it on April 6th!!!  While she has had some minor setbacks, NO MAJOR COMPLICATIONS!!!  Mom is tired and weak and she wants to go home, but the surgeon wants to make ABSOLUTELY SURE she is stable before she makes the 750 mile trip back home.

If you've been praying for my mom, I ask you to continue.  We aren't settling for 1/2 of a miracle, we want it all!!  We want complete healing and we will keep praying for it.  

Please pray for strength for my mom, both physical and mental.  As you can imagine this surgery, and 22 days away from home, have taken their toll.  Pray for no infection, and for the fluids to be reabsorbed so they can remove the drain.  Pray for her appetite to be strong, and her stomach to be settled.  Pray for ease of taking the medications.  Pray for her to do lots of walking.

And pray for my sister that is down there with mom.  It is exhausting being a care giver.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart  for your continued prayers.  Please know that I am a "pray-er" and if you need prayer for something I am honored to lift your need before the Lord.  He never fails!!!

I hope to be able to tell you SOON that she is headed home.  In the meantime, I pick up my beautiful daughter from the airport later this week, and she graduates from college on Saturday!   Pictures to come!!!

May the Lord bless each and every one of you.  He is good.

Monday, April 17, 2017

The Resurrected King is Resurrecting Me!!!

I'm so sorry I'm just now updating you on my mom's big surgery.  Everything went VERY WELL!!!  The surgeon was pleased with the outcome and mom is doing great.  They removed 70% of her liver during the surgery and there were no complications.  Mom is still in Houston, as the surgeon wanted her to stay a couple weeks after the surgery just to make certain everything is good.  She has an appointment Wednesday morning, and if everything is good, which we expect it to be, they will head home.  PLEASE KEEP MY MOM IN YOUR PRAYERS!!!  Her body is working hard to regrow her liver, and it makes her feel very tired and weak.  As you can imagine, it is very discouraging to not feel good for a long time.  So please lift my mom in prayer for complete physical healing, and also prayer for God to encourage her through the coming weeks . The tiredness will last for several weeks, which is a good thing because it means her liver is healing, but that's a long time to not feel very well, so keep those prayers coming!!!

Happy Easter to everyone.  What a day.  What a reminder of my Savior's love!!  I'm sharing my Facebook post from yesterday:

Because He died for me knowing every sin I would commit. Because even though I have failed Him many times, He has never failed me. Because He promised to never leave me or forsake me. Because death and the grave could not hold Him. Because He is seated at the right hand of God interceding for me today. Because His final breath now lives in me. Because His grace is sufficient and His strength is made perfect in my weakness. Because my hope, in this world and for eternity, is found in Him alone. This is why I am a follower of Jesus Christ. "I am He who lives and was dead and BEHOLD I AM ALIVE FOREVERMORE! And I have the keys of hell and of death." Revelation 1:18

My new favorite song:

Please turn up your speakers and let your Spirit come alive as you realize what a gift the love of Jesus is!!!

I can't thank you all enough for lifting my family in prayer these past 9 months.  Yes, it's been 9 months since my mom's diagnosis.  We've had good days and bad.   Days of feeling strong in our faith, and days where we wondered where God was in all of this.  But we KNOW that He is with us.  We trust Him!!!


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Prayers Needed

It's finally here.  The day we have waited for since last fall.  On Thursday morning, April 6th, my mother will have her "big" surgery at MD Anderson in Houston.  The surgeon will remove approximately 70% of her liver where the remaining cancerous tumors are located.    

My folks are already in Houston, and she had blood drawn and a CT scan yesterday.  Today mom has no appointments, so they are hanging out enjoying the beautiful weather down there.  Tomorrow they meet with the surgeon and the anesthesiologist, and the surgery will be Thursday morning.
Since this journey began we have asked God for complete healing for mom.  I know that no one lives forever, and neither will my mom.  But we do not in any way believe that God brings sickness upon His children.  His Word says the prayer of faith SHALL heal the sick, and that is what we stand upon.  

