Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  It's hard to believe it is almost 2010 (3 more hours to go)!  Thank you so much for all the concentrated prayers during this Christmas season.  I have really sensed God's presence, and while it has been a hard time, "the joy of the Lord" has been my strength.

I just got back from seeing Glenn.  The past 2-3 days the pain has diminished considerably so the doctor has started lowering his dosage of Methadone.  As the pain is going away on it's own, there will be no need to do a nerve block now, which on one hand is a relief.  For about 3 weeks now, Glenn has been sleeping most of his days and nights away, so as you can imagine he has gotten quite weak.  The last 2 mornings he has had raspy breathing, which is beginning to concern us.  The doctor says his lungs sound clear so far, but we are keeping our eyes on it.  We are hoping that once the Methadone dosage is lowered, Glenn's mind will clear up and he will be able to be awake more and able to think clearly.  Besides that, there really isn't much else to report.

All the best to each of your in the coming year.

Till next time....



Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Another Christmas!!!!  It’s so hard to believe another year is almost over.  Wow!!  May this be a blessed season for all of you.  Thanks so much for standing with us in prayer and for all your encouragement.

Glenn is still in the hospital.  Not much has changed.  He usually wakes up around 3:00 a.m. with a lot of pain and it takes until about 9:30 a.m. before the drugs kick in to make him comfortable enough to be able to sleep.  He then spends most of the day sleeping so that when I go to see him in the evening he is a bit more alert and able to visit for a bit.  As it is the Christmas and there are a number of days off around this time of hear, not much else is happening.  The doctor told me they will probably do the nerve block next week.  He is still hopeful that the radiation will work, but I’m beginning to wonder as it’s been two weeks now since he had his radiation treatments.  Besides that, there really is not much else to report.  We are weary and at times feel overwhelmed, but we continue to persevere knowing that God is in control and our lives are in his hand.

God bless you and Happy New Year!



Sunday, December 20, 2009


Hi!  Just wanted to write a quick note to let you know that Glenn is back in the hospital.  Last weekend was a nightmare as far as the pain was concerned, so on Tuesday, the doctor decided the best thing would be to change Glenn's medication from the pain pump to Methadone and oral drug.  He told us, though, that it is very difficult  to figure out the proper dosage with Methadone, so he wanted Glenn in the hospital for the switch over.  Thursday night was the worst night of pain for Glenn yet, so when the doctor came to see him in the morning he told Glenn he was going to increase the dosage, but he would be very sleepy.  By that time, Glenn was about ready for anything and he agreed so for the last 2 days Glenn has been sleeping most of the time.  Yesterday Glenn woke up with a fever and his hemoglobin was down to 69, so blood cultures and other tests were done to see if he has an infection of some kind and he was given another 2 bags of blood last night.  When I saw him last night he had better color and was more alert so the extra blood seems to have helped him a bit. 

Please pray for peace for Glenn.  He is quite discouraged by this latest turn of events.  I will try to keep you informed.


Saturday, December 12, 2009

My song for 2009 Christmas season

Each year, I seem to get some silly Christmas song in my mind.  Last year, it was “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.”  This year, it’s this little classic. So, I thought I would share it with you. Enjoy.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Home from the hospital

Well, I am home.  I still feel pretty drugged up and everything I wrote in the previous blog still holds.  I am exhausted and simply worn out.  Pray that God will restore my strength at this time.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

How does one keep one’s faith when heavily drugged?

Richard Wurmbrand, the founder of The Voice of the Martyrs, readily admitted that of all of the tortures that he faced, it was the use of drugs by his persecutors that he found the most difficult. When I first read that over 12 years ago, I could not grasp the truth of what he was referring to, especially not when I had read of the horrific physical tortures that he had endured.

Now, as I struggle to write each line of this blog, I understand Pastor Wurmbrand’s words far better.

Right now I am in hospital undergoing radiation treatment. My doctor is hoping to shrink cancerous lymph nodes in my lower back and pelvic region that have increased in size and are pressing against nerves, causing a great deal of pain.

To counter this pain, I am taking painkillers that are increasingly hindering my ability to think clearly. Emotionally, these drugs are making me fragile and insecure, and my inability to remember details is only reinforcing this.

