Sunday, August 29, 2010

Working On Surrendering It All

Part 5 of "Our Story" will come sometime in the near future, but for tonight... this is what's on my heart.

So part of our new normal is getting used to spending our family time, the 3 of us in Adam's hospital room. There is something so normal about the 3 of us being together. Today we spent the day by Adam's bedside, encouraging him, sitting with him, praying for him, taking care of him... just being with him. I have watched so many tender and sweet moments where Mackenzie is at Adam's side just talking to him about whatever happens to be on her mind. Without reserve she climbs up next to him and lifts his arm to set it around her as if he's holding her. I am so proud of both of them and my heart is full, they have both worked so hard to have such a special relationship.

Adam had a very quiet day, he's still resting quite a bit during his day. Last night Adam didn't sleep well, and therefore led him to be asleep most of the day today. Dr. Ewend ordered another CT scan, he wanted to see if there has been any changes with the amount of fluid on Adam's brain to help decide what type of Ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VP Shunt). Normally our bodies make about 500cc's (or about 17oz) of cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) and our bodies reabsorb it. Adam's body is still producing, but it doesn't reabsorb any of it and this is what the shunt helped with. The EVD (extraventricular drain) is replacing the shunt while it's out, and with the EVD we are actually able to see the exact amount of CSF Adam is draining.

Adam's CT showed no change, he's still showing large ventricles so they can't even adjust the EVD to see if Adam would be able to absorb some of his own CSF, because if they did it would cause too much intercranial pressure for him. So the good news is this will help them to prepare and decide for the right kind of VP shunt for Adam. This will be Adam's third, the first one that was a non-programmable one failed, the second one was a programmable one and this proved to save us because the doctors can adjust it, and the third is undecided. I let Dr. Ewend know my opinion and I know he is taking it into consideration, but no decisions will be made as to which one he will choose for several more days.

I have to laugh about this... I have been trying to get Adam' to take vitamins for the last year and a half and he has just refused, so I was talking with Adam's neurologist (Dr. Jordan) and asked him about vitamins and he ordered vitamins for him... this makes me laugh. He's now getting vitamin C and I am waiting to hear if he can get vitamin B, E, and D... but hey, we're off to a good start.

Tonight I had the awesome privilege of watching our good friend (and a member of our small group) and his daughter get baptized. It was such a wonderful joyful celebration to watch someone surrender all that they are to Him. God is glorified when we come to Him and surrender our lives. Being able to surrender is a daily sometimes moment by moment choice. To surrender is a voluntary act on my part to hand everything over to God, remembering that I am his sheep and He is the Shepard. I wrote awhile ago that sheep cannot physically carry loads because it will cause their spinal cords to collapse. I believe there is a reason we are His sheep, we are not to carry our loads and burdens on our own. I am learning daily to surrender my all to Him. Surrendering to God involves a relationship, and this relationship involves trust and faith.

This is something I found in one of my quiet times, its served as a good check up for me to ask myself am I fully surrendered...

  • Surrendering is an act of worship. Ask God to change your viewpoint so you can worship Him through a surrendered spirit.

  • Surrender is a form of humility. James 4:6-7 says, "But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: 'God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.' Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:6-10).

  • Surrender your mind, will, and emotions. This is often the toughest part of surrendering. Romans 6:13 says, "Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness."

  • Surrendering to God is life-changing and freeing. God desires that we be over-comers! 1 John 4:4 says, "You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world."

Like I mentioned above, to surrender it all is something I am always having to work on. God has shown me that when I truly surrender, He is there and it's for Him to carry the weight, it's my responsibility to have faith, to trust, to believe that He is in control. One thing I have learned on this journey, I cannot worry, have doubt, or fear AND completely trust and be sold out, surrendered to Christ trusting and believing He is in control... fear and trusting cannot coexist... I can't worry and trust in Him at the same time. I am choosing to believe, trust, and hold onto my faith, because He is enough for me. I have to allow Him to guide my steps... Jeremiah 10:23 says "I know, O Lord, that a man's life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps." Psalm 37:23 (NKJV) "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord"... I can't even imagine where God will take my family if I continue to surrender and allow Him to guide our steps.

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