3.23.06, 10 p.m.

March 23, 2006 at 10:11 pm 29 comments

New post received from Mike's family. . . 

Loved Ones and Friends,

In the morning, while at home, on Tuesday, March 21st, Mike suffered a hemorrhage in the left side of his brain, in the temporal lobe (near his left temple). The hemorrhaging occurred at the site of an AVM (arterio-venous malformation) which had been discovered several months ago, following a CT scan made necessary when Mike suffered a concussion playing flag football. (The AVM was not caused by the concussion. The AVM is congenital in nature, and had been present for years – often AVM’s do not cause any problems for those who have them, and they are often never diagnosed at all.)

We may all be thankful that Mike was home with Michelle, and that he was able to be immediately transported to a hospital just a mile from his home, where emergency surgery was performed to relieve his brain of the pressure brought on by the bleeding, to remove a blood clot, and to stop further bleeding. The surgery was completed in about three hours, and Mike’s neurosurgeons commented that the procedure went better than anyone could have expected.

Mike is being watched closely, and he is now in intensive care. He is stable, but he is presently in a comatose condition. Mike has not regained consciousness since the onset of the hemorrhage at his home. He is breathing on his own, but he is on a ventilator in order that he receive assistance in breathing, and in order that he receive air which is richer in oxygen than normal air. Mike’s heart is beating strong and steadily. We may praise God for Mike’s good physical health, strength, and youth, all of which give him a better chance for recovery.

Mike’s primary challenges right now do not appear to be related to his bodily health, as much as to his neurological health – the health of his brain. We pray and watch for signs of neurological recovery. Mike is responsive to touch, and he will react to sensations, even by movement of his body. While this movement is a positive first step, it is important to understand that his movements are, at this time, of a basic grade of neurological response, and that we must pray for a higher level of response (which will indicate a restoration of higher brain function). This may take some time, and we must be faithful. We MUST believe. Mk 11:23-24.

So, while there IS cause for praise and thanks to our Lord, there is also urgent need for fervent and ongoing prayer. Mike has sustained an extremely severe brain injury at the site of the hemorrhage, and at the brain stem. The injury relates to the bleeding, and to the necessary surgical intervention, but most notably to the pressure which built up before surgery could relieve that pressure. As these words are written, on the evening of March 23rd (Mike’s 34th birthday), the simple truth is that the full extent of the damage is unknown and unknowable even to Mike’s surgeons.

We are being told that, right now, we must wait to see how Mike will respond to the surgery and to the treatment he now receives which stabilizes him and maintains those conditions which best support the healing propensity of his own body. The medical professionals around him have worked hard to remove the obstacles which medical science allows them to remove, in order that Mike’s brain can now recover.

Praying is the most important thing which we can do for Mike at this time — specifically, praying for better and better neurological responsiveness, for the eventual full return of higher brain function and consciousness.

The need for prayer is urgent and continual, as these early stages are viewed to be extremely critical to Mike’s long-term recovery outlook. Be assured that Mike and Michelle KNOW that they have your love and support. There continues to be an overwhelming outpouring of support from around the country.

Please let us also now overwhelm Heaven with prayer — faithful, unceasing, and expectant prayer. And let our persistence be unyielding, as we take guidance from Luke 11:8.

Know that this is the most precious and the most needed gift which you can give to Mike and Michelle.

God bless you all. We love you, and we thank you.

“Again I tell you, if two of you join your voices on earth to pray for anything whatever, it shall be granted you by my Father in heaven. Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in their midst.” Matt 18:19

Entry filed under: updates.

3.23.06, 9:00 a.m. 3.24.06 9:30 pm EST

29 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lisa Haid  |  March 24, 2006 at 12:08 am

    Mike, Michelle and Family –

    My thoughts and prayers are constantly with you all. Our God has incredible plans for Mike – to give him hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)

    For when we are weak… then we are strong!!

    God bless,
    Lisa

    Reply
  • 2. Joanne Redford  |  March 24, 2006 at 12:12 am

    hey, thanks for putting together this webpage. i just wanted to let you all know that we are praying in california for you all. lots of love and prayers, joanne

    Reply
  • 3. Anne Walker  |  March 24, 2006 at 12:27 am

    This website is so great and much needed! Thanks so much for putting the time into creating it, it’s perfect. I was wanting some feedback on this, but was thinking about putting together a day (or more if possible) where people commit to praying for Mike, Michelle and their families every hour… a continual 24 (or more) hours of prayer. I think we could use this website to set up a list where people can sign up for a certain hour or half an hour …I’d love feedback from anyone letting me know what they think…

    Reply
  • 4. Amy and Alan Wolf  |  March 24, 2006 at 7:41 am

    Mike, Michelle, and Family-

    “The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put thier HOPE in his UNFAILING LOVE. Psalm 147:11b

    “The God of Israel gives POWER and STRENGTH to his people.” Psalm 68:35b

    We love you and are praying for you, you are never far from our thoughts trusting through HOPE in His UNFAILING lOVE, POWER, and STRENGTH for Mike’s healing.

