Friday, May 30, 2014

Cancer Free!

How do you write about the events of the past few days? Caution: This will be a long blog.

We were prayerfully ready for surgery--really prayerful!

The morning of May 28th began with last minute check of responsibilities, plans for the kids, paperwork and items to make an extended hospital stay comfortable.  The long ride was memorable and emotional.  We listened to Lisa's playlist (emotional in and of itself-check it out on Spotify-my wife's faith inspires me!), spoke "those" private, eternal words and while viewing the hospital that would be our home for a few days, shared prayer at a stop light.  With tears dry and hearts protected by the knowledge of prayer warriors surrounding us, we started through the pre-op routine.

Clothes switched to "the" gown.
Vitals checked.
IV Inserted.
Doctors and nurses asking questions and asking for any questions.
Friends Surrounding (awesome scene. The room was filled with a crowd of people ready to pray Lisa into surgery. A crowd the front desk referred to as the "party room.").
The time was 11:45 a.m.
They would take Lisa back in 15 minutes for a surgery that was predicted to take no less than 2.5 hours.
Then a phone call.

Let me pause the action to take us back through the events that brought Lisa to this pre-op room (very concise bullet points used).
  • Lisa has an appendectomy.
  • Pathology revealed the ruptured appendix was due to appendiceal cancer.
  • The doctor appointments began.
  • Incredible doors where opened to some of the finest doctors in the DFW area.  
  • The course of treatment was decided.
  • Surgery with Internal Chemo-the standard for Lisa's cancer.
  • Great doctor, great hospital, great staff, date of surgery set.
  • Caring Bridge activated and support plan in place.
  • Last post written on May 27th.   Here it is:
Hello Friends,
Tomorrow is the big day! Lisa’s surgery is scheduled to begin at 12 noon. As always, we know and are confident that the Lord goes before us in this surgery and that this journey through cancer did not catch him off guard. We ask that you remember the following things in prayer:

  • That the surgery be filled with great “surprises” of healing that only the Lord could receive credit. 
  • That the recovery will be quick and with as little discomfort as possible.
  • That Braeden and Shelbee be strengthened and comforted as their mom is in the hospital.
  • That I will serve my wife and children with great energy, passion and be a source of comfort for each of them.
  • That our journey will not be wasted as we press in close to the Father and develop greater character.
  • That the Lord be glorified in our family’s response to this journey
Again, thank you all for your love, patience and practical outpouring of love and support. We are indeed a blessed family.

We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit! -Romans 5:3 (The MSG)


So, back to the pre-op room, May 28th, 11:45 a.m. and the phone call.

At 11:55 a.m. (minutes before Lisa is set to receive the anesthesia "cock-tail") the doctor comes into the room, dismisses the crowd (party) and asks to speak to Lisa and I privately.  He begins with "I just got a call from Pathology"(who had been feverishly trying to get a hold of him all morning-he was in surgery).   Now, considering Lisa's track record with health issues, we both expected the worst.  Then, with a smile (he said he was not use to giving good news) he informed us that there would be no surgery!  His pathologist (verifying the findings of another pathologists on his team) said that cancer did not destroy the appendix it was endometriosis and to stop the surgery! 

Lisa and I were both stunned and asked, "So, what do we do now?"  After the usual "technical stuff" he suggested she get dressed, go have lunch and celebrate!   So we did!

Wow!

We are still trying to process the events of the last few days!  An event that will lead to a few what we have learned posts I am certain.  In short, we are thankful, amazed and give the Lord praise for answered prayer!

So, here it comes...
Was the original diagnosis wrong?
Did the Lord change the pathology?
Did the Lord lead you to the correct doctors to see the correct diagnosis?
Did...?
I have no clue!

