Navigating Life's Challenges with Faith.

As I write this, it’s early Saturday morning. As usual, I woke up shortly after 5 AM. If it’s after 5, I’ll get up. If it’s before 5, I try to go back to sleep. Now, I’ve had my breakfast of an avocado and the last of a brick of cream cheese and am on my second and last cup of coffee. I’ve read my Bible and prayed. But, it’s still too early to wake up my wife for her morning pills.

Early Morning Reflections: Setting the Scene

I’ve been feeling a little guilty that I haven’t been keeping up with my blog So this is the perfect time to write an entry.

Why did I give you so much detail about my day? Well, it provides a backdrop for what I need to share. At first blush, my morning sounds like any other aging man that needs less sleep as he gets older (of course, we nap in the middle of the day, but that doesn’t count, right?). But, I’m not that old. I’m only 55. I’ve been officially disabled for a little over 9 years now.

Navigating Life’s Challenges: The Journey Begins

For much of those 9 years, my wife and I held a fairly active and vibrant life. I was counseling in an office with her by my side. We helped in ministry at multiple churches. But, in that time she has had 13 surgeries. Of those surgeries, two were botched which left her with a brain infection that had her hospitalized most of 6 months. As they tried to send her home, we had an ambulance in our driveway 7 times sending her back. Finally, the last time she went in, I just emotionally couldn’t call an ambulance. Late at night, I dressed her, put her in her power chair, then the van, then walked with her chair into the emergency room before they flew her to Las Vegas for a few months. After she finally came home, I was giving her IV antibiotics 3 times a day for 8 weeks.

Facing Adversity: A Test of Faith

At first, she was confused, and often scared. She had just lost 6 months of her life and couldn’t remember the bulk of the previous decade. She still gets confused sometimes and has bouts of jumbled memory. My daughter and I will have to watch her for the rest of her life for neurological symptoms that show we have to rush her to the emergency room again.

Embracing Vulnerability: Sharing Our Story

I’ve never shared that whole bit publicly. I’ve shared hints to help tell a broader story about God’s goodness. But now, almost a full two years after she came home, I’m finally emotionally able to put the whole story out there.

Finding Purpose Amidst Struggle: Answering God’s Call

Yes, my daughter and I are constantly watching, trying to do so without my wife feeling watched. But we’ve also gone on living. I’ve written two books and still counsel, just online now. My daughter has pursued a career as a first responder and will be moving into the frontlines at a hospital by the time you read this. We both know that we can’t just stop, just because my wife’s health could turn on a dime at any minute.

Trusting in God’s Plan: Lessons Learned

But, we have our own drama. I’m dealing with declining health too. Although the “experts” can’t agree on what’s wrong with my brain, we’re treating it as if it is Stiff Person Syndrome. But without being sure what’s really going on, some symptoms continue to worsen. This week it’s been sleepiness. I’ve literally passed out from 30 minutes to 4 hours every day this week. It’s pretty hard to be terribly effective that way.

A God of Love and Care: Finding Comfort in Uncertainty

But why am I going on about my problems? Well, it’s pretty important to me to follow God’s calling. And He hasn’t let me off the hook yet. I still feel that I must minister at every chance He gives me. That’s what this blog and the emails that go out from it as well as my books are all about. They’re about ministry. And I pray dear reader that they minister to you!

Prayer and Surrender: Aligning with God’s Will

So, what I want to share with you is this. First, as some of you know, life is incredibly unpredictable. Our stable, productive lives and incomes and activities are all balanced on a knife’s edge. It may seem like things are solid and predictable. But in truth, anything can happen at any time. And there’s nothing we can do to predict, prevent, or prepare.

Embracing Faith: A Path to Fulfillment

Boy, that sounds pretty gloomy doesn’t it. I almost hate to say it. But without that truth, the rest of the truth bears no weight. We also have a God that loves us! We have a God that wants to be in a forever relationship with us. We have a God, that even if it’s not the way we want, is caring for us. I’ve had to realize that. I’ve had to come to understand what my mom said to me from her death bed as I was contemplating a malpractice suit against her oncologists. She said, “God knew. He knew.” What she meant, but wasn’t up to spelling out in her weakened state, was that God was still in control the whole time. We’re told that no one can pluck us from his hand (John 10:27-29).

So often, we are dissatisfied or think He isn’t answering our prayers or maybe even isn’t listening. But, I’ve known for many years and am now constantly reminded that the best way to guarantee our prayers are answered is really quite simple. Instead of asking Him to do our will, get in line with His. Things look completely different when we do that and life is so much more fulfilling. I hope you can join me there. 


If this all sounds good, but life is just too much and you need a little help, please check out my counseling page.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *