I did not intend for this to be my planned update. In fact, twice I have tried to update over the past month on a very important and different topic – but I couldn’t get it to a point I wanted. Instead I’m going to cover the power of relationships.
On January 5th, I came down with Covid. My wife ended up in the hospital for almost 8 days, and is still on Oxygen. At one point, she came dangerously close to having to go on a ventilator. I severely hurt my ankle a few days before Steph came home, and it is still swelling and hurting me. It’s been a struggle to keep up with the children and the basic household chores. January 2022 was a pretty rough month. However, I was reminded of the power of relationships through our struggles, and they reminded me of our struggles in the hospital.
I wanted to highlight a few key roles of relationships when you are waging war to bring about God’s promises.
The person who tells you who you are
On January 19th, I awoke at 430 in the morning. Steph had already been in the hospital for 2 days, and I was sleeping alone. Our bed always feels cold and lifeless when I have to sleep in it at night and Stephanie is not there.
I grabbed my phone and noticed a text from Stephanie, that she couldn’t breathe and they were taking her to the ICU. She ended it with, Please Pray. Over the next few days, I would text every prayer warrior or group I know, asking if they would pray for Steph. I started praying myself.
One of the people I texted is my upline Diamond in Amway, Jake. I told him what is going on and asked him if he would pray.
Jake responded with the following – “You bet! The Lord your God has kept you safe and given you provision before for your son! You stay strong and work to help Stephanie stay strong!”
At that moment, the fear and worry for my wife subsided. It sometimes takes a while for me to build myself up in the Lord. But at that moment – Jake’s words lit a fire under me. He was right – the Bible states that I, as the husband, am the head of the household. As such, there’s a special spiritual responsibility and authority that comes with that. I needed reminded both of the victory’s we had waged and my strength in battle before.
I hope you have someone in your life who will challenge you to stand up and fight for those you love.
The person who will offer their Presence
When Samuel was in the hospital, we had a couple, Dane and Karen, who would come to see us all the time. At the time of Samuel’s birth, we were hanging out with them every weekend anyway. Since we were pregnant or had a young baby, they would drive to our house to hang and we would make dinner. We appreciated them driving, and they appreciated my wife’s great cooking.
When we started struggling for Samuel’s health, they continued to come to see us in the hospital. But they did something different than most people. Most people wanted to offer words – words of advice, words of encouragement, words of their own struggles. The more our battle wore on, the less we wanted to hear anything from anyone. Month after month of medical tyranny, having your child go in for surgery after surgery, emergency room trip after emergency room trip – being exhausted past the point of tears – it leaves you in the “fog of war”. To those not dealing with it, they typically have no idea how much their words can add to that exhaustion. The exceptions being those who are helping to lead you out, like Jake above.
Dane and Karen, though, didn’t do that. I can tell you there were many times, both when we were home from the hospital and when we were in the hospital, that they would come bringing food. They would give us a gentle smile and ask how we were doing, and then they would spend time with us. Sometimes that time literally meant staring at the wall of the hospital room. Sometimes that literally meant sitting on our couch watching Youtube video after Youtube video. Sometimes it had to be the most awkward thing on the planet for them.
But for Stephanie and me – this was EXACTLY what we needed. We needed someone simply to be present.
The people who will pray for you, and will enlist other to pray
I think this is pretty self explanatory, but it shouldn’t be glossed over. I can tell you this – with both Samuel’s heart struggle 6 years ago and Stephanie’s struggle last month – I covet the prayers of the people praying. Revelation shows the prayers of us Christians as a bowl of incense before Him. I’m honored that so many people are willing to present their prayers before our God.
Something I went over in my book – “For This Child I Have Prayed” was the power of praying specifically. I took advantage of Social Media and messaging groups and I told people exactly what to ask God for in prayer. God says He loves unity, and that whatever we agree upon, He will bring to pass.
As an added bonus, I cannot thank enough the people who checked on me, brought food, reached out, and sent cards. Thank you
May the Lord bless you this week. If you need one of these people in your life, please reach out and find them, or reach out to me. If you know someone struggling in an area – be the person who offers your presence and your ears. Being a person who offers encouragement can be welcomed, but there’s a good possibility it might come across as painful.
For those who are wondering about Stephanie and her health with Covid. She came home on Thursday, January 27th. This past Thursday, February 3rd, she went into the ER to check for blood clots. She came home late that night. The outcome was that she was dealing with heavy anxiety. So to keep with point 3, please pray for my wife as she deals with anxiety. I love you all.
You can check out the next post here: Principle 6 – Dealing with the Negative Thoughts in Your Own Head
And if you want to check out prior posts in the series, check here: