Life And Death Decisions

A Day I Will Never Forget

“You should let your wife pass away, she will never have a good quality of life and neither will you.” Talk about life and death decisions! Have you ever heard those words from your doctor? I’ll never forget the day two of my wife’s doctors said those words to me. It brings back a memory of “where were you when John Kennedy was shot?” Some of you may be too young to remember that. But that moment remains as clear in my mind as any memory could possibly be.

My wife became seriously ill on August 4th, 2014 and was in various hospitals and medical facilities. At times it seems as though anything that could go wrong did go wrong. But we had faith in the Lord and believed that, with His guidance, she would survive. I can’t tell you why but I just always had this feeling in my heart that she would recover. To me, it is just the first in a long list of God’s Miracles, what I call God Things. It just didn’t seem like it was the right time for her to be with the Lord.

The day after she was admitted to the hospital I gathered our three adult children and went into the visitors waiting room and closed the door. I was concerned that the doctors were already making comments like:

  • “We will make her comfortable”
  • “Your wife is seriously ill and less than 35% of the people with this problem live.”
  • “We’re doing all we can, but…..”

In that visitor’s room, we made a pact to make sure anyone who needed to know, knew that we were not interested in “making her comfortable”, we expected that they treat her aggressively and take the necessary actions to make her well. Then, on the third day, things got worse. She developed acute respiratory distress syndrome. Another malady with only about a 60% survival rate for an otherwise healthy person. She had to be placed in a medically induced coma for 30 days and put on a rotating bed.

As terrible as this situation was (and getting worse by the day) there were always God Things along the way. I will tell you about all of them in the posts to come, but, for now, let’s get back to the one that inspired this site.

A Life and Death Decision

During her illness, one doctor, in particular, pressured us to complete a DNR form. Neither of us has done this and probably never will. When the doctor asked me why not, I explained that I thought it is a license to kill. If something happened to my wife or me we will make that decision with God, not put it in the hands of someone who may be pressed for time, have another patient in need or be late for dinner. I know, it’s a harsh way of looking at things but If I had signed one my wife would be dead today. Please, let me be clear that there are times when these decisions need to be made and through prayer and talking with family and your doctors, you will know when that time is right. 

Now, go ahead a few more months and my wife is still in critical condition but improving. This particular doctor came into my wife’s room with another doctor and their conversation seemed to me as though we were talking about someone else. I told both to stop and let’s find a private area to talk. This was not the type of conversation my wife should have been listening to. Basically, they were saying that she is still critical may not recover fully. Once in a private area, I asked what they suggested. The advice I was given was to stop my wife’s medications, take her off the ventilator and just make her comfortable (there’s that comfortable word again) with drugs. She would pass away in about 3 days. Imagine that, only 3 more days and I would have a better quality of life. 

My reaction was to throw both doctors out of the room and tell them to never approach me or my children about that topic again. Also, I expected them to do everything in their power to save her and if a different decision needed to be made we would make that with the Lord, not them.

After they left I stayed in the room for a few minutes, cried, prayed, cried and prayed again. Then went back to my wife’s room.

Let The Lord In

Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.

Having been in that hospital environment for 20 months there were numerous times that I witnessed doctors telling a family their loved ones would not survive or had very little chance. That they would “make them comfortable”. I know that is the case in the vast majority of those conversations. I know that those decisions are necessary and pray for anyone in that position. My message here is that this is a time to challenge your medical professional about all of the options. I have great respect for the doctors and nurses who give so much of their lives to save our loved ones. But, they are people just like you and me. They can make mistakes and they can rise to the challenge when you challenge them. If they don’t, fire them.

It is also the time to talk to the Lord to see if He has a message for you. Believe me, when I say, my wife had a lot of adversity, and it was God’s presence that gave us the strength to get up every morning and face another day. It was God’s guidance that gave the doctors and nurses the wisdom and knowledge to see it through. And it’s God’s strength that is with us every day.

On April 11th, 2016 my wife came home and I wouldn’t trade our “quality of life” for anything!

That’s her in the picture above, taking a walk at the reservoir in our area.

