Monday, March 31, 2008

Blessing of "Didn't"

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my father!
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not:
As thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth.
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Great is Thy faithfulness, Great is Thy faithfulness,
Morning by morning new mercies I see:
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!

We have Strength for today, Hope for tomorrow and blessings that we can see, with thousands more that we don't see. Think about the blessing of what "didn't" happen to you.

  • You didn't get the flu when everyone else at work did.

  • Your car didn't break down when you didn't do the maintenance on it.

  • You remembered to turn off the iron at the very last minute before you went away for the weekend.

The blessings of "what didn't" are as big as the ones that we count as blessings.
  • Grant didn't have his event in his bed.

  • Teresa didn't go with me to Italy.

  • Teresa didn't get ready on time, so she was in the kitchen.

We really need to count and recount our blessings and think hard at what they are and what we could have received, but didn't.

Col. 1:11 May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Patience with joy is a new thing to me. There have been times when I have been patient, though this would not be the first character trait people would use to describe me, and there have been times when I have been joyful, the same is true for this character trait. But what about being patient with joy. For me these 2 don't go together. When I'm in a trial I can be patient, and I can think about God's will for me to be patient and sometimes God has granted it, but to have true joy in a trial and be patient at the same time is only from God. God can change us to be like His Son who had joy going to the cross for our sins. "Who for the joy set before Him, endured the cross.."

Remembering the "didn't" helps me to rejoice in God while I'm in something. Again, this is new for me, old for some of you, and some haven't really thought about it. I pray that God would continue His work in refining me. There's a lot of junk to get out.

Pray for Wally his wife Cheri. His numbers were up to about 3000 at the start of his chemo treatment and have gone down as far as about 800, which the doctors were thrilled with, but I talked to John this morning and they are back up to about 2800. There is no cure for his cancer, and he really does feel great, but this is probably not a good sign. Wally is a kind and sweet friend who is going through a time of refining of his own. He has been demonstrating to me patience with joy. Thanks Wally.

We can rejoice with Hope knowing that God is our Good Shepherd,

Click here to read the next part, "Wanna Trade?"

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Your Relationship with Your Dad

Is. 40:28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.

This morning Grant was back in church. It was great to see everyone look in amazement at what God has done. Grant looks just like he did 8 days ago, just with a small bump on his left chest. He doesn't seem to be tired at all. If that doesn't bolster your faith I don't have any idea what would.

I was talking to Mark J. (not the one in the hospital) and he said he had been thinking that if no one had prayed for Grant and God had just healed him anyway, he still would have been healed just as much as he is right now, but God would not have been magnified nearly as much, because not as many people would have known. God deserves all our praise and I'm glad He was pleased to show His power through this event in our family's life and in Grant's heart.

I talked just a bit this morning in one28 and it was something that has been on my heart since early on in this time. I think most people think that they aren't going to have something like this happen to them, or even in their family. That even if something does happen like this they would have time to make their relationship with God right. Grant doesn't remember anything that happened between Friday night and Tuesday morning. When Grant went to bed on Friday night he certainly wasn't thinking about dying the next morning in the shower. God didn't give him any time between going to sleep and no heart beat to think about his relationship with his maker.

It didn't ever occur to me that Friday night might be the last time I would see Grant.

This gives us 2 things to think about.

1. Is your relationship right with God? Is there anything you need to finalize before you get your last heart beat?

2. Is there someone you need to talk to about the Lord? Is there someone you have been afraid to talk to about Christ that you may never see again?

I'm really encouraged by your comments concerning the blog. I am just thinking on the computer I guess.

We did talk to Grant's neuromuscular Dr. today. He just came back from N.C.

He already has some tests in the works and will have more info for us in approximately 2 weeks. I don't want to give more info than that, as we aren't completely sure of what is going on yet. He said the event helps to confirm the direction he was thinking, so if this is a positive diagnosis then we can start getting Grant some attention armed with that ammunition. Also, when we find out exactly what has been going on with Grant then we can give very specific tests to Kimmy and Garrett to see if they have the same link genetically.

Keep praying that the doctors would know what to look for and see what they need to see.

Keep praying for Teresa that she would rest in her Father's care. As we heard this morning, He does care for us so very much.

Garrett has his eco tomorrow. Pray they would see what they need concerning that test.
Pray for Mark J. that he would continue to recover. He has a long road ahead.

Thanks for your delight in seeing Grant this morning. He is our "little" miracle.

Ps. 37:3 Trust in the LORD and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.

4 Delight yourself in the LORD
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

5 Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him and he will do this:

Click here to read the next part, "Blessing of 'Didn't'"'

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cards, Cards and More Cards

With all the business of the past week we have just emptied the mail box of so many cards the mail man was probably having a hard time getting them all in.
We are overwhelmed with you love and support in this time.

We received letters from church members who have moved away, a bunch of younger kids at GBC, many students from GA, adults from SS classes, communication cards with notes on the back, and even a packet of cards from the MVCS soccer team. What an encouragement to Grant and to us all.

When we follow the Lord's prompting to minister to others, we are God's hands and feet at work. This is the way the body is supposed to work, and it is evident to the Weinbergs that it is working very well.

Thanks again from all of us.

Encouraged beyond words,

Click here to read the next part, "Your Relationship with Your Dad""

Hope in God

Ps. 146:5 Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD his God,

6 the Maker of heaven and earth,
the sea, and everything in them—
the LORD, who remains faithful forever.

7 He upholds the cause of the oppressed
and gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets prisoners free,

8 the LORD gives sight to the blind,
the LORD lifts up those who are bowed down,
the LORD loves the righteous.

9 The LORD watches over the alien
and sustains the fatherless and the widow,
but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.

10 The LORD reigns forever,
your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the LORD.

It was a week ago right now that we started this event.

I was looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again, but I didn't sleep that well. Maybe it's because I haven't really done any exercise this past week, maybe because you all brought so much food for us to eat, but I think it's because I was thinking about kids and parents a lot.

I'm reading a book by John MacArthur entitled "A Tale of Two Sons". The story is one of the most recognized stories in the Bible. It's about a father with 2 sons and one takes his fortune early and blows it. Most people know it as The Prodigal Son, but as J. Mac is laying out, it is really not as much about the sons as it is about The Father.

I have been thinking about this because while we were in the hospital so many people came into the waiting rooms hurting both physically and emotionally. God allowed us to move quickly away from emotional pain to rejoicing. In this time quite a few people have talked to me about their own kids and I know that many of you are hurting because they aren't walking with the Lord. I know you love them very much and I really can't imagine your pain in this. Why does God choose one child and not another? Why does He let people who truly love Him go on hurting in life from the weight of a wayward one? We are not going to understand much of what God does, but we can trust that He knows what he is doing.

I want to encourage you this morning with just a sentence from a song that Larnell Harris sings and those words are, "As long as the heart still breaks, there is hope".
We can have hope in God, because God works all things for His good.
We can have hope in God because He is the Father in the story and He REALLY loves His sons; both of them. He allows us to make decisions that He already knows are not the best for us, but He also knows this things will teach us.

We can hope in God, because He has actually saved some of us, though we are certainly not worthy. We can hope in God, because He has given His Son for us, just so we can have a relationship with Him.