Yes, I can understand why Pastor Wurmbrand felt that drugs were the greatest challenge that he had faced in his years of torture. You find yourself in a position when you wonder how successful you are really being in controlling your mind, mouth, or emotions. You simply don’t know. You fear what you might have said but which you cannot remember. You cannot remember Bible verses that were once precious to you. You cannot remember things that you know you should know (right now, for example, I cannot remember how many years Pastor Wurmbrand was in prison. I should know this and I could look it up, but it is good that you know what I am referring to. I simply do not remember if it was 12 or 14 years).

When drugged up, you find it harder to retain one’s confession of faith and truth when you cannot control your tongue. Of course, I am sure of God’s faithfulness at times like this. But drugs make you wonder what is real was real and what was drug-induced. Perhaps your past faithfulness was just a ruse. Guilt becomes a constant companion.

To that end, I ask you to pray for me during this time. More importantly, pray for Christian prisoners who undergo such drug-induced torture daily. For me, there is hope that it will end soon. For many of them, there is no such hope.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Cry for help on a Sunday morning

Woke up at 5:30 this morning when my roommate decided that he needed to have his light on. Thankfully, he obliged when I asked him to turn it off. What amazes me are people who think that it would have have been a good idea to begin with. I could not tell what he as doing that required illumination.

But that kind of ruined my night, especially as the pain in my legs and thighs began to increase in earnest. As I write this, I am trying to supplement my regular pain killers with boluses every 30 minutes. Not helping much. “God help me!” is the only cry that I can utter right now. It is probably all I need to pray. It is sound and honours Him.

I am struck by the people who are trying to help my roommate. It think it is his wife or girlfriend right now. She is literally bombarding him with questions. Not surprisingly, he is not answering most of them. I am sure that deep inside, he is simply saying, “Please be quiet and just be here for me. I will ask if I need something.” I am sure she is well-meaning though. But care-giving is a gift, not a natural talent for fallen human beings, it seems to me. Perhaps it can be training but the best are those who just seem to know how to do it, I’ve met a few people like this and I have to be careful not to measure everyone else against them. That would be grossly unfair, wouldn’t it?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

In the hospital

I ended up in the hospital yesterday after I woke up and found that the drugs that I had been given for the pain were far too strong.  Denita took my in for my first radiation treatment but then they checked me into the oncology ward to get my drug regiment until control.  I was also undergoing a lot of pain from the radiation treatment.  Frankly, I don’t remember a lot about yesterday.

So, here I sit.  The pain in my legs is under control, but my head is sill a bit fuzzy. 

On Monday, I pick up with the radiation treatment that they hope will shrink the lymph nodes that are pressing up against my nerves.  I really hope that this gets to the bottom of the problem.  I really do.

Thank you for your prayers.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Prodded, poked, and then zapped

As we are seeking to get to the bottom of what is causing me such pain in my bottom, it would appear that my lymph nodes in my abdomen are pressing in on some nerves causing me the pain that I have been experiencing over the past three weeks. So, starting tomorrow morning at 8:30, I will be beginning a round of radiation treatment that will last for five days. The doctors hope that this will shrink the nodes and ease up the pressure on my nerves, which would sure be nice. I must confess that this constant pain, though it waxes and wanes and is by far the most severe in the mornings, has really been hard on me emotionally.

It is amazing, of course, that we have been able to get these appointments so quickly. God’s hand is certainly at work in this.

But I am growing tired of going from one crisis to another with few breaks in between. I am saddened by changes in my life that I know have needed to be made but which leave me feeling like I will never be able to reach my potential. I watch how all of this wears my wife down and it hurts me to see her so tired and so burdened. Yes, we agreed to be in this “for better or for worse” but I would have liked to have given her more of the “for better.” And every time I start feeling good again and hope rises anew that perhaps I might be able to live out a little more of my life with some degree of normality, then I am struck down again with another affliction.

Yes, I am whining a bit. But is that so wrong from time to time?

It does mean that we need your prayers in the days to come. Please pray that this radiation treatment really will address this pain.