    In Christ, Amy and Alan Wolf

    Reply
  • 5. Ben Lewis  |  March 24, 2006 at 9:18 am

    I wanted y’all to know that we’re praying down in Georgia. Mike was the camp speaker at Castaway Club when we took kids there in 2003. We’ve passed along the information to our prayer network, as well as all of the kids and leaders who met Mike in 2003.

    In Christ’s Service:

    Ben Lewis
    Young Life Northlake
    Area Director

    Reply
  • 6. Lisa Haid  |  March 24, 2006 at 10:17 am

    Ann – A fabulous idea. I think constant prayer is exactly what we should be doing right now. I have a 3 hour car ride tonight and will be praying the entire time. Please let me know how I can help.
    Lisa

    Reply
  • 7. Heather  |  March 24, 2006 at 10:58 am

    Anne,

    That is a great idea. Let us know how we can help.

    Walt and Heather

    Reply
  • 8. julie wachter  |  March 24, 2006 at 12:26 pm

    anne,

    a wonderful idea! aaron and audrey and i are all in.

    “be joyful always; pray continually.”
    1 thes. 5:16-17

    “…in the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. we do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express….”
    romans 8:26 (18-27)

    Reply
  • 9. Tara Cole  |  March 24, 2006 at 12:28 pm

    Anne– that sounds like a great idea let me know if I can help in any way!

    Mike, Michelle and family,
    Our prayers are constantly with you. We are thinking a lot about you guys!
    Love,
    Tara and family!

    Reply
  • 10. Lauren Schwer  |  March 24, 2006 at 1:39 pm

    Mike, Michelle, and Family, My prayers are with you constantly. You’ve got prayers coming from Boston, NY, and Alaska – the prayer warriors are organizing! Peace and love to you during the time of chaos. If there is anything I can do, please let me know. In Christ’s peace,
    Lauren

    Reply
  • 11. Jennifer Knaak  |  March 24, 2006 at 3:05 pm

    Just want you to know that we are partneriing with you in overwhelming Heaven with prayers! We started praying as soon as we heard on Tuesday morning & we will continue to pray persistently.
    In Christ’s love,
    Jennifer & Patric Knaak

    Reply
  • 12. katie and dick albaugh  |  March 24, 2006 at 3:13 pm

    We are praying for you, Mike, and Michelle and kids..and your families….and will continue to pray, as mentioned, expectantly. God bless you. We are with you through the Spirit.

    Much love,
    Katie and Dick Albaugh

    Reply
  • 13. deb baddorf & donald goodman  |  March 24, 2006 at 3:17 pm

    Also praying hard, with and for you.

    Deb Baddorf (NPC sound gal) & hubby Donald Goodman

    Reply
  • 14. Amanda (Loan) Huddle  |  March 24, 2006 at 3:55 pm

    Mike and Michelle’s obedience to the Lord’s call on their lives is a big part of why my younger sister and I are Christians! My husband and I are serving the Lord in Texas, through South Texas Region Young Life. We join with you all in your prayers for this awesome family. The Lord hears us all and is capable of miraculous things!

    Reply
  • 15. Patti Hanson  |  March 24, 2006 at 4:31 pm

    Michelle, Mike and Family –

    Please know that you are being prayed for – we are all partnering together and flooding heaven with our praises for our AWESOME God and requests for a quick and complete healing for you.

    Our God is so big and He is so able to meet your needs – I hope that you can find rest in the peace of those words.

    Patti Hanson (NPC)

    Reply
  • 16. allison  |  March 24, 2006 at 4:43 pm

    Hi, my name is Allison. I live in Lexington, Kentucky where I attend Young Life every week. I just want you to know my family will be praying for your alls family. Always remember, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Phillipians 4:13. God bless you all.

    Reply
  • 17. Sara  |  March 24, 2006 at 5:09 pm

    I’m live in Grand Rapids, MI (its amazing how far the prayers have spread!), and I’ve heard of Mike’s story through a friend. My prayers have been and are with Mike, Michelle and their family. Be strong and always remember, that Jesus is always there to lean on, cry with, praise to, and rejoice with. I pray for a solid recovery for Mike, and may God bless the family friends of this, from what I have heard, super amazing guy!

    Reply
  • 18. Tom  |  March 24, 2006 at 5:14 pm

    Keeping Mike and family in my prayers. Many blessings to all.

    Reply
  • 19. Emily and Tom Sederstrand  |  March 24, 2006 at 5:57 pm

    We are spreading the prayers for Mike here in upstate NY!

    Reply
  • 20. Beth Griebel  |  March 24, 2006 at 6:12 pm

    Z’s
    We love you all so much. The ways each of you have touched our lives is immeasurable. We are praying for you all constantly. Michelle, I wish I could be there to play with your hair to help you relax and to tackle you with lots of hugs. Mike has always been a fighter and I know that will continue. As I told you (Michelle) the other day, he is going to have some amazing stories to share about the power of God for plenty of upcoming club talks. Our God is huge, I am holding onto his goodness. MIKE, you hold onto the hand of our sweet Savior as he carries you through this trial.

