6/13/15 (Elijah)

Hello, everyone!

First off, listed below are some some specific points for prayer. Following that is a more in-depth –and really beautiful– update from Brenna.

|| Haley

specific points for prayer:  

  • Pray that Elijah would be able to sleep restfully. The storms are not as intense, nor as frequent, but the smaller versions of the storms continue to interrupt his sleep patterns & he has been unable to get adequate sleep since the narcotic medications have decreased.
  • Pray that he will be able to respond to commands. He is currently interactive with his eyes, but is yet to respond to commands.
  • Elijah has been able to go all day wearing the passy muir valve, which is a big step toward being able to place a cap directly on his trach opening (which means breathing independently through his mouth, instead of throat), then ultimately closing off the trach & allowing him to breath normally.
  • Received a visit from Cinnamon, Hunter, Forrest, and Canyon on June 12th. We visited for over an hour. Cinnamon & Scott provided a gift for Elijah of a Founder’s Bible that illustrates the many biblical connections to the founding of the United States. I know he will enjoy this.

New words from Brenna:

On Wednesday afternoon I sat in the window seat for a few brief moments.  Most of the time while Randy and I are at the hospital, we are busy.  Holding Elijah’s hand, wiping the sweat that drips down during the storms, ranging his arms and fingers (helping them to move), talking to him, getting ice packs, applying essential oils, picking out new background music . . . you get the idea.

Looking at the view of the mountains near Estes, the Lord impressed upon me perspective. We have hiked those mountains often enough that I could stare into the distance and picture myself there. It was sunny in Loveland but looked stormy way off. I could feel the weather changes, and what the air would feel like if I were standing there. In my mind, I was enjoying the cool air and the refreshment that God’s creation provides. My perspective is limited. But God is both where I am, and up in those beautiful mountains. He is omnipresent: everywhere at the same time. And he is outside of time.

Elijah coughs. . . I am forced back to the reality of our perspective. Elijah’s perspective is from a hospital bed. With three walls of the hospital room and a few “novel” people who catch his gaze: his perspective is limited. I snap a quick picture of the mountains outside so that Elijah can experience what he doesn’t have the ability to see for himself –yet. He studies the picture.

Our perspective of this life is limited, like Elijah’s. God has the ability to see what we do not see for ourselves –yet. His perspective is eternal. Thankfully, He snaps a picture for us in His Word. The ultimate picture is Heaven but there are many promises He provides until then. Promises that He will be with us, that He cares for us, that He gives us victory and will help us along our journey.  We are able to see His perspective when we study those promises in His Word like Elijah studies the picture.

Randy was reading Pilgrims Progress again to Elijah.  Fellow travelers, Christian & Hopeful have been captured by the giant Despair & are kept in his dungeon (within Doubting Castle).  Christian re-discovers the Promises contained in The Word (in this allegory, the promises are a key that Christian has with him the entire time in the dungeon, but had forgotten about while he & Hopeful  are held captive by the giant Despair). Upon using the key (God’s promises), Christian and Hopeful are able to escape from Despair.  During the escape, as Christian and Hopeful are being chased by the giant Despair, Christian tells Hopeful to flee while he diverts the giant. Hopeful refuses to leave without Christian. The allegory in the story is that we cannot travel far from despair without hope. Our hope is in the One who has the eternal perspective. We experience the difference that hope provides when we speak with unbelievers about this tragedy. Their ‘thoughts are with us,’ they say. Their words bring no hope. Truly, it is the believers that walk this journey with us that sometimes have to bring the picture to us when we lose perspective. We are thankful for our fellow travelers to the Celestial City (and we know many named Hopeful).

Proper perspective, I believe, leads us to contentment, rest, and gratitude.

Contentment and Rest: just as picturing myself wandering in the mountains provides a vision of rest, realizing we are wandering this earth in Jesus gives us the same. We don’t know the future, but we know who holds the future and He has the perspective of a Master artist creating a beautiful work in us and through us. He created Elijah from nothing and handed him to us 19 years ago. He is recreating Elijah.

Gratitude. We are grateful for Elijah’s eye movement and tracking and his small hand movements. He is being weaned off of the narcotics (going for more than 22 hours) and has been moved to a smaller trach, breathing the room air. The autonomic neural storms are much less intense & less frequent!

It is hard to report to people who are not following our story that these are great things. They do not have our perspective, and gaze with an awkward silence at our report of his progress. But even the doctors are amazed at the complexity of an eye movement: the layers of neuronal connections and cognition required to move our eye. Are we ever grateful that thousands of times a day our eyes can move at our will and volition? Imagine what life would be like if you could only open your eyes and not have the ability to blink and move them. A matter of perspective.

