Wednesday, February 3, 2010

7 months and a saint

For some reason today I actually realized that it has been 7 months since Jacob's accident. Jacob reminded me that one doctor at Kaiser had unfortunately told Jake that he would have his hair back by the end of the year. Long, long journey. But we are in some ways breathing easier with Jake's pending surgery. He has a pre-op appointment next week. We are praying that nothing would put off this surgery (again). Jake is of course a little pessimistic. But it feels like we are moving to the next stage of this journey. Debbie is back at her part-time job as a teacher's aid. I am back into job hunting mode - excited about what is next.

Since both David and Natalie have made tremendous progress I have moved them off of the "critical" prayer list. They most certainly still need our prayer as they enter the time of rehab, adjustment, medical procedures, therapy etc etc. Please continue to support them. There is a time in each tragic journey that we move back to life. The person is no longer critical and yet "normal" life has been redefined. There is still so much to deal with physically, spiritually, and psychologically. It is easier in a way for people to come around the person when they are in ICU and even the hospital in that there is a way to easily visit but we are more willing to drop what we are doing and see someone who is in such a critical state. Recovery is a very lonely time and can be a slow progress trying to get back to "normal" life.

I had a special treat today. I was able to spend about an hour with a saint. Margaret is 95 and grew up in the Ozark mountains of Arkansas on a farm. She asked me to come and here her story. She is an amazing lady. When I was pastor at she was always up in the front - always smiling - always joyful. Each Sunday I owed her a hug. No matter how bad my sermon was - she was always encouraging and grateful. I was able to sit and spend some time and ask her questions and listen to her story. She wants to get this all out so that when it is her time to go home all will be ready. I spent an hour and am going to go back. It is not very often that you sit with a saint.

I share this with you more because I am trying to process this contrast... those who face death in the midst of tragedy and one who faces death at the end of a long life. Margaret is not eager but is so confident and hopeful. Yet in her 95 years of life she giggled as she shared that she almost drowned twice, was struck by lightening and was shot. Incredible. She also lost her husband - the love of her life after 26 years of marriage. She has known he own tragedy. Okay, sorry I am writing this and trying to figure out my point...maybe someone can help me here. My head is wandering.

Here is the main thing that my head wanders back to... in the midst of needing to find a job I also feel this calling. This desire is to see others experience the same community that we have experienced as they encounter tragedy. In the midst of tragedy boundaries are reduced, differences fade and love is expressed. In the midst of tragedy we care less about the color of our neighbors skin, their political position, and their religious beliefs. A child is on death's door we will rescue. A parent loses a child - our gut is wrenched. We hear the word cancer, sadness takes over. In these moments there are people ready to help but they do not know what to do. They just need a little guidance. In these moments we do not know what we need - what do we tell people to do to help? But there is a ministry in coming alongside it touches the person in need and the person who is giving. They just need a little guidance.

Later this month there will be a benefit concert for Jessica Huse. Pam who is organizing it contact us and I was able to connect her to Connor who put together Jacob's friends to do his benefits. It is an answer to prayer for us to simply come alongside and guide and direct as we pour out our love to Jessica and her family - her community.

I will keep you posted on Jessica's concert and how you can get tickets. Jessica remains on my heart. She came into Valley Med while Jake was there. Her need is still so critical. Keep her mom and dad and brother in your prayers.

Grace and peace,

Tom (daddy)

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