Let me use the words of the man, formerly known as the blind man, in John 9.  When people where questioning him about how he received back his sight, the man said, "One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”  

Here is what Lisa and I can say, "One thing we know, she was told she had cancer and was having surgery and the diagnosis changed." In dramatic, 11th hour, glory giving/attracting,  "surprise filled" (Check the above prayer requests again--amazing!) fashion.   
The Father not only answered the prayer. 
He answered the prayer and dropped the mic!

PRAISE GOD! 

Let me be crystal clear (emphasis added by Lisa's request and my solid agreement)
God is good all the time!  His goodness would have remained if deliverance from surgery had not come or had resulted in death.  I am not wanting to sound dramatic but affirming the words of a friend who said, "God always gives his people a yes!"  This time, the Father 's "Yes" lined up with our "yes."

As we drove home (after getting Lisa lunch) here is the song from her playlist that caught our attention and created a thin-silence, tear filled, speechless moment.  Enjoy! (If the video does not appear, here is the link Whom Shall I Fear)



By the way, if you don't know the God of Angel Armies,  we would love to tell you about Him! He was and continues to be by our side!






19 comments:

  1. Wonderful, amazing, grace-filled story. Thankful for Lisa and for you. May God continue to bless you.

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  2. Our Father is faithful to those that He calls his children. Praise God!

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  3. So so awesome. And you are right, God doesn't always choose healing. He knows what is best in every situation, even if it isn't what we would like. But I am so thankful he chose this for Lisa! He still does miracles each and every day.

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  4. WOW is all I can say!! Praise GOD for this wonderful news!!!!

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  5. So happy for Lisa! Thankful God chose this way to answer prayers!

    And also, what did Lisa choose for lunch? Just curious :)

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  6. Praise GOD!! An Amazing story! Our Awesome GOD!! Beautiful Song!

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  7. We praise God with you! Such an answer to so, so many prayers.

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  8. So thankful! Thankful too for the witness to His goodness. No matter what- it's Him we love and follow and choose and praise. Blessings!

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  9. My family is SO thankful for your and Lisa ' s example during this time.

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  10. This is Tami here (under Rob's account).... A-MA-ZING!!!! I am tearing up and rejoicing with you, and I just knew that the "God is good all the time" was coming somewhere in the story, because Lisa has spoken those words many times back in our Lindsey and Madison days! Rob and I love you guys a lot :)

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  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  12. Our little girl (she is now 4.5) just celebrated 3 years of surviving since her Traumatic Brain Injury, Stroke and Epilepsy. The Epilepsy had her in the hospital for a week in April and a week in November. I hate the separation that our family faces when Kenley has to go to the hospital. Her stays have been at hospitals 2.5 hours away and 6 hours away and has caused my husband, our other two daughters and I to not be under the same room for more than 80 days (and she had an 18 months break with no hospitalizations).
    A lot of our daughters recovery can't really be explained. While her Doctors were fantastic and gave us hope, she has far exceeded even our hopes and desires for her recovery. She has ongoing issues and will likely be having more brain and skull surgeries in the future. She sustained a significant and serious injury, one that easily could have killed her. One that has killed many others.
    Everything that we have been though has been challenging and tough, but rewarding and a blessing. I don't think we would change a thing. God's grace and blessings in our lives these past three years has been tremendous and amazing. He has uplifted us and provided for us in ways that I could never imagine. Her accident didn't just change us for the better as a family, it has also changed our Ministry.
    I will have to check out Lisa's Spotify. I have my "Kenley" songs (which are many and powerful), but I am always looking to add new ones in.

    God bless y'all in your Ministry and I am very thankful to hear the update on Lisa. She was very kind to my Kenley one year at NCYM and while I don't really know y'all, the moment has stuck with me.

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    Replies
    1. Wow! Incredible story. Thank you for sharing Sarah!

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  13. Praise God! I am happy that God has delivered Lisa from this incredible trial. Your testimony speaks volumes and inspires me as well as so many others. Thank you for sharing God's amazing love throughout all.

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  14. Wow!! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!!

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