Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Still Being Used in a Mighty Way

Romans 14:6a
"He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord."

Today is a special day for us. Those of you who know us really well might have one idea what we're talking about, but that's not it. I'll explain that later.

Tammy received a call this morning from her Mom. She found out that another life was saved through Tammy's illness. Let us tell the story.

When Tammy was first diagnosed with myelodysplasia, the precursor to Leukemia, many of our friends wanted to know what they could do. Tammy repeatedly told them that her desire was to have them pray for her. One of those friends decided to put wheels under her prayers.

She organized a bone-marrow drive at our church. A normal drive brings in 30-35 people, but Tammy's resulted in more than 140 people. Even the bone-marrow foundation people were impressed. We know of three people who were called as possible matches, but this is the first one we know who actually was able to donate her bone marrow to save a life.

It brought us to tears to hear of this lady. Not only was she willing to go through the process but she was willing to give life to another. We are so thankful, not only for this friend, but for the man who did the same for Tammy.

One of our friends made the following comment: "Good things can come out of suffering, and if not for you, then at least someone else! In a way, you've helped save another."

Remember that Tammy's prayer for years has been to be "used in a mighty way." Once again, God has showed us that He can use us mightily if we are willing to follow Him.

By the way, this news makes this one of the best birthdays I have ever had.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Day By Day

Psalm 90:12
"Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom."

Today is Day 548. Why is that important? One and a half years ago today, April 1, 2009, Tammy had her transplant. The first few days seemed to drag. It took forever to get to Day 100, which was the first major milestone. After 100 days, because everything went well, she was able to be alone for periods of time and do things that she hadn't been allowed to do before.

The second hundred days flew by. We hardly even noticed when we hit 300 days. As we approached Day 365, we were less captivated by the number of the days than we were the fact that she had made it through a year. We celebrated that anniversary by visiting Julie in Louisville. The following Sunday was Easter, and we worshiped as a family together for the first time since before Tammy's transplant.

The doctors number transplant patient's days to be able to follow a treatment plan. Certain things should happen at certain times. We're now past the point where each day makes a difference in that plan, but every day that passes brings Tammy closer to complete recovery. Each day, she has a better chance of living a long life than she did the day before.

The Bible talks about numbering our days. Although we're not going through a "treatment plan," our days are important to God. In a sense, he is treating us. He offers spiritual health in a world of sin and shame. Each day we live according to His will is another day closer to the day when we will be "healed," the day Jesus calls us Home with Him. In the meantime, we can live each day as an important piece of the puzzle.

"As I'm counting my days, even though I'm starting from Day 0 and the numbers are going up, I am getting closer to spending eternity with Christ," Tammy said tonight. "I'm not counting the days until I die because I don't have to wait until I die to spend time with Christ. He is with me here. But my recovery reminds me of a future with no sickness, disease or pain. The wisdom that the Bible promises me in the verse above is recognizing that God is in charge of all my days."

We hope that you look at today and the days to come as important. Every day matters to God. We might not know what "day" it is in His plan, but He does. Our prayer is that God would bless you in a way that you would see His plan more clearly.