Thursday, December 3, 2009

You Never Let Go

(Change from my traditional blog posting… then again this is life and then some.)

Well, we have come to “the night before.” This is a time I have thought about, prayed about, prayed against and researched for well over a year.
I could not sleep tonight... All day yesterday, I have known that one of my closest friends is coming upon the biggest battle of his life this day. Today Jim will undergo a 12 hour surgery to try and rid his body of this deadly disease. And through it all, he has remained steadfast to his faith and commitment to fight the fight. At 7AM today, he will begin his next step in his journey that he has been leading. Through it all, he has remained a rock; a man on a mission guided by his trust and faith in God. Me on the other hand, I’ve been a nervous wreck. He called me last night at 11:30pm from his prep room to let me know that he was good. It was amazing to me, that through all that he will face today, he called me to see if I was up and not to worry. We said a short prayer together, laughed a bit and I shared with him that so many of you were out there sending your prayers out for him. Of course, he was thankful and gracious as always.

I have known Jim Elliott for close to 10 years. We have worked together in the past at a previous company and recently joined forces again at our current company. He is truly an inspiration to me and so many.

This Saturday is October 31st , a year ago my physician called me and told me I have appendecial adeno carcinoma and it at a stage 4.
A little more than a year ago, I received a call from Jim giving me the news of his acknowledgment of his stage 4 cancer. This was overwhelming for me and I can only imagine how he and his family were taking it all in. Obviously the worst came to mind. I vowed to call him everyday to keep his spirits in check and quite frankly, to keep my own spirits in check. Jim did a much better job of checking on me to see if I was okay. Shortly after, he began a CaringBridge blog site to keep those of us up to speed on his progress and his journey.

So tonight, not being able to sleep, I decided to go through all of Jim’s blog posts from day one, Oct. 2008 to December 2nd, 2009. As I read through each of his posts throughout the past year, a common theme became very clear to me – Courage, Faith and Love. Much of Jim’s writings seldom focused on the negative or sadness that such a disease brings. Rather, much of what he shares has to do with the strength he gains from all of the support and prayers of those around him. Also much of what he shares is the gain in closeness to God. Throughout many of the posts, he writes of how ‘thankful’ he is for the journey. It is truly amazing to me that in a time of despair and uncertainty, his outlook on life and the journey are filled with courage, faith and love.

So after reading all of his posts tonight, I pulled out a few of his comments and quotes and thought I would share a years worth of reflection from Jim Elliott.
(This is a song he referenced in his blog post Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Although many of us have said a few prayers for his support and healing, I believe his prayers and strength have touched each on of us even more. I know I am a stronger person because of the example and courage he has exemplified in his current journey.

So today, I ask that you take some time to pray or pause for the healing and successful surgery that he is undergoing today. I hope to hear from his family later tonight with word on his big day. As he so often says… “your prayers are what keep me going… God is good.”

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