    “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.” Psalm 91:14-16

    Again we send all our love,
    Dan and Beth Griebel
    Burbank Young Life

    P.S. Anne, you can count us in for the prayer chain. Let us know ylbeth@yahoo.com

    Reply
  • 21. Keith and Lisa Wiehe  |  March 24, 2006 at 6:19 pm

    Michelle, Mike and family,

    We are praying for you all and know that God is with you.

    Lisa and Keith

    Reply
  • 22. Michelle Yoo  |  March 24, 2006 at 7:04 pm

    Michelle, Mike, and family:

    My prayers are with you. All of our prayers are with all of you.

    Michelle and Mike, you have devoted your lives to making the lives of others full of God’s grace and during this time of hardship, the lives you have touched gather together in prayer. We will stand strong and together. Know that we are with you through prayer.

    I send my love to you.

    Michelle Yoo
    mhyoo2@uiuc.edu

    Reply
  • 23. Shelly Shafer  |  March 24, 2006 at 8:25 pm

    Zegarski family,

    God’s family is far reaching…through Heather Zegarski and Kara Conrad (friend from Wheaton College who’s husband is the youth pastor at NPC) I heard of Mike’s condition. We are praying for Mike and ALL of his family fervently here in Florida. I have informed my parents, who live in Idaho, and they are lifting you up to our Great Healer and Sustainer as well.

    With great hope,

    Jeff & Shelly Shafer

    Reply
  • 24. Bethany Achterberg  |  March 24, 2006 at 9:41 pm

    My thoughts and prayers are with Michelle and the Zegarski family. I will continually pray for Mike and hope for the best.
    With love and prayer,
    Bethany

    Reply
  • 25. Ellie Leibovitz  |  March 25, 2006 at 12:06 am

    Dearest Zegarski’s
    You all are amazing. I think about how God used the two of you in my life story and I am overwhelmed with gratitude. But this is not just me, God has used the talents of you both to touch so many lives. This web site is great, the seeds you have planted are growing with abundance. I love you all.

    Anne, I am in. Let me know what I can do.

    Love and prayers,
    Ellie
    emleibo@wideopenwest.com

    Reply
  • 26. Rob Engelhardt  |  March 25, 2006 at 2:43 am

    WOW. I have been praying Mark 11 over Mike since Tuesday – speaking directly to the “mountain” in addition to speaking with God about the “mountain” My prayers continue to be with you all, without ceasing.

    In the name of Yahweh Rophe,
    Rob Engelhardt

    Reply
  • 27. summer phillips  |  March 25, 2006 at 3:47 am

    anne-
    brent and cole and I are in for the prayer day or week or month or however long it takes. I always thought the saying “Christ + Nothing = Enough” was just another cheesy christian bumpersticker…….. until tuesday, now i truely know that Abba is so amazingly enough for us in this life.
    i love you michelle my belle, kiss kaela roo and eli eli uh ooaahh for me 🙂

    Reply
  • 28. Dottye and Lew Luttrell  |  March 25, 2006 at 7:45 am

    We were so privileged to do pre-marital counseling with Mike and Michelle some years ago – we learned the depth of their character and their commitment to serving their Lord all their days. Now we ask God that if it please Him He would grant them more days together, and that God’s mysterious purposes would be accomplished through this seemingly tragic event. HE is our sovereign God in all things!!!

    Reply
  • 29. THE FEDERSCHMIDT FAMILY  |  March 25, 2006 at 6:55 pm

    WE ARE ALL IN CONSTANT PRAYER FOR YOU MICHELLE, AND YOUR FAMILY. THE PRAYER MEETINGS WE HAVE ALREADY ATTENDED HAVE BEEN POWERFUL AND WE COULD FEEL GODS PRESENSE IN A VERY TANGIBLE WAY. THE LOVE AND RESPECT OF THE STAFF, VOLUNTEER LEADERS. AND OTHERS HAS BEEN AN AMAZING TESTIMONY TO THE IMPACT YOU AND MIKE HAVE HAD AND CONTINUE TO HAVE ON OUR WALKS WITH GOD. PSALM 121 “I LIFT UP MY EYES TO THE HILLS, WHERE DOES MY HELP COME FROM? MY HELP COMES FROM THE LORD, THE MAKER OF HEAVEN AND EARTH.” WHAT A LOVING AND POWERFUL GOD WE HAVE! JUST LET’S ALL KEEP “LIFTING OUR EYES TO THE HILLS” IN PRAYER. ALL OUR PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU AND OUR CHURCH{IMMANUEL LUTHERAN IN BATAVIA, IL} AND MENS BIBLE STUDY GROUP HAVE JOINED IN PRAYER TO SUPPORT YOU. MAY GOD CONTINUE TO GIVE YOU HIS PEACE. KURT, PATRICE, KARLA, MICHELLE, ERIKA, AND KELLY

    Reply

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