Friday, July 4, 2014


"Do not be anxious about anything, 
but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving 
let your requests be made known to God. 
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, 
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
-Philippians 4:6-7

Ever since I can remember, I've been an anxious person. Growing up on the coast of North Carolina, storms were a way of life during the summer and I would spend hours (hours!) watching the weather forecast for a hint of what might happen, while completely missing the beautiful day that was happening. I was always fixated on the future and, more specifically, what would go wrong in said future.  There were multiple times throughout my childhood that I asked my Daddy when he would die, and I often worried about my own exit out of this world. I probably needed therapy much sooner than I actually got it!

As a teenager in youth group, Philippians 4:6-7 was one of the first verses I memorized in hopes of combating this chronic worry and anxiety.  My Bible was filled with quotes from youth camp pastors about trusting God -- the good, gracious God I had surrendered my life to years prior.  Trusting Him amidst the unknown has been, and still is, my greatest struggle when it comes to my faith.

On the flight to India, I whispered the words of those two verses over and over and over and over to myself.  I clung tight to the promise at the end, and God was faithful.  I know that His peace cleared my mind to experience and accomplish all that He wanted for me and His kingdom once I stepped off that plane.

Last week, the sermon at church was on this passage, and God's timing with that message was on point (as always!).  We had just gotten the news from Ethan's cardiology visit days prior and were literally waiting for our phone to ring and guide us into our next steps.  I needed that reminder as I answered the phone a few days later.

If you remember the options from my previous post, the Lord has given us mounds of clarity that Option C is the path to take.  For Ethan, this means that his pacemaker battery and his conduit will both be replaced in the operating room.  It's the big one and, as of yesterday, we have a date on the calendar.

On July 29th, we'll take Ethan to Duke for pre-op testing and a diagnostic cath.  He'll be admitted to the hospital after the cath and he'll go into the operating room the following day, July 30th.

I got the call while Ethan and I were staying with some dear friends of ours, who have also traveled down this road.  After hanging up with the scheduler, I burst into tears while standing in their dining room.  The mama hugged me, knowing the weight of "the date", and the realness of it all made me so sad. Over the past 24 hours, I've put Philippians 4:6-7 on repeat in my stream of consciousnesses, but today I'm just sad.

It occurs to me, though, that maybe sadness and the peace that surpasses all understanding can co-exist.  I can be sad because I know this isn't how it's supposed to be, but capital-P peace comes from placing my hope in someone not of this sinful world.  I can find peace through Jesus, knowing that He holds each minute of July 30th in His hands, and I can also be sad that those moments have to occur in the first place. This tension is the place where faith grows.

So, will you pray with us, friends? Specifically that we would all stay healthy between now and July 29th, and that Jeramie and I would make wise decisions in preparing Ethan for what's about to happen.  I can't say that I'm excited to lay my child onto another operating table, but with every passing day I can see how much his body needs this. It's because of our greater hope that we press on through the sadness, believing in the Lord's goodness and trusting in His plan for Ethan's life. I am making my requests known to God and resting in His promise, while shedding tears along the way.

"In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; 
in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation."
-Psalm 5:3

1 comment:

Sherry said...

You and Ethan will definitely be in my prayers this month. I am an anxious person too, and I can only imagine the anxiety of anticipating a major operation on your precious little one. After all he has come through, I know God's hands are on him. Lots of love and prayers for you all!

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