Keep praying for your loved ones. If God can raise Grant to life, He can and does do miracles. Grant is sitting on the couch with Teresa and I right now:)

Ps. 36:5 Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the skies.

6 Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
O LORD, you preserve both man and beast.

7 How priceless is your unfailing love!
Both high and low among men
find refuge in the shadow of your wings.

8 They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.

9 For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.

Thanks again for all you have done to strengthen and encourage our family this past week.

Click here to read the next part, "Cards, Cards, and More Cards"

Friday, March 28, 2008

School, Home and Report

It's still snowing outside, but it's warm and pretty quiet in the house. I like quiet.

We made it in time for Grant to see all his buds at the school. It was really nice for them to get to see him and for him to feel so loved by the staff and students. Some of the kids said it was like there was a celebrity there. He's a celeb to me.

We then came home and I got to take a nice long shower to get all the hospital off me:) Oh it feels so good to be home. I'm looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend.

Our cardiologists are the best!!!

Dr. B. came in fro a "social visit" this morning and said she was very happy with Grant's progress. She wants him to be active and get out and do things, just not put his left arm up over his shoulder. The leads need time for his body to build some cells around the wires and after that happens, in about a month, they will not be able to move around at all. Right now they are just kind of hanging in his heart and if he moves too much they could get dislodged. Probably not the direction we want to go right now.

Dr. C. came in after Dr. B. left, because C comes after B:), and told us that her day off is Thursday, yesterday, and she spent the day in the library at UW trying to figure out what's really going on with Grant. She said that there are so few cases of non compaction that there really is not "expert" to turn to. She also said that all the info is only in books, not online, so to find out what she needs to, she has to read in the library. I thanked her for that sacrifice of her time and she blew it off as being her job. I told her that you only do that kind of thing when you love your job. She replied that even if she won the lottery she would continue to be a cardiologist. Wow, what a great person to have on your side.

Kimmy just turned in her EKG machine and instead of making us wait to find out what's going on there, and having mama be concerned with the outcome, she read all the reports and films and said that Kimmy is fine. How good is that? She wasn't concerned with her slow heart rate and said that she looks very healthy. Only one more to go.:)

Thanks to Providence for a great experience and great care for us in a time that could have been much more stressful. You get 5 stars in the service and care departments from the Weinbergs.

It seems as if this is coming to more of a close. It's been kind of a whirl wind week. God has carried us through it and we will try to continue to rest in His care. We humans forget so fast.

I did run up and see Mark J. this morning and he seems to be doing great, for having a 9 hr. surgery 2 days ago.

Pray that he would continue to gain strength and he would be able to get off the pain meds soon. He has a long road, but looks amazing for what he's been through.

Pray that Garrett's Eco would be conclusive, what ever that may be, God knows.

Pray that Teresa would be able to rest in knowing that God is in control even after Grant has come home. She doesn't really want to leave him alone. Remind us that if God can take care of all the issues He has, that He certainly can sustain us trough the day to day things.

We'll see most of you on Sunday.

Happy to be home,

Click here to read the next part, "Hope in God"

Your Steadfast Love Endures Forever

Ps. 138:1 I give you thanks, O LORD, with my whole heart;
before the gods I sing your praise;
2 I bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
for you have exalted above all things
your name and your word.

3 On the day I called, you answered me;
my strength of soul you increased.
4 All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O LORD,
for they have heard the words of your mouth,
5 and they shall sing of the ways of the LORD,
for great is the glory of the LORD.
6 For though the LORD is high, he regards the lowly,
but the haughty he knows from afar.

7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
and your right hand delivers me.
8 The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.

Just a short week ago I was thinking about the Easter concert, and if I was really ready to play. What a difference a few days makes.

As Grant is resting for his short trip home, a light snow falls outside our window. Watching the snow fall is now calming to me, unlike in the Les Schwab days when snow meant lots of hours and work.

Thought you would like to see the pictures of the area where Grant's ICD is implanted. Nice incision, huh?

Grant is so easy going. Even as they tell him he can probably go home this morning, and he would like to get by the school to see everyone before break, the paperwork takes time to get him discharged and he says "It's ok if I don't get there dad". What a sweet boy; like his mama. I told the nurse that he just doesn't like to put anyone out.

I can't believe it has almost been a week here. The time has gone by fast here too, I must be getting old.

My heart is full of thanks to God for all His mercies and goodness to our family and for His faithfulness to us in this unusual time. I have to find a different word for this time, because "trial" seems like the wrong word. Even though Pastor Z. has told us that trials are neutral, they have always seemed to have a negative connotation, but this really seems to me like one of the most positive times in our family's life. I feel like celebrating. Those of you who know me know that's not to abnormal.

There are many in the Body who have things going on and we need to keep praying for them.

I will update you when we find out what is going on with the other 2 kids so you will know better how to pray.

God has strengthened my soul through this time because it was so evident to me that He had His hand in every detail.

Feasting on His Goodness,

Click here to read the next part, "School, Home, and Report"

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Take Out

I just wanted you all to know that we are supposed to go home tomorrow morning some time. So if you were thinking of coming in, wait to do that.

It was so nice this evening to have dinner here again and what was special about tonight is that we were with people we don't really know that well from the church, but they still wanted to serve us this way. You have all been so kind to us in this time of growth. Thanks for caring for us in such a tangible way. I think I have gained a few pounds here:(

In our visit they were telling us that they had been in the hospital for a 5 week stay with their young son while dad was working a full time job. Thanks so much to the staff of PG for making it possible for me to be here with Grant w/o having to be concerned or not whether everything was being taken care of. God is gracious that I only needed to be with Grant and to try to care for him, rather than work and do that as well. He really does know exactly what we can handle.

Kimmy's Eco went well today, but we really don't know what the results are until the cardiologist reads it. Pray that the doctor would be able to see what she needs to in order to make a proper diagnosis.

Adam and Jon B. from the UW basketball team came by today. Jon brought Grant a pair of size 17 shoes that he autographed for him. What a nice gesture. Those are some big shoes.

Matt 6:25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

28 "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

I was thinking about this passage today. God does take care of us, in every detail of our lives. One of the nurses was talking to her husband about Grant and how he is such a miracle boy. She was telling him that she was just amazed at Grant and apparently her husband said asked her if she read her Bible. He said if she read her Bible she would read all the miracles, like Peter walking on water, and Lazarus being raised from the dead and why is she so amazed about Grant? She said it helps to see personal miracles, in real life, right in front of you. When it's personal it certainly becomes more important and probably more real.

Spring break starts tomorrow for the kids. It will be nice to have Grant home and just hang out all together. If we can get out of here soon enough Grant would really like to stop by the school on the way home.

I'll get more pictures on tomorrow when I get home.

Thanking God for a strong boy to take home,

Click here to read the next part, "Your Steadfast Love Endures Forever"

Map and More

Sorry I have not updated you this morning. My sister Rosie called and asked about Grant's heart rate, and I have apparently had a "Dori" moment as I forgot where I left you all.

They gave Grant a Beta blocker last night which slows the heart rate down. He will be on this for a while, if not all his life in this "tent". Within a couple of hours of taking this his HR was back down to normal.

