Waiting…

Like Tom Petty once put it in song, “The waiting is the hardest part.”  And that’s where we’re at these days.  We’re waiting for further tests and scans to be done this week that will give a better picture of what, if anything, is going on with Susana.

The good news is that the MIBG scan did not show any solid tumor, so that was definitely a sigh of relief.  But because neuroblastoma grows at the cellular level, there may be something going on that the MIBG scan would not pick up, we don’t know.  So, she is scheduled for several tests in the next few days and the results of these tests should let us know if anything is going on.  These tests were already scheduled prior to her getting a fever and such, so it is not like the doctors are ordering all of these tests because they think something might be wrong.  These were already scheduled because she just finished her proton therapy treatment and is now about to begin her antibody therapy, so they need all new tests before starting the antibody therapy.

Susana is feeling better each day it seems.  But today is only the first day that she has not had a fever.  So, she had this low grade fever for 7 days straight.  This was very concerning.  I was going to take her to the doctor this morning if she still had a fever, but the fever finally went away, and she told me that she was feeling better today.  She has been eating a little here and there, and I have to force her to drink at least 12 – 15 ounces of fluid each day.  That has been painful because it is so hard to have to force her to drink when she is crying and crying saying that she does not want to drink.  It just does something to my emotions every time.  Just to get her to take about 3 or 4 sips seems to take a long, not always convincing, conversation that can either lead me to tears after I walk away or mere frustration.  But the doctors have told me that she needs to drink.  So, we do what we need to do.

But today has definitely been better.  She has been eating more and not complaining when I tell her to take some sips of water.  So, that is a relief.  I spoke to the nurse at the clinic today and told her about the low grade fever.  The doctor said that as long as it was getting progressively better, that I would not have to bring her in today and could just wait until tomorrow for her scheduled appointment.  So, we are home now.  She is just watching movies on my bed, and she definitely looks much better today.  I am so praying that this whole thing is nothing more than a virus.  I have been sick myself with just some congestion/cold, but nothing major.

So, tomorrow morning we go to the clinic for a bone marrow aspiration.  Then Wednesday she has a CAT scan and then Thursday she has a bone scan or MRI or something like that.  Once these tests have been done, we should know more about what is going on.  I’ll keep you all posted.

Thanks so much for all your prayers and words of encouragement.  It has been a most challenging week.  I’m so thankful to know that the Lord is with me and my family no matter what state of mind we are in or how “good” we are doing.  I was talking to Maria about this the other day after listening to a wonderful song by Christy Nochels (one of my favorite worship leaders) called “Healing is in your Hands.”  Anyway, the truth is that it had been a couple of very hard days for me and instead of pressing into the Lord and seeking Him with all my heart, I was kind of checked out.  I just didn’t want to press in.  I was tired.  My emotions were all over the place.  I just wanted to veg out.  I didn’t even read my bible or spend time with the Lord for several days.  And I probably felt guilty about even that…that here my daughter was suffering and possibly getting sick again, and instead of me falling to my knees and praying without ceasing, instead I’m checking out and just not wanting to “go there.”  Have you ever been there before?  Me too.

So, I was in my car on my way to meet with a few mission partners and still in that place of wanting to “check out.”  So, I do what anybody else does who wants to “check out” and not think about anything while driving…I turned up the music…L-O-U-D.  I had that system cranking.  I was playing my iphone through the stereo and had it on shuffle.  So, one minute I’m blasting out to “Dear X” by Disciple, but then right after, Chris Tomlin’s “How Great is Our God” might come up.  And honestly, I didn’t want to hear worship music, so I would hit skip until another loud song came up.  (Yes…a little glimpse into Cody’s “super spiritual” life)

But here’s what I know to be true no matter what:  I am a child of God.  He loves me so much.  I am His.  I cannot get away from Him even if I think I want to.  Like David states in Psalm 139, “Where can I flee from your presence?”  And for the child of God, the answer is simple:  Nowhere!  I cannot get away from the Lord even when I try.  And when all the smoke clears, and all my running takes me nowhere special, I am most thankful for that truth…I cannot get away from Him.  He will have His way with me.  And that’s when I surrender in safety.

So, in the midst of me trying to escape through the loud blaring sounds of Disciple, I break down and just start crying.  I cry and cry even as my ear drums are on the verge of breaking.  And I sense the nearness of God.  And I know that He is with me…always.  So, the loud song ends and a Christy Nochels song “Healing is in your Hands” comes up.  I picked up my iphone and was about to hit skip, but then I just felt like I needed to hear this song.  I maybe only heard it once before and didn’t really know what it was about.  So, I listened to it and just asked the Lord to minister to my tired heart.  I can’t remember every verse, but the chorus states something like “No matter where I stand, healing is in your hands.”  And that word just spoke to my heart in the most profound way.

