(These next few posts may seem familiar. We wanted to repost some of our Caring Bridge journal entries in order to allow new followers to hear our story from the beginning. We also have added in some pictures and reflections. Added reflections will be bolded and italicized. This is the second of a three part series. If you missed Part 1, you can read it here.)
Journal Entry 4 — Follow up
Today we go back to Loyola for Brad’s post opt appointment with our neurosurgeon. His staples should be coming out today! (Prayers that this isn’t a painful process….)
I’m sure we’ll be going over more information, and we will do our best to update within the next day or two. (Sometimes we need some time to process before sharing publicly)
Overall Brad is recovering really well from surgery. I’m amazed at how well he is doing and give all glory to God for this! Thank you for the continuous prayers and support. We have been so blessed with cards, gift cards, meals, texts, and surprise gifts. We are so overwhelmed by how amazing God’s community has been to us, it is truly amazing and humbling.
Ways that you can support us in prayer:
–That our appointment today (11:15) goes well, pathology reports are better than expected, and that getting the staples removed goes smoothly.
–Guidance and wisdom as we navigate what treatment path we are taking, and what God’s plan is for our family.
–Prayers for Grace and Sadie as they realize things aren’t exactly “normal” and to give them comfort and strength
–And of course for God’s miraculous healing power!
Our THANKFUL prayers:
–How well Brad is recovering, we have seen so much improvement in such a short time
–How much we have felt God through this all, in comfort, and his leading us
–We’ve had needs met, before we’ve even had to ask
–The goodness and faithfulness of our community taking care of us. (We still to this day are astonished at how generous and helpful everyone has been towards us. Not only have our needs been met, we have been blessed in so many other ways.)
We have been reminded of this Fred Rogers quote (one of my favorites):
“My mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers — so many caring people in this world.”
Brad, Lindsey, Grace and Sadie
Journal Entry 5
We decided to give a “mini update” as we know many are anxiously waiting.
We saw the neurosurgeon yesterday, they still are waiting on one piece of the pathology report. For now, they are thinking it is a Grade 3 Anaplastic Astrocytoma (cancerous brain tumor). We were actually told this about a week ago by the oncologist but wanted to wait for the actual report.
Brads had some genetic testing come back from the pathology report that the doctor said are in his favor, which is encouraging. The missing piece of the pathology report is what we need MAJOR prayers for right now. If this piece comes back in his favor, the tumor could potentially drop to a Grade 2. (Which would mean it is less aggressive, and slower growing.)
We have already seen God answering our prayers, and know we have an unbelievable amount of people praying for us. So specific prayers for this would be greatly appreciated! We should know in the next couple days the final result.
We understand the heaviness of all of this information, but we want to make sure you all know that God has been showing us clarity in His plan, and giving us times of peace and hope as well. (This has been a constant blessing for us. We are so thankful to see God’s hand through this storm, which has allowed this journey to be easier for us to navigate.
Thank you for everyones support, and please just keep PRAYING! Our God is good, and hears our prayers.
Brad and Lindsey
Journal Entry 6 — The Official Diagnosis
Hello friends and family,
I just want to say, again how truly blessed we are. Words can not express our deepest gratitude for all the love, support, prayers, meals, gifts and everything you all have done for us. We have such an amazing support of family, friends and some we have never met and are blown away by your generosity.
We did receive a call from the doctor with my final results that we were waiting on. It is a Grade 3 Anaplastic Astrocytoma. We were told by our doctors that this is considered incurable. They recommended radiation and chemo for prolongment of life. So not the results we were praying for, but we take comfort in knowing that God has a plan.
After we got the news we were struggling on what we were going to do. Over the last few years we have acquired a holistic approach to health and wellness. Going the conventional route just did not feel right (especially since my own doctors told me it won’t cure me). Ultimately, we took it to God. We prayed HARD for God to make it clear to us what he wanted us to do. We then went to God’s word (actually my daughter’s children’s bible) and the story of Joshua and the battle of Jericho was presented to us.
Joshua was given instructions by God to defeat Jericho in a very nonconventional way. He was told to not use the sword and spear like what was to be expected going into battle, but instead to act in faith and do it God’s way. Through this story God made it clear that conventional treatment was not for us. We are going to battle this alternatively and we are still seeking out the best option for my particular case.
Meanwhile we are incorporating everything we have learned over the years to get my body, mind and spirit as healthy as we possibly can. We are doing this through diet, supplementation, essential oils (God’s medicine) and by spending a lot of time in the Word and in prayer.
We continue to feel blessed through this experience. Lindsey and I both feel called to be loud like the Israelite’s on their last march around the city. We feel called to share our testimony (even though it might make us feel uncomfortable). (Unknown foreshadowing for the blog??)
Ways that you can lift us up in prayer
– God continues to direct our path with clarity
– Keep us strong and courageous through this battle
– Protection over our children
– God will use us to reach others
– For complete healing
We invite you to read through the book of Joshua with our family. (And if you have the Jesus Storybook Bible, read the Jericho story!)
” …Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
“…Whatever you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go.” Joshua 1:16
Thanks again for all the love and support
Brad and Lindsey
Journal Entry 7 — Prayer Service
Our church (Faith CRC in Tinley Park) is hosting a Prayer Service for Brad Wednesday Oct. 23rd at 7:00 CST. We know so many people are fervently praying for us, so we thought we’d extend the invite to pray WHEREVER you are between 7-8 CST. (Or please join us at church!) How cool would it be to have prayers being lifted up to God from across the nation, all at the same time. There is mighty power in people praying together, so we would love for you to join us. (We had an unbelievable turn out that night. We also found out after the prayer service there were many prayer groups and people praying all over the nation, even in other countries. It was truly a powerful night.)
“Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him, and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous man is powerful and effective.” James 5:14-16
“Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.” John 14:13-14