They woke him up about 6:30a for an x-ray. The tech asked how he was doing, and he responded that "well, since I was dead just a couple of days ago, I guess I'm doing pretty good". That's Grant's normal sense of humor. That's going to be a hard story to top. "I went sky diving, I went 2.7 seconds on a bull named Fu Manchu, I was dead". I think that will probably "win".

The cardiologist came by and we talked. She is still very excited about his condition. The Medtronic tech also came by and showed Grant how the machine could be tested. He increased Grant's HR from the computer from 95 up to 110. When he did it he told Grant that he may be able to feel it and as soon as it happened Grant coughed because it felt different. Wow, technology is amazing. They will also give Grant a monitor, of sorts, that will sit next to his bed and they can watch his progress from a remote computer while he sleeps. We also got to hear the beeper that tells when the unit needs to be checked.

He has taken 2 full laps around this floor. People in the halls are saying, "Oh, you're the one". When we started walking I had to tell him to slow down.

I told Grant that he would probably have some people that would cry when they see him for the first time.

OK, about the map. I hear it takes a while to load, and I know that you all want to be added to it, and it really is a fun thing. Thanks Jess. But I'm not smart enough to add to it, so we'll have to wait for someone else to update it.")

We are so encouraged by your responses.

Thanks for loving us and for all your prayers. It is amazing that we are meeting new friends all over the world through Grant's event.

Pray for strength today so he can walk as much as possible and have any concerns removed before going home tomorrow. Pray that God would continue to use this event to change hearts and draw people to Himself.

Enjoying being with Grant,

Click here to read the next part, "Take Out"

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Prayer Map

This is a map that Jesse M. provided for us to see where God's people are praying for Grant. Amazing and encouraging.

Click here to read the next part, "Map and More"

Love Your Children Well

Being a parent today is a tough job. There are so many choices to make and so many good things to do. How do you choose?

Let me say that I don't think I'm a great parent, and I am not saying this for anyone to disagree and tell me otherwise. Really.

Parenting is a lot of work and a huge responsibility, but it also can be a great joy. God has blessed us with 3 great kids. They are not perfect, but they have soft hearts.

I want to tell you where I think I could have done better so this can help those of you that have not yet reached this part of the road yet.

We all have strengths and weaknesses. Whether it's talking too much or too little. Being thrifty or not. Being on the lazy side or the industrious side. All our character traits have a plus and a minus and when we raise our kids we need to remind them which of our traits they have and how we have learned, if we have, to manage those weaknesses. It is interesting to me, as I sit by Grant's bed, to see the traits he has that are mine that I wish he would not have picked up. Thankfully he is a lot like his mother. You know exactly what I'm talking about if you have kids of your own.

When I was reading some of the cards sent in to Grant, one of them said that I was a "mentor" to someone. Well I guess I don't really think about that too much. I do what I believe is right and just go on. Maybe I need to pay more attention to being an example to those that are under my care. We are always changing the lives of our kids for better or for worse. We are all role models whether we think we are or not, and whether or not we want to be.

I am so thankful for the people in my kids' lives who have come along side of Teresa and I to help us raise them to be the people they are today. We are crazy to think that we can raise kids w/o the help of others in their lives.

I need to love my boys, and Kimmy, and show them I love them the way they need to be shown love. For each one that will look a little different. I need to figure that out and then do it. While being with Grant I know that the reason I have had 3 surgeries previously is to prepare me for Grant's surgery this week. W/o those 3 before hand I wouldn't have sympathy and empathy for him. I normally don't have too much room for someone that is sick. Many of the kids/people who know me will tell you that I say "just buck up". Boys need to grow up to be men and that means they need to be shown how to work hard and work when they're not feeling good, but we need to know where the line is. I haven't done a great job in this department. I need to be a sweeter, tough man.

Boys need to be loved by their dads, and they need to know they are loved. I love my boys, but do they know it all the time?

My kids know the standard is high, but do they know that I love them when they don't meet the standard? I think I often focus on the standard instead of them.

Teresa has been telling me that they are going to be gone pretty soon and she is right. I need to make sure they know that I'm proud of them all the time.

This has been a good reminder for me this week and I thank God He has put me right next to Grant so I could minister to him in this time and in this way.

All you dad's out there, learn from my short comings.

We have 3 great kids only because God is gracious. Many of you are doing a much better job than I am, so praise God and excel still more.

Ps. 112:1 Praise the LORD! Blessed is the man who fears the LORD,
who greatly delights in his commandments!
2His offspring will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.

How sweet it is to see so many of our young men loving the Lord and pouring back into the lives of our sons. Pray that we would be men who aren't afraid to show love to our boys. Pray that our boys would love the Lord and love His Word.

Praising God for His gentle prompting,

Click here to read the next part, "Prayer Map"

Day Five and ICD in Place

Grant is doing great. The ICD is in place and he is resting. He was pretty tired today, but says he doesn't have any pain from the ICD.

He was a little green from the anti bacterial scrub, it was green in color. 2 HS small groups came here tonight and they were talking about him being the hulk.

There is a little concern from the nursing staff. When he stands up his heart rate goes up to around 145, so they are not too excited about that. We will talk to the cardiologist tomorrow morning and I'm sure she will have some thoughts.

I also talked to her about Grant's stay here. He, of course, wants to go home tonight, but that's not happening. There is a very good chance he will be here until Friday, but it's better to be safe in this situation.

The cardiologist is also highly recommending that the other 2 kids should have an eco cardiogram to rule out the possibility of the same non compaction as Grant has. As I said before, this is a very rare condition, and they don't have a lot of cases to reference, so they want to be cautious in what takes place. Right now if there is a similar condition in the other 2 kids they may suggest an ICD for them as well.

Kimmy is scheduled for and "eco" tomorrow and Garrett for Monday.

I did ask the cardiologist if, in her mind, compaction was a contributor to Grant's event and she is relatively sure that it does have something to do with it. We want to make sure that the others don't have an event. Even though I wouldn't change the path God has laid out for us this week, I want to do everything we can do to not take unnecessary risks.

I'll post again in just a little bit. I want to change the subject a bit.
Pray for Grant's heart rate.

Also, pray for Mark J. who is on the 8th floor tonight recovering from a 9 hr. back surgery. He's had pretty serious pain for about 6 years and today they have hopefully helped that situation. He'll be in here for 5-6 more days. He's in for a real marathon in rehab. Pray for endurance for Mark and the family.

Click here to read the next part, "Love Your Children Well"

He's Out

Grant is out of surgery now. He is doing great.

I'd send another picture, but he looks he same. When the bandage is off we'll post a picture of his new gear.

There are more pictures on the blog. I went home and downloaded them. No I am not a techy.

Thanks for your prayers,

Click here to read the next part, "Day Five and ICD in Place"

Ninja Mom

Here is Teresa using the tools she knows best to deflate the balloons that are flat in Grant's room. Thought that those of you that know her would appreciate her using the pruners to do something besides horticulture.

Click here to read the next part, "He's Out"

Surgery Day

Psalm 139

1 O LORD, you have searched me
and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.

3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.

4 Before a word is on my tongue
you know it completely, O LORD.

5 You hem me in—behind and before;
you have laid your hand upon me.

6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.

7 Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?

8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,

10 even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.

11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,"

12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.

13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb.

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.

15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place.
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,

16 your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me
were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!

