jesus-anima.gif It’s Good Friday, 2008. Lea and I are together, and we pray thankfully every single day that we have been given the privilege to be together. Lea continues to make good progress in recovering from her time in “the hospital” . . . in Meriden and Hartford, Connecticut, Noblesville, Indiana and Kealakekua, Hawaii. During the past two and a half years there have been some very difficult times involved in her recovery from emotional, mental and physical challenges, but our Lord, God, has been with us every step of the way. We have never felt closer to Him, and pray each day that He will direct us in walking the path He has chosen for us.

Since the end of last year I’ve been following a little baby’s trials in trying to recover from a congenital diaphragmatic hernia, a defect or hole in the diaphragm that allows the intestine to squash the lungs and prevent them from developing properly. Only five pounds five ounces at birth, the hole in Anna’s diaphragm was quickly discovered, and she was transferred to Indianapolis’ Riley Children’s Hospital for treatment. She is still there today, and is preparing to undergo another surgery today. She has a journal blog at http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/annayutzy if you would like to keep up with her progress.

I have experienced many floods of emotion as I follow the ups and downs she and her extended family are experiencing. I have been through most of those same trials during Lea’s treatment and certainly recall the horror and helplessness I felt. It makes me feel certain that the Lord is working through Anna to reach out to all who will listen to help them hear the news of His good and great plan for each of us who have accepted Jesus as our Saviour and the doorway to complete forgiveness of our sins. Praise God!

As I read the journal entry posted by her parents this morning, saying that Anna was awaiting this next surgery, and they are hoping it will be a great step to achieving a normal life, I was just flooded by gratitude that our own grandson, now almost five months old, has been such a blessing to us! We have marveled as we have watched his mental capacity and eye-muscle coordination improve as he grows, and just absolutely melt when he gives us a smile.

We have praised God so many times for the blessing of this new grandchild, and I try to see in the pictures of Anna that are posted periodically that she, too, is growing in these ways. Each little baby brought into the world is such a wonderful blessing; a heavenly gift that can bring such joy! And, I am humbled that Anna’s grandparents are having to go through a different kind of experience, certainly a more difficult one, and my heart goes out to them. I can empathize with the pain they feel, and know all too well the helplessness one feels.

The Caring Bridge blog the hospital provides for Anna is a wonderful means to help loved ones keep up on Anna’s progress, but I also know that it serves as an excellent source of strength and support for her parents and family. In my own case, some of the best support I received came through emails that encouraged me, gave personal testimony, and lifted Lea up in prayer. It seemed to me that I always got just exactly the message I needed for that day, just in time. It was uncanny . . . each of the four times Lea clinically died and was revived, there was a message from God in my email!

I hope that I have learned to be more openly appreciative of His works, more expressive of His plan of salvation, and a better witness for the peace one can obtain by turning your life over to God. Hopelessness, I think, may be most evident when you have a loved one in critical care for an extended period of time. There is nothing you can do; you have to trust their caregivers to keep them safe. That’s when you feel totally helpless. They even control when and where you can visit your loved one!

his is when it’s time to get on your knees, or prostrate yourself in front of God, and say, “Okay, Father, I know You are in control here. I can’t do anything! I am powerless to determine how this is going to turn out. I can only say that I know you love her/him, and that you can work through her/him to reach others who need to receive The Word. I just pray, Father, that if it is Your Will that she/he be taken home to receive her/his reward, that You will give me the wisdom to understand that my personal loss might be a blessing to You and Your works here on Earth, and please give me the strength to be a good and obedient servant. Thy Will be done! Amen.”

We pray that the Lord’s will for Anna is that she be given miraculous healing to help her overcome this problem, and that she be granted a full and healthy life in His service. I pray that He continue the shower of blessings on our extended family, as we share His word; that He will always have His hand in the life of our grandson, just as He has for our delightful teen-age granddaughters, who have already given of themselves to minister for Him on mission trips.

What a joy it has been to see seeds planted long ago bear such bountiful fruit! Can you imagine how He feels as He watches us? Glory to God for all things, and may you receive a special blessing today, and each day of this Easter weekend, as you ponder the magnificent gift of life given us by the blood shed on the cross so long ago. And yet, He lives! I hope you saw Him here in this simple, humble posting. God bless!

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