The Lord impresses upon me that in this life, we choose our perspective minute by minute. We can either view our situations from His divine eternal perspective or from our finite limited one. Once again our Jesus goggles make all the difference.

~Brenna for all


13 thoughts on “6/13/15 (Elijah)

  1. God is keeping His promises and letting His light shine through all of us. God is using this to spread the gospel. Already we see him at work. We just have to let him use us. Love, Abby

    Liked by 1 person

  2. His eyes… moving… wow.

    Yahweh, beautiful is your name, Glory and Honor belongs to Him; for of Him and through Him, and to Him are all things. Words cannot express, human intellect cannot explain, nor the wisest among men can give an answer to the power from the One who gave us life, who breaths life into us. Yahweh, the breath of God, the Love of God, that comforts us by His Spirit. Awestruck…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks, Brenna, for these words today. I have been following your story and praying with you even though I’ve never met your family. God is using your story to touch many in their daily lives as they read and apply his truths to their own lives. Thanks for taking the time to share during this difficult time.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Brenna, thank you for your beautiful and truthful meditations on our Jesus. May He continue to bless you all with His pure and holy presence. Your days are about details and hope. The blink of an eye, the hope for progress. I pray for you all and thank you for giving me the privilege of walking through this faith journey with you in Christ through prayer. God bless you.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Continuing to pray for Elijah. Thank you Brenna for the updates. Your persistent faith is an inspiration, as well as the “words” the Lord lays on your heart. A couple of times you have posted about a word (storm, perspective) that the Lord has given you. Interesting that in the posts, you’ve just mentioned a “word”, but there has always been a powerful message based on that word. This morning I made the connection that he is The Word (John 1:1 ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’). No wonder your posts have been such an inspiration – clearly it is God speaking through you. I am so sorry that you are in this battle, but so much appreciate how you are a willing instrument to inspire others about the hope that is in you (1 Peter 3:15).

    I’m sure you are familiar with Philippians 4:6-7, but in case you or others need to hear this again…’Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’

    May God continue to bless each of you and continue to heal Elijah to a fully recovered, better than before, young man of God.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. We talk about Elijah’s progress daily as well as pray for you all daily. We are totally rejoicing and praising God for every step of improvement! Please tell Elijah we love him and are cheering him on every step of the way, or should we say every eye movement, every breath, every finger movement! Loving and praying for you guys! The woods family.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Trusting in the Lord’s perspective is so comforting in these times when we do not know what the future holds. Thank you for your continual updates. Even though we do not know one another, we are brothers and sisters. I love that we have that bond. Prayers as always,
    Kathi Gadbury

    Liked by 1 person

  8. You all are still in my prayers daily. I’m reminded through your struggles and my own that…”God’s plan for us are far more beautiful than the dreams we have for ourselves”. I think that this is hard for a lot of people, myself included, to come to terms with. God created everything about us, including our minds and emotions which allow us to have dreams. We get to imagine what it will be like to fall in love and live happily ever after with that special someone. And when we give birth to our children we fall in love with those little creatures that were created to snuggle into our bodies perfectly. We develop hopes and make plans for our future. Even as believers we do these things. God created this in all of us. The beauty of these dreams is that they will be shattered. I know it doesn’t seem beautiful or feel beautiful, but it really is. During the times in our lives when those dreams are being ruined we can, if we choose, take a step back and remember that…”God’s plan for us are far more beautiful than the dreams we have for ourselves”. Giving us the opportunity to seek our Lord Jesus and His ultimate comfort and hope.
    I can’t even pretend to know what God has in store for any of us but I do know that he gave us a longing for love, peace, excitement, joy and all the other warm fuzzy feelings we experience. So my point is that in moments of great tragedy we are able to see that we were not suppose to find complete happiness here on earth. If we did experience complete happiness we would not have a deep longing for something “more”. And that something “more” is spending eternity in heaven with our amazing Savior where EVERYTHING will be PERFECT. We will be healed of our broken imperfect dreams, broken imperfect hearts and our broken imperfect bodies.

    I still find comfort in knowing that He just wants me to “Be still” and let him lead the way.

    Again, thanks for sharing your lives with us!!

    God’s love for Autumn and Elijah is mind numbingly greater than the love you could ever experience for them. I cry thinking about a love greater than the love I know you feel for them. What a blessing!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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