18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand.
When I awake,
I am still with you.

For the first 17 years and 10 months of Grant's life he has been a pretty normal kid. Grant was the kid in t-ball that was in the field looking the other way or picking the weeds. We were talking about that the other day and he said he knew that they weren't going to hit it to him anyway.

This are his last couple hours without an ICD. The doctor just came in and talked to us about going through the airport, and that he couldn't be an arc welder, but pretty much everything else is ok. EMF's are the issue. Magnets just turn the ICD off so if he had another event it would not respond. If the ICD does turn off it will reset itself. It won't actually shock him if there is an issue.

They will replace the entire unit when the battery is spent. This allows them to give patients the newest and best units possible. The doctor said that this unit is much more advanced than the ones she was placing even a couple of years ago. Like all electronics, even a couple of weeks and there is a better, smaller and faster version.
Grant is back to his usual self. The doctor asked if he was nervous or concerned at all about the procedure, and he said "no, not really". He is very calm in most every circumstance.

Yesterday I was thinking more about God's timing and was recalling that when I purchased my plane ticket, about 3 months ago Teresa had said she would rather stay home and be ready to go on vacation. God knew all of the details of this event from eternity past and just prompted Teresa to want to stay home. As I said in previous posts, it really is amazing that God allowed all the things to work together for His good. I am so happy that God had me here for this time, not just for Grant, Teresa and the kids, but for me as well. God shapes us in all kinds of circumstances.

Today is the day Grant's 6 months are up so he can drive people other than family members. He was so excited to be able to take others back and forth to school and church. He found out this morning that he and Jeanie are in the same "No driving" club for 6 more months. Because of his event he can't drive, it's not because of the ICD.
Teresa just got here, so Grant is in for 50 questions:) This is a mom thing I guess.

"How are you feeling?" "Well, I'm on a gurney".:)

Thanks for praying for us.

Grant is his usual self this morning. He is laughing and talking just like before the event. God is so Good to us.

Feeling the love of Christ and of all of you,

Click here to read the next part, "Ninja Mom"

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Big Bang

While I was reading the pamphlet on the ICD unit I was just amazed at the complexity of this muscle we call a heart.

Our hearts run on electrical currents that open this valve to relax this muscle and then open this other valve and then the blood goes into the chamber to be oxygenated to be delivered to this other chamber to be delivered to the rest of the body.

If the electrical system gets off track then the valves open and close at the wrong time and then the heart doesn't work properly.

How crazy is it that people think that this could all start from a big bang.

Grant and I were just talking to a couple of his nurses. The first one asked if I was a pastor, she must have seen my blog title. She told us that today one of the pharmacists just past away today. Seemingly perfectly healthy and tonight his family is mourning. That could have been us, but God chose to spare us the sorrow of losing our Grant.

There is no way to understand God's plan, and that's not our job. Our job is to trust what ever His plan may be.

I have to be ready for God to change His mind about Grant if He so chooses. So Grant will get some heart insurance tomorrow but even with that in place God doesn't guarantee him another day, or any of the rest of us. Are we thankful for the days we have?

Ps. 90:14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

God has been so good to us, and we have been so encouraged by all the notes and the visits. You are having a great impact on those at the front desk all the way to the 4th floor. They notice that you are all different than many who come to the hospital. The world can see that we have hope and joy in something other than just life itself. We have hope in God.

It's been sweet to hear all of your comments about the blog and how God is using His Word to pierce through hearts. God's Word is powerful.

Keep praying for His Word to work in hearts.

Pray that Grant's surgeons would know exactly what to do tomorrow and that they would be careful with my Grant's heart and lungs.

Pray that we could be a light to those around us, there are many hurting here.

Pray that the girls would get some sleep and be rested for tomorrow.

Thanks again for all those who are praying and for your sweet words to us.

Resting in His arms,

Click here to read the next part, "Surgery Day"

Heart Stuff

OK, I'm going to try to tell you what is going on medically with Grant and what is going to happen to him. If you aren't interested in the science part of the heart then just skip over this one. I'll try to say it as quick as possible.

When I posted about reading Grant's chart and looking at the list of things that were wrong with him, one of the things was he was V-Fib. "Ventricular Fibrillation (VF or V-Fib) is an irregular heart beat. During V-Fib electrical signals are very fast and irregular. The heartbeat can be so fast and chaotic that the heart muscles quivers rather than pumps. If the abnormal heart rhythm is not treated right away, VF is almost always fatal." This is from the pamphlet on the ICD. Teresa and the paramedics saved Grant's life.

(ICD) is an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator. An ICD can sense when your heart rhythm becomes dangerously fast, slows down or stops. Depending on the arrhythmia, the ICD will send electrical impulses to override the fast rhythm and bring it back to normal, or it will interrupt the fast rhythm by briefly shocking the heart. After the shock the heart rhythm usually returns to normal. The ICD can either slow the heart down, speed it up or restart it.

The procedure will happen on the first floor here at Providence tomorrow morning, if no emergency surgeries come up. They will put the unit under Grant's skin. It will be about the size of the new Nano with a couple of wires that extend off of it. They will place it on his left upper chest, under the skin but over the muscle. They will take the leads and insert them into the vein by the left clavicle and run it from there into the right side of the heart. The ICD will be visible with Grant's shirt off, and as thin as he is it may be with it on.

The ICD has a computer device in it that checks all the rhythms of the heart. It has a battery that apparently will last between 5-7 yrs, and it has a beeper in it that will tell Grant when it needs to be checked. He will have some sort of way to check it through his computer and then send that info to the cardiologist so she can assess what is wrong. The entire "generator" will apparently be replaced when the battery wears out.

Grant will need to meet with the cardiologist the first week and then a first month and then every 3 months from there on out.

When the cardiologist was telling us all the thing the ICD is capable of doing I said that it seems as if this would be an expensive piece of hardware. She said "it's like a car, a really nice car".

Grant is still doing very well. People are coming to visit and keep saying he looks great. He stands up and greets people when they come in. What a change a couple of days make.

Thanks for your replies to the blog. I'll send out more later.

Click here to read the next part, "Big Bang"

New Room

Well some new news.

Apparently after lunch they are moving him to room #307, so 1 floor down.

Grant just walked around the inside of the CCU floor twice and his heart rate is good and he said he feels really good, maybe less dizzy than he normally would have.

He also knows that it is Tuesday w/o being told.

I will post in a while about the procedure for tomorrow so you can all know what is happening. If I get it wrong you need to forgive me as I am only trying to recount what they are telling me.

More Later,

Click here to read the next part, "Heart Stuff"

Bathroom Repair

God is even in the timing of bathroom remodels.

For the past 3 days this waiting room has been filled to overflowing and there is just 1 bathroom in this immediate area. People have stayed with us for many hours. This morning I walked out of the CCU to find that they are doing some sort of repair to this bathroom. I'm so glad that they waited until today rather than having to do it yesterday with all the people here.

We take a lot for granted.

Click here to read the next part, "New Room"

ICD Surgery Scheduled

The doctor was just in and a looked at Grant. She said he certainly doesn't look like he needs to be here. It's true he looks really good and is smiling and laughing.

The surgery is scheduled for around 10a tomorrow and they are going to do a little physical therapy today for him. The procedure takes around 2 hours and I will get a picture of what it looks like so you can all see.