Have you ever been in this circumstance? How did you handle it? Did you feel God’s presence? Did you experience the same type of God Things that we did?

Please leave a comment and share your experience with God’s Miracles.

God’s Miracles are your God Things

God Things – What Are They And Where Do You Find Them?

What are God Things?

God Things are God’s Miracles. They are tiny moments or events that convey a sense to the person that witness’s them that God is always present, and looking out for them.

They can be as simple as the smile of a child. They can be as huge as a friend or relative taking a step…after being told walking again might not be in the cards.

God Things occur every day, exist in the eye of the beholder and are different for every individual. They are non-denominational, nonjudgmental, and there for all with the faith to see.

They can lift us up when we are down, and inspire hope when all hope seems lost. The relative walking again? That was the what that inspired me to create this journal. My wife walking again, against all odds, woke me up to all the God Things around me. It inspired me to find ways to help others do the same.

The Hope

First of all, there’s enough negativity in the world today. It’s easy to be blinded to the work that God does in our lives when people are divided and trying to prove their own point. Therefore, I created  I Believe In God Things as a place for people of all faiths to see and share God Things. Most of all, it’s a place for you to see what’s going on in the lives of others. Especially when you haven’t recognized one in a while.

You’re Invited

You are invited to comment on our blog posts and share your stories of God’s Miracles in your life.

Starting Over – It’s Never Too Late

Can You Have A New Start?

Of course! You can have a new start every day!  Starting over is what saves us from ourselves and Satan. When things go wrong there are many ways to look at it. I’m going to talk about just two.
  1. You can “own” it, learn from it, understand the ramifications, take corrective action, and move on.
  2. You can let it “own” you. Then you can dwell on it, let it ruin your day or week or life and be happy in the fact that you will never forget “it’ (if you can call that happy).

What is “it”?

“It” can be anything. Perhaps you said or did something you regret, acted in a way that was embarrassing, interrupted your exercising routine, ate more than you should and blew away your diet. Maybe you broke your relationship with your spouse, child or friend. Maybe you committed to pray every day then missed a day. I’m sure you get the idea.

So what do you?

First, you need to do your best to think clearly about what happened. Take the emotion out and think through your options and ramifications. Let’s start with an easy one:

You are an avid runner and have decided that you want to run a 1/2 marathon so you start the rigorous training that goes along with that desire. You’ve trained for 2 months and all of a sudden work begins taking more of your time so you don’t practice for a couple of days. Your convinced that you have lost the desire and the break in training will hamper your progress.

SO WHAT DO YOU DO? Start by thinking what caused you to want to run a 1/2 marathon in the first place. Is the short interruption a real reason to give up your dream or is it just a distraction? Most likely, you will decide that it was a distraction and starting over is easy. But you have to do is start training again right away.

Now, let’s go to a more difficult problem:

You and your spouse have an argument, one like you’ve never had before. It’s serious because it has been brewing for a long time. Something happened that bothered both of you but neither of you said anything, you just let it smolder. This was an argument that could break up your relationship!

SO WHAT DO YOU DO? Let’s start at the beginning because that’s where things started to go wrong.

  1. Whatever happened to start the hard feelings should have been addressed then. That mean’s recognizing the problem, owning it and talking about it. Ignoring a problem doesn’t make it go away, it just festers and gets bigger and bigger in your own mind. The more you think about it the angrier you can get and the bigger the problem becomes.  Ephesians 4 26:28 tells us “In your anger do not sin, Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold” So, the first opportunity for starting over that slipped by was when you went to bed and didn’t talk about what was bothering both of you.
  2. Since that did not happen in this case you now have to address the anger in a different but similar manner. Begin by understanding what happens if you don’t resolve this problem. Again, it won’t go away just because you ignore it. Even worse, the situation looms even larger than before now that you have both put a stake in the sand and have defined your own side. Not a common side but diverse sides. Someone needs to be right and someone needs to be wrong and both of you think the other person has to be wrong. At least that’s what Satan would like you to believe. That takes us back to #1. What are the ramifications of not owning this and resolving it? Do you want to lose your marriage? Do you want to break up your family? Are you so self-centered that you can’t  move to the middle with the person you love? Will you be happy without your spouse? Yes, it’s a lot to think about but sometimes we need to know what the end will be before we can figure out the beginning. Once you know where you want to end up it’s easier to understand your path and take the steps toward starting over.
  3. Starting over starts here. Take corrective action. Now is the time to talk about your concerns and feelings and find your middle ground if there is a middle ground to be had. Most importantly, don’t go to bed before you resolve your problem and can settle your differences. Or, agree on how to start your reconciliation plan at a minimum.
I didn’t talk much about option #2, “You Can Let It Own You”. This option requires a much shorter explanation.
  1. Ignore the problem
  2. Don’t talk to anyone about it
  3. Let your goals slip by
  4. Live with anger and remorse
  5. Blame others
  6. Focus on the worst case scenario because that’s the most likely result
Lamentations 3:22-23 tells us “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness”  God’s Miracles are our “God Things”  

