6/1/15 (Elijah) 

A quick note from Haley: 

“Last night, around Elijah’s bed, a few people gathered for the privilege of praying, and walking with him [and Brenna] through the storm. They told him that he wasn’t hurting alone, because members of Christ’s body from all corners of the world (you all) were hurting and praying with him. We’re sure he could hear, too, because his breathing steadied for a bit. 

His mercy is near to us every moment of every day, and —our anchor holds.”

Beautiful words from Brenna, Elijah’s mother:

***

Air rushes through the hose past Elijah’s trach tube. The nurses talk loudly at their station. The feeding tube machine grinds noisily through the night.  Occasionally, there is a code blue or code red announced over the intercom, and every hour and a half or so Elijah will cough.  Beads of sweat profusely roll down his face as he deals with yet another storm.  

These are the sights and sounds of the ICU.

God.  The Giver of Good Gifts.  

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.”   John 3:16

God gave Elijah to us. Entering our 4th week without hearing Elijah’s voice, seeing his smile, his eyes, without simply living life with him. . . we miss him. Terribly. Life is not the same. It is also sometimes difficult to see kids his age living life.

We understand more clearly the sacrifice that God made in giving us Jesus.

Giving involves receiving.  Truly, the act of giving is not complete without the someone to receive what is given: the gift.  But love motivates giving.  The theme of my prayer life this year has been asking God to reveal to me His love for me.  It seems it is easy to tell other people that Jesus loves them and especially easy to teach that to my children, whom I love dearly.  Receiving God’s love just seemed out of my reach.   I have felt that if I could really understand and receive the love that Paul references in Romans then I would be able to love others with God’s love.   I desired to be God’s vessel: to allow God to fill my cup to overflowing and then pour out his love on other people.  Even unlovely people.

‘The body of Christ’.  It is often referenced in vague ethereal terms in Scripture.  The church is the body of Christ.  But what does that mean?  Throughout this struggle we have seen the body of Christ working. The people of Christ’s body have done some serious giving, motivated by their love for Jesus. We have been recipients of this love.  The people that make up the body of Christ are moved by the Holy Spirit in their various giftings to show us Christ’s love.

There are many parts of the body.  The hands and feet: ‘laundry fairies’ as I call them, taking care of kids, feeding the dog, vacuuming, providing meals, setting tables, making smoothies, bringing coffee and chocolate.  The mind: researching and providing possible avenues of care, helping us advocate for Elijah.  The heart: those who encourage through word, prayer, laughter, walks, visits from afar and sharing in our tears. Some dear friends take the time to contact us in one way or another every day. I am amazed at the complete strangers who have taken the time to write and let us know they hear and care and are praying.  Then there’s the daytimer: scheduling and coordinating the meals and the kids because we can’t see beyond the next minute.  The wallet: those who have offered or given financially.  The intercessors: praying without ceasing.

Through the obedience of the saints, we have experienced the love of Christ. This givingwould not be complete without our receiving. Admittedly, it has been a stretch to be the long term recipients of so much giving. We receive because we have to. We could not walk this path alone. In receiving, we have become more aware of Christ’s love and how it manifests itself. What I know is that this body functions because it’s members were obedient to their call.  The mind thought, the heart beat, the hands and feet worked, the daytimer scheduled, the wallet emptied, the intercessor prayed.

In the same way, Jesus’ sacrificial gift is not complete without our receiving. The gift has been given: we need only receive.

Many have written of our strength and courage through this trial. These are gifts that we have received from the hand of God. The gift of forgiveness (John 3:16). The gift of strength (greater is He who is in me than He who is living in the world). The gift of faith (Gal 2:20), the gift of encouragement from others, the gift of grace and mercy (Heb 4:16).

Jesus filled the gap. As His followers we are called to fill the gap/bear the burdens for others. This life is not our own (Gal 2:20). We are called to live on a higher level. Not focusing only on our own troubles but bearing one another’s burdens. That is what this body of Christ has done for us. All of you have been our gap fillers and our burden bearers.

“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man.  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith, that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.  Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.  Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.  Amen.”

~ Brenna, for all

p.s.  A perfect example of the body working (and a confirmation of my “word”) came this morning in a text from a faithful intercessor and burden bearer.  This friend often just texts “I’m believing for you today”.  This morning, she wrote a huge timely text of encouragement from her study of the book of Numbers, and the Israelites in the desert, and the waiting –but that God was guiding while they waited.  She also included:

“And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the LORD which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel.”

–and the God of the Lowry’s.