Megan B and Stephanie Z. were just here. The Z's will be excited to hear this story.

Steph didn't really want to come into the room but I told her that he was really awake and he would want to tease her, so she caved into the pressure.

She wasn't really talking to Grant and so I told her she needed to say something. Her pressing question was something about the device for Grant to be able to go to the bathroom. She really wanted to take home the plastic urinal for Pastor Z. to "use in a couple of years". She's a character.

The doctor then came in to talk to Grant and I about the procedure and Megan and I didn't realize that Steph was getting pretty pale. She had to go out and lay down because she was getting sick.

Thought you would enjoy that.

Click here to read the next part, "Bathroom Repair"

Three Days Ago

3 days ago, right now, this began.

I have been thinking quite a bit about the fact the I plan lots of things. I like a good plan, not just a plan, it has to be well thought out.

Going to France and Italy with Teresa on her 40th birthday and having it all planned and surprising her, that was a good one.

When we put the kids all on the plane with the Kolher family and went to Disneyland and the kids didn't even know where we were going, that was also a good one.

Well, as you know from reading this, my plan was to be in Italy purchasing some slabs and visiting some of my friends in the stone business there and meeting some new friends. I was to return home on Thursday night so we could leave again on spring break on Friday afternoon. I like a full schedule as well:)

I was thinking, as many of you have talked about this "trial", that for what I know now, I wouldn't trade this time for any vacation, even if it was well planned. God has changed our lives in this time. I could not be in a better place right now than where God has me. I'm sorry that Grant has to be the "vehicle" of my learning, but God strengthens our faith when we can't see what's coming. You don't get stronger faith by getting better eye sight. Stronger faith comes from depending more and closing your eyes, because you know that it doesn't matter if you can see what is ahead or not, because you're not in control anyway. I am seriously preaching to myself here.

Please know that whatever strength you seem to see in me is not me at all. God is my Rock and a Strong Tower we can run to. I am thankful for all of your encouragement to our family. He is giving the Amazing grace to get through this with the right perspective. It is not me, not even a little.

I'm sure we will see some of you today, and for those in other countries, please continue to reply, as this strengthens those who are reading as much as the blog.

God is Good to use us to minister to others.

Looking only to Christ,

Click here to read the next part, "ICD Surgery Scheduled"

Fathers and Sons

A psalm of David. When he fled from his son Absalom.

1 O LORD, how many are my foes!
How many rise up against me!

2 Many are saying of me,
"God will not deliver him."

3 But you are a shield around me, O LORD;
you bestow glory on me and lift up my head.

4 To the LORD I cry aloud,
and he answers me from his holy hill.

5 I lie down and sleep;
I wake again, because the LORD sustains me.

6 I will not fear the tens of thousands
drawn up against me on every side.

7 Arise, O LORD!
Deliver me, O my God!
Strike all my enemies on the jaw;
break the teeth of the wicked.

8 From the LORD comes deliverance.
May your blessing be on your people.

Good morning,

I just woke up a little bit ago. Sleeping in the hospital is certainly not like sleeping in your own bed, and this is also true for Grant. He is tired but can't sleep very well. It did seem like he slept better last night than the previous night.

I was just reading a few Psalms this morning and looked at the heading of this one and it really touched my heart.

I can't imagine David's heartache from having to run from his own son, knowing that much of the pain in his family was due to God's punishment for his own personal sin. It would be hard enough to have your sons be rebellious and not loving the Lord, but to know that your son is trying to kill you and all this from your own sin, I can't imagine. No wonder David wrote so much scripture for us to cling to, he himself was clinging to The Father.

I am so thankful for great kids who love the Lord.

I love you Kimmy, you are an amazing woman. God is using your love for Him in a powerful way.

I love you Garrett and am so proud of the young man you are. You are so disciplined in your quiet time. I pray that God uses you to change the world.

And Grant, you are the kindest, sweetest young man I know. Always the defender of the weak, always the strong, quiet leader. I love that you are reading Job and James together. Who, but God, would have known that reading Job would become this personal for you. Our God is a personal God.

Notice in the body of the Psalm that David recognizes that it is God alone that sustains and give rest and life. I'm thankful for both of those this morning.

Sometime last night, I'm not sure what time or in what state of sleepiness, I was just singing this song in my head. I love music like this because it can just bring me right back so I can focus on God again.

We sing these kind of songs and I often reflect on the words, but this week words about a Father's love for his Son cut quickly to my heart, and I need to be reminded of His love for me and also His sacrifice for me.

I am not so kind as to want give my son for any of you, even though many of you are really good friends to me. God gave His ONLY son, His perfect son, to pay the penalty for my sin. He paid the penalty and He knew exactly how we would treat Him while He was here on earth. If I gave my son up for someone I would be really mad if they didn't appreciate such a precious gift, yet so many reject this sweet sacrifice of love on our behalf. Read the words slowly, even if you know them very well.

Remember that this week would have been the first week the disciples would have Jesus back from the dead and would start enjoying the reality of who He is fully. They had 40 days with the Risen Savior. What a joyous time that must have been, when for the first time they could start putting all the pieces together. This had to be some of the sweetest time of communion ever on earth. Dinner with the Savior after He had paid the price with His own life. WOW

How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom

As for Grant this morning. He is sleeping very well right now. His heart rate is between 55-75 most of the time, which is great. He remembered again this morning that he had an MRI yesterday, so I think he will have good memory progress today.

There are no procedures scheduled for today and if they open up a room on another floor we can give this one to someone who needs it more than Grant currently does.

The staff here has been amazing. Thank God for people who want to study and work hard at medicine, because without them this technology would not be available.

Praise God for another day with The Son and with my sons,

Click here to read the next part, "Three Days Ago"

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Power of the Cross

Sorry, I'm a little more tired tonight than I thought I was.

While I was driving home I was listening to Chris Tomlin's song and of course it speaks a little louder today than it did a couple of days ago.

What can take a dying man
And raise him up to life again?
What can heal the wounded soul?
What can make us white as snow?
What can fill the emptiness?
What can mend our brokenness? Brokenness?

Mighty, awesome, wonderful
Is the Holy cross.
Where the Lamb lay down His life
To lift us from the fall.
Mighty is the power of the cross.

What restores our faith in God?
What reveals the Father's love?
What can lead the wayward home?
What can melt a heart of stone?
What can free the guilty ones?
What can save and overcome? Overcome?

It's a miracle to me
It's a miracle to me
It's still a mystery
And it's still a mystery
It's a miracle to me
The power of God
Those who believe

Mighty, awesome, wonderful
Is the Holy cross.
Where the Lamb lay down His life
To lift us from the fall.

Oh and mighty, awesome, wonderful
Is the Holy cross.
Where the Lamb lay down His life
To lift us from the fall.
Mighty is the power of the cross.

The doctors don't really know why Grant's heart stopped beating. They don't have an answer, but we do. God is the controller of heart beats.

The cars were driving around me coming from home and I was thinking to myself, "Please don't pull out and hit me, I don't need this tonight", but then I was reminded that I am not the "decider" of what I need. I need to trust God even in this that He really knows what I need. I don't trust Him enough in the smaller things in life.

