Friday, August 05, 2005

Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
Hebrews 12:1

This verse jumped into my head last night. I had met up with some women (mostly moms) from my school to support and encourage another mom whose husband was in the hospital. I am always encouraged and amazed to see the body of Christ at work in the lives of others. It is humbling for me to see how little I reach out to those who are broken, beaten down, in pain, and suffering when in fact that is exactly what I am called to do.

I want to share with you the story of this family. Travis (dad), Paula (mom), and Ian (son) are returning to our school this year. Two weeks ago Travis began to feel numbness in his fingers and toes. This progressed to his feet going numb and then it continuing up his legs. They feared that he had ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and began to plan as if Travis only had the next two years to live. After being admitted to the hospital they were relieved to find out it was not ALS but a disease (of which I cannot remember the name, of course) that causes progressive paralysis, intense pain, and then plateaus and the paralysis begins to diminish. The disease causes antibodies to attack the body which then causes paralysis but the person can still feel everything (there is no loss of sensation just loss of control of the muscles). The joyful news is that there is a 100% recovery rate of this disease.

Paula has watched her husband be taken over by paralysis to a point where he couldn’t breathe on his own, couldn’t talk, and couldn’t even close his eyelids. She described how she would close his eyelids for him (how sweet and tender is the touch of a wife to her husband). Paula has had to sleep lying across Travis’s chest so that he would not pull out the breathing tube since he has gained some movement back in his arms.

As I sat listening to this woman of faith I was humbled by her faith, by her hope, by her strength, and by her heart. She’s going through this awful situation and she is smiling and hopeful and assured that God is good and her husband is safe in His hands.

If you have a chance please pray for this family. Pray that Travis will continue to recover at a miraculous rate (the doctors are amazed at his progress), that rehabilitation will go smoothly, and that he will rest in the hands of the God of healing. Pray for Paula, that she will be comforted as she takes on the responsibilities of her family, that the peace that surpasses all knowledge will encompass her, that she will be given blessings of joy as Travis recovers (for example he was able to kiss her for the first time in two weeks). Pray for Ian, that this little boy will see the strength of faith of both his parents, that he will fear nothing in this time, that all the transitions to come will not be difficult for him. Also please just pray that our community at school will rise up and support this family and that God will be exalted by the serving and caring hearts of all who come to the need of this family. Pray that they will be surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses and that they themselves will witness to the power and love of our God.

Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Hebrews 12:2

This isn’t in the grain of my usual postings, but this situation just touched my heart and I wanted to share it with you out there.


Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

What love. That sweet wife, closing his eyelids. Sleeping on his chest. I must admit, my eyes began to fill up at that. The family will be in my prayers.

I always enjoy your postings KT. Always.

8/05/2005 10:15 AM  
Blogger steve said...

grain schmain

Got my prayers

8/05/2005 10:29 AM  
Blogger JLR said...

thank you for sharing. they are on my prayer list.

8/05/2005 11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guillain-Barre syndrome?

8/05/2005 11:17 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

Yes, thank you. I tried to google search it for a while and came up with nadda.

Thanks Anon, whoever you are.

8/05/2005 11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The paralysis is caused by demyelination (loss of the myelin sheath on the nerve cells). Not the most common auto-immune occurence, but sounds like (thankfully) he's making a great recovery. They probably gave him some IV Immune Globulin. Glad he's doing better. Will keep him and his family (and you!) in my prayers.

8/05/2005 11:30 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

Thanks again Anon, sure you don't want to revel yourself since you are a wealth of knowledge?

8/05/2005 11:33 AM  
Blogger Edge said...

I like that.


8/05/2005 12:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would, but my contract says I would then have to charge by the minute...

8/05/2005 1:15 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

I never get Anonymous posters... ;)

Katie... this post is just one of the many reasons why Sydney and I Love you.

8/05/2005 1:50 PM  
Blogger whaaaat! said...

In my prayers too.
So neat that believers can come together in this way.

8/05/2005 1:53 PM  
Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

K-T, not to change the subject, but did you ever get to upload your tooth fairy picture?

8/05/2005 2:05 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Steve made the list.... I don't mean to start anything here but...



8/05/2005 2:32 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

AM - still have the camera, still have the cord, still DONT have the program.

Ben - You're so cut off from information.

8/05/2005 2:44 PM  
Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

KT, does he know something we don't know? PRAY TELL!

8/05/2005 2:51 PM  
Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

OHHHH, I get it. The link list. Juba's on the link list. First Jes' list, then yours. am I soon to follow? :p

8/05/2005 2:52 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

The thing about Ben is that he thinks he knows but he doesn't know, but it is good to keep him guessing . . . . .

8/05/2005 2:57 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

I just like to stir the pot... even if I don't know anything... lol.

I am just observant... I don't have any "inside information"

8/05/2005 3:09 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

And that Ben is one of many reasons I think you are good people

8/05/2005 3:10 PM  
Blogger jes said...

oh, wow. i've never heard of such a thing! thank you for sharing!

8/05/2005 4:12 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

I am always amazed by the graciousness and beauty of people's love.

Thanks for reminding me that love and faith really can carry you through anything.

8/05/2005 5:43 PM  
Blogger MsThang said...

Wow what a great couple! I will definitely be praying for him, his family, and your school community!

8/06/2005 10:32 AM  
Blogger Jayleigh said...

Thanks for this post, Katie. This has given me the kick in the backside to do something I've been putting off for a while now.

God bless Travis, Paula and Ian as they wait for this recovery.

8/06/2005 10:11 PM  
Blogger Edgy Mama said...

Thanks, Katie. Beautiful story.

8/07/2005 10:40 AM  

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