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11 thoughts on “6/1/15 (Elijah) 

  1. Continue to hold to your strong faith and hope in the Lord. He is the healer. He can perform miracles. I know first hand his strength and power in healing when others doubt…stay strong. Love,
    Lynne Skaggs McAuliffe

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I went to school with Autumn’s mother and work with her grandparents back here in Pennsylvania. I have been following and praying for everyone since I heard the news. Today the Lord seems to be urging me to write. Oh heavenly Father, lift up these children of God into your healing hands. I pray to you Father that you bring comfort and Peace to Elijah’s family. Guide the doctors and the nurses who care for him. Be his strength. I ask this in your most Holy name. Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Brenna, I just wanted you to know that I pray for all of you often, even as I drove to and from our daughter’s wedding this past weekend. Thinking of what you are going through gave me some much-needed perspective during my own “trials” when the weather didn’t cooperate, our guests got soaked and we had to move the outdoor wedding inside. I was reminded that these are all really very small things.

    I also want you to know that these rich insights into God’s heart and character are another gift He is giving you–they are the treasures of darkness, the secret things that can only be found in the desert. We are listening to you, eager to hear what He reveals to you next as you press into Him. So keep pressing and gathering those treasures!

    I have hope that Elijah will make a full recovery and am praying to that end.

    Love, prayers and hugs to you today!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. In the clutter and chaos of our individual lives, our actions, our thoughts, our prayers, our love for one another, the sheer belief in Christ the Redeemer leaves me overwhelmed and at times, quite frankly, undernourished and exhausted.

    Only when I lean into the arms of Abba Father, I’m I completely nourished and satisfied. All of this inspite of the many trials and tribulations I have seen in my life and I have seen many. The tears I have shed, the constant pain I have felt is but a droplet and a flicker of light compared to the Holy Sacrifice.

    I (we) can scarcely imagine what you and your family must be going through. I’ve tried to wrap my earthly brain around the blood and the pain that was left at the cross, but as hard as I’ve tried, I can only imagine. How can we possibly wrap our earthly brains around this horrific tragedy?

    Please let it be known above all else, we love you and the pain is felt, even in these aged and weary bones of mine. All the answers to our constant barrage of questions will one day be answered in full, and there is no doubt, we’ll all stand in awe before the Master one and all!

    We will finally be able to rest in His arms and for me, this is all I need to make it past the next minute, the next hour, the next day. We will continue to lift both Elijah and Autumn up in prayer. Be assured the day will come when they both come together again, holding hands, kneeling in prayer and simply holding each other in silent gratitude.

    Through the pain and misery, these precious children will overcome fore there is no doubt our God surely is not done with them yet.

    I place the healing hand of God upon your precious child and with this, he is healed. Of course I could quote numerous passages in Gods Word but I simply offer this instead: Elijah is healed and tomorrow the journey of a lifetime begins. At the appointed time (very soon) Gods full plan for both Elijah and Autumn will be revealed, and the powerful, poinient story they will tell will be shared by millions and more.

    Tom and Karen Stiveson
    For all our brothers and sisters in Christ!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Continued prayers that Jesus will calm the storms in Elijah that smooth waters will prevail. That Holy Spirit reminds him of who he is and will be. We continue our steadfast prayer for you ALL

    Liked by 1 person

  6. God can do small miracles and he can do BIG ones we just have to open our surprised eyes. God will do so very many more miracles that we will not be able to count them. He will give us the power to open our eyes.
    Love, Abby

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Love you so much dearest Brenna! What a gift you are to me and so many people with your beautiful post today. Praying constantly for you, Elijah and Randy. Our hearts are broken for you…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hello to the families of Elijah and Autumn. My friend, Tammy Klimek, reached out to me to pray for Elijah and Autumn the day of the accident. Since then I have been praying, reading updates, and thanking God as I see Him work in this difficult time. As I read this update about you experiencing receiving the love of God, I thought of how much I have received from you all reading each update! The courage that God has given to you to face this is amazing. Even when it may feel like the walls are pressing in in every side.

    There have been so many things that I have read that have been in line with what God has me studying. One morning God led me to Joshua 3 and 4, and the very next day Joshua 4 was shared in one of the updates. I had a friend reference “ebb and flow”, and the next day one of the updates referenced “ebb and flow”. It’s such an uncommonly used phrase for me, and there were 4 more instances within 5 days that ebb and flow were referenced. In blogs I read, in a sermon spoke by Russell Wilson at City Church in Seattle, even in seeing two murals on the Seattle waterfront that I walked by 3 times with my boys before I saw them. When we receive His love in such an overwhelming way, it pours out to others. It flows! To see the depths of what God is showing you and watching His faithfulness guide you through this time, is being His love being poured out and giving back to so many lives as you share! It is a wonderful example of the body of Christ functioning as it should. Giving love, receiving love, and giving it back. I will continue to have Elijah and Autumn in my prayers, and I thank you for how much your updates have touched my heart and challenged me to trust Him more. May all we do glorify Him, Julie

    Liked by 1 person

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