I was also thinking that Garrett was going to come home and stay tonight, but he is staying with Steve, Gaye and Zach. Before I knew that was happening I was thinking that I don't want Garrett to be home by himself. How dumb is that? How quickly I forget that God knows what I can handle and He is good to us. I do believe, but I need help with my unbelief.

Thanks to Ron and Jen VDB for lunch. That is one Indian dish I really enjoy and that strawberry licorice is so good!

Thanks to Brian and Annette for dinner, the "real food" is exactly what we needed.

Sue Y. reminded me that when others want to bring things to us we need to be gracious receivers. Thanks for giving me a little of my own medicine. I enjoy serving others and giving to others and it is harder for me to receive than to give. So thanks for stretching me. You are all so kind to us.

I think there were 105 by today. One of the nurses came through and said, "It's a shame that Grant doesn't have any friends". You are great friends to us, thanks.

Tonight please pray that we would remember God's goodness. I understand the part about "Prone to wander Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love" more clearly than I want. I need to be chained to Him so I don't forget.

Pray that Grant would continue to improve and that God would get great glory from raising him up again.

Pray that we would all get some rest and be ready for tomorrow.

Click here to read the next part, "Fathers and Sons"

Little Blue Fish

I have to give you something to laugh about.

Grant is normally very thoughtful in his answers and doesn't often answer quickly. Some of his medication they have had him on has a side effect of short term memory lose, I think:)

All day he would ask me "what day is it?" and I would say "It's Monday". A couple of minutes later I would ask him "What day is it?" and he would not have the answer. He would just say "I don't know". Kimmy was listening to all this and she said that he was Dori off of Finding Nemo. He's a good sport.

It's 10:45 and I came back from taking a shower at home so Teresa and Kimmy could go home. When I came in he asked what day he gets to go home, for the 15th time and I said "right now either Thursday or Friday". He then said "Isn't today Monday?". He remembered, just in time for it to be Tuesday. I asked him what procedures happened today and he recalled having an MRI. He is already losing his "Dori ness".

Thought you would enjoy a little humor.

I will post another in a few minutes that I've been thinking about for the last couple of hours.

Smiling at my sweet guy,

Click here to read the next part, "The Power of the Cross"


Grant is in the MRI right now. I hope he is able to sleep.

Many of the 128 and GA kids are here just hanging out and visiting. Some have gone for a walk.

When we were driving here yesterday I was listening to Chris Rice and this song really encourages me every time I hear it.

I hope that you will read the words slowly and meditate on the fact that His is the source of every blessing.

1. Come Thou Fount of every blessing
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I'm fixed upon it,
Mount of God's unchanging love.

2. Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Hither by Thy help I'm come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.

3. O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be!
Let that grace now like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here's my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

4. O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.

How sweet will that day be?

Grant is staying in his current room for the night, there are no extra rooms on another floor right now. If rooms were available he is good enough shape to leave CCU:)

Please pray that we would be sensitive to others around us in the waiting room. 48 hours ago we were emotionally lower than we are now, and now there is much rejoicing from us, but others are really hurting.

Pray that we would have an impact for Christ on the staff here. This is not about luck, or Grant's age or physical prowess. It's about God deciding that he gets to stay with us.

Thank you for all of your encouragement back to us. We love you all and you are a blessing to us.

We are lacking nothing and have much more than we could ask or think.

Bound tightly to the King,

Click here to read the next part, "Little Blue Fish"

I Know You

We are still having many visitors and Grant knows them all when they come in. Some of the guys that Grant has worked with in the summer came by, and Grant hasn't seen one of them since 2006, and as soon as he walked in Grant knew exactly who he was and extended his hand to shake it. Wow, how fun is that.

The Bowers are here right now and Grant is visiting with them.

Grant is getting to eat; he has been very hungry and we know he is doing better because he is taking big bites. He takes very big bites.

The cardiologist came by and they performed the eco-cardiogram, but this one they did by putting a scope into his stomach so they can get a closer look at his heart rhythms and blood flows and what the heart muscles look like. It's called a TEE, Trans Esophageal Eco-Cardiogram.

I'll try to shorten this up as much as possible. He has a thing called non-compaction, which abbreviated means his heart muscles are not formed as tightly as they could be, and this effects the performance. The doctor said this is very rare, about 25-30 cases a year in America, and often a cardiologist doesn't see a real live case of this in their career. They study it in school, but it is very rare. There apparently is no real treatment and this may or may not have been the cause of the event.
They call his cardiac arrest an event. I'll say:)

They are going to do a MRI at 4:30ish today because after the ICD, the defibrillator, is placed he will not be able to have a routine MRI again, as it is metallic.

They are going to try to move him out of CCU this afternoon, praise God, and then they will probably do the ICD on Wed.

The doctor said he would probably go home on Thursday evening or Friday and obviously have some check ups after that.

She encouraged Grant with the fact that she has a few very good golfers that have ICDs. I think that was something he needed to hear. Again, he took the "no golf for 4-6 weeks" pretty hard. He doesn't get excited about too many things, so when he has something he really enjoys we try to make that happen. God knows and cares for even the smallest details of our lives and Grant needs to rest on His promise that He will give him the desires of his heart.

I am so proud of Grant and his influence on so many people's lives. He really is a special, sweet young man, which is evident by how you are all responding to him being here.

He is doing great. Please continue to pray for him. This is still not a short race.

Pray that the doctors would have wisdom as they treat him.

Pray that we would be a very bright light in this dark place.

Pray that we would be sensitive to the needs of others in and around the hospital. We have seen a large emotional spectrum ourselves, and as we are rejoice for what God has done so far in Grant, many here are not having the same outcome, and many I'm sure don't know the Lord.

Pray that Grant would start to get some of his short-term memory back. He won't be cramming for any tests any time soon:)

Col. 3:1 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

You will see that he is now in a chair, out of the bed. You will also see that he is standing up, w/o assistance, and he moves himself in the chair very freely. He just looks like he is very tired.

I'll keep you posted.

Rejoicing in awe of God goodness,

Here is the link to a Flickr set with Grant's progress from Saturday to Monday.

Grant Standing!
Grant Standing!

Grant Sitting in the Chair
Grant in the Chair

Click here to read the next part, "MRI"

Where Does Our Help Come From?

Psalm 121

1 I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

3 He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;

4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

5 The LORD watches over you—
the LORD is your shade at your right hand;

6 the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.

7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;

8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

I was just singing this song in my head from Scott and Jody Frankfurt's CD. What a sweet reminder that He is in charge of every step. This is a song for going up to Jerusalem to worship and this was for them to be reminding themselves of How good God is. This is a marker song.

Since God made my Grant's heart, and all of creation, I think I should trust He knows what He is doing with it right now.

Thinking of you Scottie:)

Click here to read the next part, "I Know You"

Quick Update

Grant's temp has gone down to 98.7 from 101, so good news.

He is very alert and understands everything we talk to him about, he just can't remember what the answer to the question he just asked 5 minutes ago. We have told him it is Monday about 5 times already and he always says "really?".

The doctor was very encouraged with his progress and said she thought that they would move him to the chair today. He will be glad to get out of the bed even for a little bit.

The doctor told him that she didn't think they were going to allow him to play competitive sports from here on out, but golf was probably okay. He was visibly saddened when she told him that he would probably not be able to play for 6 weeks. His face sunk and he said that would mean he would miss state. He loves golf.