Today I ask once again that you pray with faith, confident that God is the same yesterday, today and forever, asking for my mom's healing in Jesus name.  We are praying for God to guide the surgeon, the nurses, the anesthesiologist, everyone that will come in contact with my mother during the surgery and her recovery.  We are asking for a completely routine surgery.  We are praying for NO COMPLICATIONS AND NO INFECTION!!  We are praying for a SPEEDY and COMPLETE RECOVERY.  And we are praying that the cancer will be TOTALLY GONE, NEVER TO RETURN AGAIN.

Before my mom's surgery in February I believe that God gave me the verse Exodus 14:13  "Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever."  I have taken that verse to heart, and truly believe that after the surgery on Thursday, there will be no cancer in my mother's body and IT WILL NEVER RETURN.

If God has another plan for my mother, then I will accept it.  I trust Him.  But until He shows me differently, that is my prayer for my mother, that the cancer BE GONE FOREVER IN JESUS NAME and I am asking for you to agree with me.

I fly to Houston Wednesday afternoon to be there for the surgery on Thursday, so prayers for a safe trip will be appreciated.  Mom has to stay in the hospital for 5-7 days post surgery, then she will be in a hotel in Houston for another week, just so the doctor's can keep an eye on things.  I'll be staying there for the first week, and then my sister will come down to stay the week mom is in the hotel recovering.  Please keep my mom, Donna, in your prayers over the next few weeks.  This is a big surgery and the doctors say the recovery will take some time.  We are praying God shows off in a big way, and mom recovers completely and much faster than they think!!!

Please remember to pray for my cousin, Cami, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in January.  She has 3 chemo treatments behind her, 3 more to go before she has surgery.  And just yesterday I found out that the mother of a blogging friend of mine, Shelly Wildman, was diagnosed with cancer last month.  Shelly's mom is having surgery on Wednesday, April 5th, and I know she would appreciate your prayers as well.  You can check out Shelly's newsletter HERE.

So many need a touch from Jesus.  So many need healing and encouragement.  So many need comfort.  This road called life is not easy.  But a life lived with Jesus as your guide is a life lived well.  He never promised it would be easy, but He promised to never leave us or forsake us.  These past few months have been extremely difficult for our family, but we know that He is in control.  I fail him many times, but my heart's desire is to serve Him.  One day I want to hear those words . . . "well done, good and faithful servant."

Thank you all so very, very much for your prayers.  They are appreciated beyond words.  And if you have a few minutes, click on the video below and check out my new favorite song.


Friday, March 24, 2017

Finally Friday

Man, this has been a long week!!  Could be that I'm extremely busy at work.  Could be that the weather has been SO NICE and I'm stuck in the office.  Could be that our beautiful daughter flies home for a visit next week!!!  (Six more days but who's counting??!!)

My mom has been feeling great.  She has had no side effects from the portal embolization!  Thank you, Jesus!!!  We are praying that the left side of her liver is growing so it can "carry the load" once the right side of her liver is removed two weeks from yesterday!!  I can't thank you all enough for praying for my mother.  The Bible tells us that the prayer of faith SHALL heal the sick.  And I believe that with my whole heart.

Mom did have to go to the doctor yesterday.  She has had a pain in her right leg for a few days.  It is not a blood clot, and the doctor isn't concerned that it is in any way related to her cancer, but he sent her for an x-ray yesterday afternoon and we're waiting on results (hopefully today!)  Please agree with us in prayer that this is nothing but a pulled muscle and that the leg pain will just go away!  I think she just over did it earlier this week.  She has felt so bad all winter, that now that she's feeling good she's trying to make up for lost time!  I keep telling her to take it SLOW, but she doesn't listen to me very well hehe!!

I would appreciate prayers for my Uncle Ronnie who lost his girlfriend of over 30 years this week.  She left a son and several grandchildren and I know they are heartbroken.

We need RAIN here in Missouri, and it looks like a big rain is headed our way later today and through the weekend.  Thank you Lord for the rain!!!