Get Healthy With Jesus

A New Year’s Resolution Gone Awry

Get healthy with Jesus and expect change! It’s February and it’s the second month of your New Years Resolution. How is that working out for you?  Did you lose weight? Start exercising? Stop a bad habit? Start a new good habit? Whatever your New Years Resolution is, I hope it’s working out well for you. If not, perhaps you should try something else.

Here is what Jesus said in Matthew 11 28:30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Let’s think about that for a moment. Why do we make new year’s resolutions? Because we have something we want to change, right? Sometimes the resolution is to make something that is already good, better. But is that normal? Probably not! We usually make a resolution to change something we don’t like in our life or have a difficult time controlling. As I write this I can’t help but think how unsuccessful I have been with new years resolutions. Throughout the years I have made some that I was committed to and they worked out. But, more often than not, I lacked the commitment or self-control to see things through.

We’re told in Proverbs 25:28 “A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.”

When I’m feeling down or not able to accomplish things I feel broken and out of control. That’s because when I’m feeling down, that’s the time when I feel like I can have control. But that’s not true! The Lord is always in control and I know He will lift me up when I’m acknowledging Him, but when I think ” I’ve got this”, He shows me that I don’t.

Food For Thought

It’s never too late to have a new beginning. Maybe it’s time to start a new, New Year’s Resolution that has Jesus in it. Miracles happen all the time when God is involved and yet it’s so easy to forget that. Pray today to see how you can have a life-changing resolution. See if you can get healthy with Jesus.

God’s Miracles Are Our “God Things

A Miracle In Las Vegas

A miracle in Las Vegas when a woman goes home from the hospital 4 months after being shot in the head. This is an incredible story of God’s Miracles. When humans think there is no hope, He has his own way of getting the message to us to stay the course.

See the video courtesy of NBC News

Luke 1:37 “For nothing will be impossible with God.”

Random Acts Of Kindness Can Make Someone’s Day Brighter

I may be compensated through the links in the post below, but the opinions are my own.

Brighten Someone’s Day

The world is in such turmoil today that we sometimes forget there are good and kind people out there who do random acts of kindness!

A friend recently put a post on her Facebook page about a visit to the pharmacy. Her daughter has Down Syndrome and loves cats but can’t have one because her mother is allergic to them. On this day she had a shirt with a kitty on it.  While she and her daughter were waiting for a prescription a woman in line started a conversation about the shirt. When she found out her daughter can’t have animals she walked away and came back with two little stuffed kitties and bought them for her daughter.  This random act of kindness made her daughter’s day and hers too. It makes me hopeful for all of us.

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32

Have you ever had the opportunity to create a random act of kindness and let the opportunity slip by? I have! Afterwards I think to my self “how difficult would it have been to just ……”. Not difficult at all is the answer. But we are so caught up in our own thoughts that we sometimes just don’t realize what’s happening RIGHT NOW. If your like me you find that’s easier said than done yet it’s such an important rule to live by.

Matthew 6:34 tells us “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

 

Pin It on Pinterest

google-site-verification=K-ake1aUWy70WcCqOaMx6ey3PIBFnAfnPlnDhGb18Mw