All of your comments are so encouraging, sorry I can't respond to them all. For those of you who are just reading my posts, you will be just as encouraged by reading the comments as from reading the blog.

I'll give you more later. It's sweet to be here visiting with the family and to have Grant ask us "when do I get to go home?"

God is good and He blesses us more than we deserve.

Click here to read the next part, "Where Does Our Help Come From?"

48 Hours

Ps. 117:1 Praise the LORD, all you nations;
extol him, all you peoples.

2 For great is his love toward us,
and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever.
Praise the LORD.

At about 8:20am, 48 hrs ago, I got a phone call I won't forget while I'm alive on earth.

Life can change really fast and what seems important one minute doesn't seem important at all then next.

The night was uneventful, which is great. I'm sitting here talking to Grant and I just made him laugh. He doesn't remember anything that has happened to him in the last 24 hrs. even the things we have told him just an hour ago. I told him if he kept asking me the same question it would be like talking to Teresa. She has to ask the same question 4 different ways to see if you will give her the same answer. I think she is just trying to keep us honest. We love our "Ninja-CPR giving-Lifesaver-Mom".

The sun is shining through our window and The Son is shining in our hearts as we rejoice that He has given us another day with our sweet Grant. He looks great. He is uncomfortable, which is good because he knows what he likes, which is better than not knowing anything.

Lam. 3:21 Yet this I call to mind
and therefore I have hope:

22 Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.

23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.

24 I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him."

25 The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him,
to the one who seeks him;

26 it is good to wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD.

Grant is going to have another Eco-cardiogram today to compare it to the 2 he has had in the past 2 days. I think they are still trying to make sure there is nothing obvious going on, but I'm not completely sure.

We will probably discuss the timing of the next procedure and then we will have to wait to see how he feel and reacts to everything.

He looks amazing for what he has gone through.

Please know that we love you all and relish your prayers. We love having you come by and visit us. Grant will probably not be seeing anyone until after the defibrillator procedure is done and they move him to another room. So come if you like, no pressure, and be encouraged by the others that are here.

The prayer requests are the same as last night and as soon as I know more I will give you an update.

Grant wants to read the blog and since he is awake I'll have him try to load the pictures onto it. No promises, but Grant in his state is much more "techy" than I am in my normal state.

Praise God from whom all blessings low.
Praise Him for He gives us life and breathe.
Praise Him for His faithfulness at night, and in the morning.

Our God is GOOD!

Rejoicing with my son, in the sun and in The Son,

Click here to read the next part, "Quick Update"

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Day Two in the Books

Well, I really don't know where to start this one in a new and fresh way, except that restating that God is Good doesn't seem to get stale.

Yesterday afternoon was pretty crazy. I forgot to tell you about Grant's "check-in". The nurse had told me she needed to enter Grant's information into the computer for history and of course billing. So we started going through the screen and let me tell you that if I wrote this story line, I wouldn't write it as my "Granter" arrived at the hospital by ambulance, with a V-fib arrest, and a "code". Our kids are not "supposed" to get this kind of a story line. Dad can get that, but not the kids. Old people get this, but not healthy kids. But God is the Writer and He gets to write it the way He sees best. I think if it were up to us we would only let mean people have this kind of line. For those who are reading this who know Grant, you know he really doesn't fall into the mean category.

So while driving this morning to the hospital I was resigned to the fact that today would probably be uneventful, Grant would most likely not move much, or at all, and we were certainly not guaranteed anything connected to any brain functions.

The doctor informed me this morning that they really are not excited about anyone being without a pulse for more than 5 minutes. Grant had no pulse of his own for 40 minutes. Without help from Teresa and 2 sets of paramedics this story would be much different. One of our friend had talked to some of the paramedics and found out that they were encouraged by the ease of delivering an airway to Grant, but were surprised how difficult it was to get his heart to restart. Apparently when the younger crowd get a defibrillator shock they normally "wake" right up, but God had a different plan for Grant. He is the One who controls every single heartbeat. God is also the only One who rightfully can showoff, and for this dad, I'm happy He was showing off how powerful He really is. Remember that God allowed Lazarus to die so that His glory could be shown in Jesus raising him from the dead. If Grant were an easy case then this would have not been so miraculous.

So we came in and Grant's temp was purposefully low, he was in a medically paralyzed state, and of course he was very still. Our paramedic friend told me that we should be encouraged because he had seen many cases that looked much more grim than Grant's, and they had walked out shortly after. That was about 15 minute before the serious change for the better. Thanks for the encouragement Tim.

I talked to Jen G. and she was telling me that Joint Heirs had a very fervent prayer time about the same time, plus or minus 5 minutes, that God changed Grant's condition. He went from no response to watching people and squeezing fingers and starting to talk. James 5:16 The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much!! Thank you to everyone around the world praying for us. Jesse M is mapping out the locations of everyone we know is praying for Grant and we will send you a link. We know right now from Israel to Hawaii. WOW!

So now, 10 something pm Grant is doing amazing. He is very tired. BUT he talks and understands everything that people are talking about. He told Teresa "I love you mom" around 7pm, he was changing the channel on the tv and watching Shrek. He looks great and seems to have full understanding of what's going on. OH our God is good!!!
Remember the markers.

So what lies ahead? He still needs to have a defibrillator implanted, he still is very weak, he may have an infection of some sort and there is much left to do in terms of rehab.

His body has been turned off completely for an entire 24 hr period and was subjected to a serious medical sedation. This will take sometime to get out of his system, only to have another surgery and get more sedation. For those of you who have had a general anesthesia you know exactly what I'm talking about.

The positive is; he is young and very strong.
Some markers are; he already has picked up both of his legs at one time, like doing those crazy leg lifts we used to do in school. Yesterday he was "Dead" and today he is doing calisthenics:)

Most of all God must not be finished with him yet.

Teresa and I talked about one of her markers this morning. God didn't allow Grant to have his cardiac arrest while he was sleeping. Just one hour earlier and this would most likely be a different story. She wouldn't have heard him fall and so his heart would have been off for at least an entire hour before, maybe, she would have gone up to find him. Oh our Heavenly Father is kind.

I spoke the other day for an Academy event and I talked a little about our children being a great investment. How good is God in allowing our family to continue with Grant.

How good is God when 77 people, who love Grant and our family, showed up yesterday. Someone started a guest registry for us in the waiting room. Today was Easter so people had much more to do with their families and it is the Lord's day and we had 109 people. How sweet is that. Kimmy made the rule that if you come more than once in one day you don't get counted twice, but you do earn more love points from us:) So around 186 people have been here to encourage our family. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Pray that Grant would fight off infection. He is running a slight temp right now.

Pray that the docs would know the right time for the next procedure.

Pray that Garrett and Teresa would be able to erase yesterday morning and go right to the fact that they saved his life. Mom's having a hard time, even though she did exactly the right thing and she did it the right way. Kids don't need to see their sibling in this condition. But God even has a plan for this as well.

Pray that Teresa would be able to rest.

Pray that the Gospel would go forth even in Grant's "Imprisonment" as many are watching the body come along side and they know there is something very different about these people.

He looks like Grant again.