Have a blessed weekend everyone!!!  God is good!!!!!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Clear and 15 Degrees

We finally have some sunshine this morning, but it sure was chilly.  

15 Degrees 

I hope all of our little baby calves
are staying warm!

You'll notice there's not much green grass.
It's still pretty much winter here in Missouri.

But the temperatures are supposed to warm up a bit this weekend (hello 60 degrees) and hopefully those little green shoots will start springing up all over the place.

The cows are tired of eating hay.

They want green grass!!!

We sure do need some rain!!

Happy Wednesday Everyone!!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Just My Thoughts

I hear a lot of uproar lately about what IS and ISN'T appropriate for a Christian.  I hear people talking about the Disney movie Beauty and the Beast.  I hear people questioning the movie The Shack.  Should they see it or shouldn't they?  What about Fifty Shades?  Most of the girls I know RAVED over the books and can't wait to see the movies.  Is that OK??

I sure can't give you an answer straight from God's lips, but I can give you my opinion, and I'd love to hear yours.  Please don't leave a mean spirited comment, I'll delete it.  But I would welcome your Biblical opinion.  I want to live a life that brings honor to my Savior.

First of all, I want to say that my opinion is just that, my opinion.  And frankly,  your opinion is just your opinion too.  I know a lot of Christian people who love Jesus, and yet their actions and lives look different from mine.  We all have things we think are "OK" and things we think aren't "OK" for Christians, but is that really as it should be?  I mean, shouldn't we all be on the same page when it comes to what is and isn't sin??  Cause we're all gonna be judged by God and I don't think he has separate standards based on my denomination or my opinion.  Just my thoughts.

I don't drink alcohol.  Not a drop.  I don't drink beer.  I don't have a glass of wine with dinner.  None.  Can I tell you that the Bible absolutely forbids a Christian drinking alcohol?  Nope.  But nowhere in the Bible do I see Christians encouraged to use alcohol.  Except for a couple of verses that talk about using wine for medicinal purposes, all of the verses that talk about alcohol are warning people against the evils of excess drinking.  Lots of lives were ruined by someone abusing alcohol, lots of families torn apart by someone abusing alcohol.  So why play with fire??  I mean, if you want to have a glass of wine with your dinner I guess that's your business, but why would you even let yourself get in the habit of drinking a liquid that alters your mind, and can become an addiction?  I have read blogs that purport to be written by Christian ladies and I see pictures of them smiling with wine glasses in their hands and the next post is about Jesus.   This bothers me.  Just my thoughts.

I didn't read the series of books "Fifty Shades of Grey," and I promise you I won't be reading them.  I can assure you I haven't seen any of the movies, don't intend to.  And yet I see on Facebook ladies commenting about the books and getting together to go see the movies . . . and MOST of those same people commenting about those books and going to see the movies are ladies who attend church every Sunday and if you asked them if they were Christian they would say "yes."  So what kind of witness do you have to the unsaved when you're sitting in the same movie theater watching what pretty much boils down to pornography?  The Bible is very clear on what we are to focus on:  Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things."  Girls Fifty Shades is neither noble or right or pure.  Just my thoughts.

The Shack.  I have read the book "The Shack."  It was very thought provoking.  Is it gospel?  Nope.  Do I believe God is a black woman?  Nope.  Did I enjoy the book?  Yes, I actually did.  It made me think.  But it is not what I base my faith on.  I base my faith on one book . . . the Bible.  The problem is, there is a big group of people who read that book or watched the movie and they think it's Biblical . . . . that same big group of people who believe that
"Cleanliness is next to Godliness and "Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder" are really in the Bible.  And so these things lull the unsaved into a false sense of security.  Jesus loves everybody (He does).  Everybody's going to heaven (they aren't).  All roads lead to Jesus, you just need to do what feels right for you (uh, NO, THAT IS NOT IN THE BIBLE).  They think to themselves, well so and so goes to church, and they're here at this movie, so if it's OK for them, it's OK for me.  I don't know if I will go see the movie or not because while I don't think The Shack is evil, what message am I sending to the unsaved if I go see that movie??  Just my thoughts.