It tells me that no matter where I am, healing is in the hands of God.  Like no matter where I am spiritually (have I been reading my bible and spending time with the Lord every day? Or have I “checked out” for a season because I feel too overwhelmed?), it does not matter.  Healing is in HIS hands.  And no matter where I am emotionally (Have I been experiencing the joy of the Lord as my strength?  Or have I been a miserable and irritable grump?), it does not matter.  Healing is in HIS hands.  It truly reflects the sovereignty of God for which I am so thankful to understand and embrace.  It’s in HIS hands.  He will do however He chooses and that does not depend on my performance, whether ultra awesome or failing miserably.   It does not depend on my love.  It does not depend on me.  It all depends on HIM.  Oh how comforting that is to my soul.

And so, as I remember that healing is in HIS hands and that it has nothing at all to do with me, I am comforted.  I come to understand the love of the Lord more by this revelation…and that leads me to “check back in” realizing yet again like the psalmist so eloquently states, “Whom have I in heaven, but You?  And on earth, there is nothing I desire besides You.  My heart and my flesh will fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”  Why He loves me so, I shall never fully know on this side of heaven…but I gladly receive it.

8 thoughts on “Waiting…

  1. Hi Cody, As I am reading this my heart is breaking and my eyes filled with tears. Please hold on dear one. You have so much on your plate right now. Even the most spiritual of the saints gets to the point of “checking out” as you put it. I know the Lord is going to bring you and your girls through this and you will be better than ever. I have never met you guys (I hope to someday when you are in the Hockessin area) but I have been following your ministry ever since you went to Haiti. I have come to love you all like you were my own. Just know that there are a lot of folks out here praying for you and holding you up.

  2. so thankful to read that the fever is down. we love your family and will continue to lift you up to the Father!
    love~the gibsons

  3. Praise God! Sounds SOOOOOO encouraging. Some of the most powerful believers I know have been praying for her and y0u guys too. Please dont feel bad for being human – God created us that way afterall. Give all my love – Stephanie and I need an address to send her package to and it is something she can give out to other kids at the hospital because many items come by the dozen. Could you email it to me?

  4. So hard . . .the waiting. We all hope she’s now getting over something ordinary like the flu, a cold, a virus and that she’s going to be feeling better with every passing day. Meantime, prayer continue and you are all in our thoughts as she goes through the testing over the next week..

  5. Cody, you have no idea how you have ministered to my soul today through this journal. You have encouraged my heart and brought me back to God’s throne with thanksgiving and praise. Thank you for sharing your heart, even when it is painfully honest and raw. I’m sure I speak on behalf of many others as well – God is using you as much to us American Christians as He is to the Haitians! I look forward to meeting you someday – perhaps on the golden streets!

  6. Thank you for your post, and hearing the good report of the scan. How many times I have also been there….”checking out” when I should be “checking in”. God is still on the throne and His tender mercies restore and draw us back again and again. He loves us so much, and shows such grace when I don’t deserve it. We are only human, desiring to be more like Christ, but falling short agian and again. But, Great IS our God, and Great IS His faithfulness to us!! I am praying for you all!!

  7. Isaiah 51:12 says, “I, even I, am He that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid…”
    Psalm 57:1, “Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteh in Thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.”
    Psalm 57:5, “Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens; let thy glory be above all the earth.”
    Psalm 57:7, “My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.”

    “Praise be to the Lord, for He has heard my cry for mercy. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song.” Psalm 28: 6-7

    “Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” Psalm 27:14

    God, my God, I cry out:
    Your beloved needs You now
    God, be near; calm my fear
    … And take my doubt

    Your kindness is what pulls me up
    Your love is all that draws me in

    [Chorus]
    I will lift my eyes to the Maker
    Of the mountains I can’t climb
    I will lift my eyes to the Calmer
    Of the oceans raging wild
    I will lift my eyes to the Healer
    Of the hurt I hold inside
    I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes to You

    God, my God, let mercy sing
    Her melody over me
    And God, right here all I bring
    Is all of me

    Your kindness is what pulls me up
    Your love is all that draws me in

    [Chorus]
    I will lift my eyes to the Maker
    Of the mountains I can’t climb
    I will lift my eyes to the Calmer
    Of the oceans raging wild
    I will lift my eyes to the Healer
    Of the hurt I hold inside
    I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes to You

    [Bridge]
    ‘Cause You are and You were and You will be forever
    The Lover I need to save me
    ‘Cause You fashioned the earth and You hold it together, God
    So hold me now

    [Chorus]
    I will lift my eyes to the Maker
    Of the mountains I can’t climb
    I will lift my eyes to the Calmer
    Of the oceans raging wild
    I will lift my eyes to the Healer
    Of the hurt I hold inside
    I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes to You
    I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes to You

    God, my God, I cry out:
    Your beloved needs You now…..

  8. God has commanded His angels to bring forth the Body of Christ to stand by your side, to hold your hand and to pray your prayers Cody. All Glory & Honor to God on High! There is no not one thing above the Holy Name of the Lord! Hallelujah! Claiming God’s Healing Hands Comfort You & Heal You, Pour Out Your Blessings Lord to cover your servants Cody & Maria and Deliver Your Healing Waters to Flow through Susana’s every cell Lord God Almighty for Your Glory Amen!
    I am Blessed to Call You Friends
    Keeping you close in heart & prayer
    Carol

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