Heb. 13:20 May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, 21equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.

Resting in His care and trusting in His promises,

Click here to read the next part, "48 Hours"

Resurrection Day (Part 3)

Well the day dawned rainy and we were wondering how deep the water would be that God would lead us through. I was reminded that God doesn't give us anything we can't handle and we were trusting that He would keep His promise, as He always does.

As you have seen through the previous post, He is more than faithful.

Grant has just had his breathing tube removed, as he is fine breathing w/o it. He is able to look at the person speaking and blinks his eyes when you ask him to.

As you will see in the picture of before and after he is doing much better just in the amount of hardware on him. He is intentionally giving you all a thumbs up even though it doesn't look like much, it is intentional. God is good.

I just wanted to keep you up to date and I'll get you more later.This day is more than we could ever ask or think.

By the way, I can do a marathon if someone carries me.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Celebrating the Resurrection,

Grant on Saturday
Grant on Saturday

Grant Without the Breathing Tube Sunday Morning! Praise God!
Grant Sunday Morning

This is Thumb's Up!!!
This is "Thumb's Up!"

Click here to read the next part, "Day Two in the Books"

Resurrection Day (Part 2)

Luke 15:23 And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.' And they began to celebrate.

God is still good!!!

This morning we came to the hospital expecting to wait by Grant's bed and have not much, or no response, to stimulus. But, as I posted previously, God is full of surprises.

The doctors took Grant off the sedation medication so they could start to monitor whether his brain was functioning properly. He was very cold all night, the way they wanted him to be, so it would normally take a while for his temperature to rise and then they would see what would happen. This brings new meaning to waiting on the Lord. Waiting takes too long for me normally, but I was ready to wait this time.

We have Grant's "smiley" picture up on his bed so we can remember what he really looks like.
As the meds start to come off and his temperature is rising he starts to move his hands trying to take the tube out of his throat. This is exactly what the doctors wanted him to do. They said this is much faster than they expected but I don't think they were counting on how BIG God is.

Almost right away I could start to see his eyes open slightly and begin moving in the direction the noise was coming from. He was trying to turn his head but the neck brace was holding him still. The nurse came in and talked to him about being in the hospital and how yesterday his heart stopped. He was listening. She asked him to squeeze his eyes shut, and he did. Then to move his thumb and he did.

My son was dead and now he is alive. How good is God?

There is a long road for Grant ahead, but this is an awesome first step. I'll post more today as we know more.

Ps 2o:7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

Celebrating the Resurrection Day with new meaning,

Click here to read the next part, "Resurrection Day (Part 3)"

Resurrection Morning

Luke 24:1On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.' " 8Then they remembered his words.

9When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.

As I was trying to sleep too many thoughts were inside my head. I'm thinking this morning that God likes to glorified and magnify Himself, like looking through a telescope, in a surprising way. Jesus had been telling the disciples all along exactly what was going to happen. But Jesus knows the heart and He knew they didn't fully understand what He was telling them, but He had a surprise for them.

Can you imagine the look on their faces when the tomb was really empty and now they understood what He had been telling them all along? They had to be like Jr. high girls at a sleep over, all of them so excited they couldn't stand it. He's Alive.

Well, it is Easter morning. I called the hospital and the nurse said they have given Grant a medication that will not allow him to shiver at all. They have him cooled to 31c which is appr 89f so that his body will put all the energy it has into the brain and heart recovery, but this makes Grant very cold. Shivering takes energy and that is wasted energy.

Other than that he had an uneventful night. Dr. Chung, the cardiologist, will be happy with that news. No events right now are good.

As I listen to a quiet house, the only noises are the refrigerator hum and Teresa's occasional wave of emotion comes over her. She is so tender hearted and yesterday will be hard for her to forget.

I was reminded of the Israelites putting up markers where they traveled to remind them of the good things that God had done for them. We had so many markers yesterday, so many good things that we are able to focus on God's goodness to us. Many of you are those markers and we will probably cry with joy when we see you because you were part of Day 1 in our lives.

We want to be like Joshua and not be afraid of the "giants in the land". We must remember that God carried us yesterday through "the sea". That means today we are in the desert, but that also means we are in a place where God is our sole provider.

James 1:2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

16Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. 18 Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of his creatures.

God is the giver of good things. Please pray that we would remember those good things today while running "the marathon".

Pray for Teresa, Kimmy and Garrett that they would see the good.

Pray that I would see the good as well and be able to focus them on the truth.

Phil. 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Our God is worthy of our praise.

We need to worship like we mean it.

The Invitation
By Steven Curtis Chapman

In the palace in the land of mercy
The king looked out from his throne
He saw the sick and the homeless and hungry
He saw me lost and without hope
And moved with compassion
He sent out his only son
With the invitation to come

This is your invitation
Come just the way you are
Come find what your soul has been longing for
Come find your peace
Come join the feast
Come in this is your invitation

So I stood outside the gates and trembled
In my rags of unworthiness
Afraid to even stand at a distance
In the presence of holiness
But just as I turned to go
The gates swung open wide
And the king and his only son
They invited me inside

So now will you come with me
To where the gates swing open wide
The king and his only son
Are inviting us inside

This is our invitation
Come sinner as you are
Come find what your soul has been longing for
Come find your peace
Come join the feast
Come in this is your invitation
This is our invitation
This is the invitation

Rejoicing in Hope,

Click here to read the next part, "Resurrection Day (Part 2)"

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Night One

We came home because the doctor told us this is going to be a marathon and we would need to be ready and rested tomorrow morning. It was hard to leave my little buddy.
Everything at home reminds me of him, even the quiet. He is so quiet. His golf clubs are sitting on the loft ready for him to come and practice as he watches the golf channel.
His room. Someone came and cleaned it up so it isn't messy any more. Thank you to who whomever did that.
His car was sitting in the driveway. He loves his car. I miss Grant.

In the hospital our family was reminded of how the church body is supposed to work. We were far more overwhelmed by 75 or 80 people showing up to hang out and encourage us and be with Grant than by the weight of what we are facing right now. Thank you Grace Bible Church, one28 and Grace Academy for loving our Grant and loving us enough to spend the day with us. You don't know how much it means.

Tomorrow is Easter morning. The day Jesus rose from the grave. The day Christ conquered death. I want Him to raise my son up again, but I don't know what He has planned.

This gives me a small glimpse into the Father's love for His Son. I wouldn't want to give up my son for a bunch of people who hated Him. BUT our good God was pleased to give us His Son that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. We have been given so much more than we deserve.

Please pray for Teresa and Garrett that they would be able to erase much of what they witnessed up close and personal. Teresa said there is no way she could have done what she did today w/o Garrett's help and strength. Dad's are supposed to be there when things like this happen to "fix" it, but I wasn't there. It's a good thing I have an awesome wife and 2 great sons. We'll certainly keep Kimmy as well.

Pray that the doctors will know exactly what to do in every situation. Grant is an unusual case and not everything works normally on him. Pray they would have insight into things they don't even know about. God can do that for Grant.
Pray that God would not be finished with Grant, because God finishes what He starts.
We love you Grant and there are many people praying for you all over the world tonight. How good is that?

Weeping for my son, but trying to be joyful in His Son,

Click here to read the next part, "Resurrection Morning"