Gonna go way out on a limb here and say that I do not believe we, the New Testament Church, are obligated to give 10% of our income to the church a/k/a tithing.  I believe tithing was a very specific Old Testament directive to a very specific group of people so that the priests of the temple would be supported and Jesus did away with that, along with all those animal sacrifices when he was resurrected.  Do I believe we are to give?  YES, ABSOLUTELY.  I attend church and I put money in the offering every month (I get paid once a month so I give my offering once a month).  I contribute monthly to an orphanage.  I contribute monthly to a fund that provides food to local kids who don't always have all of the food they need. I contribute to lots of very worthy causes that help people.  But I don't believe we are under the Old Testament law of tithing (and I'd be very interested to hear your Biblical comments on this).  Just my thoughts.

These are just a few examples of things that Christians differ on.  While I believe the Bible is black and white on about 90% of issues, there are some grey areas.  But I think the church has tried so hard to be RELEVANT that we've allowed ourselves to make those grey areas MUCH bigger than just 10%.  We don't want to offend anybody because they might not come to church anymore. Well if we aren't preaching the truth in love then what good does it do for them to spend one hour sitting in a building with a cross on the top of it?  Churches exist to call sinners to repentance, and to teach Christians how to live a Godly life.  Jesus offended a lot of people because He loved them enough to tell them the truth. I think all pastors should do the same thing.  I think most churches are very social.  And while there's nothing wrong with being social, being social has nothing to do with worship or serving God or witnessing to the unsaved.  A men's group that spends most of its time going hunting and to sporting events is just a club.  If the bulk of the time those men are together isn't spent talking about Jesus or studying the Bible, then I think, again, we've lulled ourselves into thinking that any activity under the umbrella of a "church group" is Godly.  Friends I do not believe that.  And I'm not just picking on the guys here.  Ladies do the same thing.  If your ladies group spends most of their time on a shopping trip, or going out to eat, it's OK, but let's not convince ourselves that this is getting us closer to Jesus.  You've had fun, you've been entertained, but you haven't done anything for the kingdom of God.  And hear me, I'm not saying that you can't have fun with your Christian friends.  YOU SHOULD enjoy spending time with Christian friends outside the church.  But how much time are you spending studying the Word?  How much time are you spending witnessing to people who are dying and going to hell??

And don't get me started on youth groups.  We are entertaining our young people right to the gates of hell.  Again, NOTHING WRONG WITH GETTING THE CHURCH KIDS TOGETHER TO HAVE SOME FUN!!!  But if we are spending more time entertaining them so they keep coming back, than reminding them that heaven is real and so is hell, and either you belong to Jesus or you don't, then we are encouraging a generation to think that unless you're a murderer you're going to heaven, and that the Bible is open to interpretation, and that all roads lead to Jesus. And I am convinced that a HUGE PERCENTAGE of people who sit in our churches every day really believe this. . . . . . at least that's how they live their lives.

So after all that, THIS IS THE ONLY OPINION THAT MATTERS.  The Bible says this in Matthew Chapter 7 . . .
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

This post is entitled "Just My Thoughts" and that is exactly what I have shared.  MY THOUGHTS.  If I'm wrong, then I want God to open my eyes to the truth.  Cause I believe we answer for every single thing we've done or thought.  And this may sound harsh, but what kind of FRUIT DO YOU BEAR if you're a wine drinking, Fifty Shades reading Christian?  How is that the "narrow gate" that FEW ARE FINDING?  Those Fifty Shades books sold MILLIONS OF COPIES.  That gate seems awfully wide to me.  The Bible tells us in Philippians 2:12 "work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."  

If I've offended you I'm really sorry.  I didn't intend to.  But I think if we call ourselves Christians, then we need to LIVE EVERY DAY IN WAYS THAT BRING GLORY AND HONOR TO JESUS.  Don't go where He wouldn't go.  Don't read what He wouldn't read.  Don't do what He wouldn't do.

Just my thoughts . . . . . .