Monday, March 31, 2014

Always Pray and Do Not Give Up

We survived. Let’s recap.

Reese was taken by ambulance to Phoenix Children’s Hospital on March 9 with acute respiratory failure. What started as a cold, quickly turned into Pneumonia. Pneumonia took a toll on her body and she ended up on a ventilator in the middle of the night. Honestly, I wasn’t sure we were leaving the hospital with Reese at that point. I called Mario after they intubated her at 2:30 am, and we cried together and submitted ourselves and Reese to the Lord. We encouraged each other that if this was it, God would take care of her and us. It was a low low. Doesn't get much lower than that as a parent. Just sayin.

But she pulled through. She spent 7 long days on the ventilator. She got a little better every day, with a few scary moments mixed in. What they didn’t tell us that first day was that the ventilator was doing 100% of the breathing. So glad they shielded me from that frightening fact.

My goal when we entered the room in the PICU was to survive Pneumonia. I had no other goals. I wish I could say my goal was to glorify God or to grow spiritually, but no. It was primal. It was to save my daughter’s life.

There is a desperation in that place. An all out cry for help. And God met me…like he always does…but I still doubt, sometimes, that he will...THIS TIME.

A dear friend sent me a podcast to listen to. Turns out I listened to the wrong one…but it turned out to be the right one. Because it was the one I needed to hear at that moment. This gal talked about prayer. And power. And that was what I needed to hear. She reminded me about the Parable of the Persistent Widow in Luke 18 and how Jesus told his disciples to “always pray and not give up” like the widow who kept asking the judge for justice until he finally gave in…really because she was just driving him crazy with her unrelenting requests! And she reminded me of James 4:2 where James reminded believers that “we do not have because we do not ask God.”

I cannot tell you how many times over the 16 days in the PICU I laid hands on Reese, and through tears I said to Jesus, “It’s me. I’m that persistent widow. Reese’s mom. I’m asking you to heal her lungs. It’s me again. You told me to ask and keep asking. And I really believe you will heal her." And he heard me. And he heard you and the countless number of prayers from family and friends around the world. And He healed her.

On day 14 something happened. That very slow progression sped up into high gear. The doctors couldn’t explain it but her health improved dramatically, so much so that there was not time to discharge her from ICU to a regular room. 2 days later, she was ready to go home.

As we were packing up to go, Gigi, our Child Life Specialist came in to say goodbye. Her job is to play with the kids and keep the parents sane, I think. She had checked in on me every day and had been in the room during some scary moments. She said, “I don’t talk about God in my job, but I want you to know that if someone didn’t believe in God, they would after walking into this room. I can feel Him when I walk in here.” Tears streamed down my face. She apologized for upsetting me. I told her she had not upset me but completely blessed me. And I thanked her.

I was an occasionally crazy, somewhat delirious, sometimes stressed-out mom, living out my primal instinct to save my much-loved child. But God met me there because that is what HE does. He WAS in that room. He DID save Reese. He IS real. And He IS faithful to the end. So I'll leave you with something you need to remember today…pray and do not give up. Ask and keep asking. I can't say I always understand why, but God said so and I believe Him.

20 comments:

  1. Beautiful. Awesome. Inspiring. Thank you.
    Love you guys. God is good.

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  2. Beautiful. Awesome. Inspiring. Thank you.
    Love you guys. God is good.

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  3. Thanks for sharing Kerry! As i read your blog Hawk Nelson's song "Faithful" is on the radio! Your sweet Reese and your family it such a testimony GOD IS FAITHFUL! It's an honor to be a prayer warrior for you all!! :) Sending hugs, love and prayers! Oh... there is a card floating around Children's for Reese b/c I sent it when we got back to Colorado but she was released the next day! :)

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    1. Thank you, Joy! The hospital is forwarding Reese's mail to our house!! xoxo

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  4. Kerry...I just LOVE you! Jackie

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  5. I believe. I believe. Thank you for that:)

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  6. Love this and love your sweet testimony! Happy tears!

    Brit and Brookie xoxo

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  7. Yes, faithful, such is the LORD our GOD. He has made a wonderful testimony out of Reese's life for us to see that HE IS ABLE. Praise HIM! :)

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    1. Yes, He is faithful and able and worthy of our praise!

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  8. God is good. Psalm 103:1-6. PERIOD. Live LIFE! Enjoy LIFE! Rock On! ~DeAnna Sabaoth

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  9. Great testemony!

    I would add the command that Jesus made in many occasions that we have to take the authority that he gave us and talk to our problems. Like in mark 11 he answered! to the fig tree (that tree, like many of our proplems was talking to jesus, professing it had fruits, but it didnt) and so he answered and cursed it. He was talking to the tree. And when the people with him saw that it worked, he told them to speak to the mounten and cast it in to the see. We should speak to our mountans about GOD and not always talk to GOD about our mountains. He is aware of our problems, and wants us well, thats why he gave his power to us and commanded us to use this power and cast out ALL devils and unclean spirits.
    YOU speak to THE mountain and it will be cast... And other places said that YOU resist the devil and he will flee from YOU.

    I think that the reason we often have to "wait until GOD moves" is because we are waiting on him to do what he told us to do. so it really is him waiting on us, like he said in 2 peter: The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward"
    and when things get so horrible that we quit waiting on God and finally use his power and authority that he gave us to use, and we command the problems in his name to move, they move.

    so yes, it often takes a long time to solve difficult situations, but not because it takes us a long time to move GOD, but because it takes GOD long time to move us.

    Its a great thing that testimonies like this appear and there sould be more put up on the net, cause he said that whosoever believed on him these signs should follow them!

    GOD bless

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  10. Crying tears of joy with you, and praising God for what he has done in your precious little Reese. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us.

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  11. oh man this makes me so happy! heard the request from Brian Head Welch and I have been praying! think about how you can use this in your testimony! Praise God

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  12. I don't know you. I only know Mario through a Y.L. connection at my church. He came to check out our youth group in Tucson once. But, I have kept up with Reese's progress through the posts on his site. Thank you so much for sharing this experience. I can tell you that I lifted her, and you up daily. She reminds me so much of our 5 yr. old Anna, and I couldn't help but feel what it would be like to have to go through that with her. We'll keep on praying. Thank you so much for letting us into your struggle. And for sharing your victory. Praise God for his faithfulness, his love for Reese and for you guys.
    Derek Cheatham, Youth Pastor, Fellowship Bible Church, Tucson.

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Thanks for taking the time!