Hello readers and friends,
I asked my husband to write down a few thoughts regarding his upcoming open-heart surgery. This is what he came up with. Hope you enjoy it and are encouraged about any trials you may be facing:
As I sit here and think about my life thus far, a tsunami of emotions and thoughts rushes through my mind. I have finally gotten over the shock/disbelief of hearing the news…”You have 4 blockages and need triple bypass”. But, at times the flesh kicks in and says, “You are not ready for this”. Even with all the conflicting emotions I’ve experienced, I still feel the peace of God, knowing He loves me too much for me not to trust Him. I also have spent some time thinking about the good that will come from this. No longer will I be at high risk for sudden death, as I am now. My priorities will be different than they’ve been before, and…I will feel better due to new clear arteries and a change in diet.
This event has also caused me to reflect on how God’s hand has been in even the smallest details of my life. Little did I know that over 37 years ago, God would orchestrate a swim team carpool with a boy named Sam who would later turn out to be my cardiologist. After high school, I had lost contact with Sam for over 13 years until we ran into each other at the local hospital where I was a manager. Then, a few weeks ago, there we were having a casual conversation at lunch when I happened to mention some episodes of fluttering heartbeat I had recently started having at night. I know that I would never have sought out medical advice on these very minor symptoms had it not been for the relationship I had with my childhood friend.
One of my favorite passages, which I have been meditating on since my diagnosis is Isaiah 40:28-31. Particularly, “the Lord is the everlasting God, the creator of the ends of the earth” (v28), and “those whose hope is in the Lord will renew strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk an not faint”(v31).
Although, I am not looking forward to the procedure or the recovery (who would?), and although I was blind-sided by this, I am reminded of the words the hymn writer scripted over 100 years ago; “Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say, it is well with my soul”. Through this experience I am looking for God to grow me stronger physically, mentally, and spiritually, and to help me to be a better husband and father than I’ve ever been. And I am grateful beyond measure that our merciful God is giving me a new lease on life!
“So, do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)
How beautiful. I know those feelings all too well and what an amazing way to have phrased what I felt 13 months ago facing my own quadruple bypass that also came out of the blue. My family asked me if I was scared and I was, really, of the unknown. But I was confident that, although it wasn’t going to be a normal day for me, it would be for my surgeon. I was glad God taught him how to cut on hearts while he taught me how to cut up with the kids. I know that this post will bless many people …. but then, your posts usually do. You are just so good at this! Best of luck (ha! — God’s grace) to you both.
Betsy…your comment touched us deeply. Thank you so much!
What a beautiful sharing of faith and vulnerability! I know that God will guide the surgeons hands.
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Thank you, Mary Lou!