September 5, 2006 at 6:49 pm 12 comments

i rented The End of the Spear to watch with mike but he was only nominally interested in a movie today so i finished watching it myself. i was reminded of how excited i get when i read elizabeth elliot’s Through Gates of Splendor. I read through some if it a few years ago with a favorite Young Life alumni home for the summer and that time decided to highlight favorite passages from the diaries of these 5 men who risked and died in their adventure to share the story of Christ with an indigenous people in the Amazon. Every time i remember this witness i wonder about our own tame faith here in comfort. we so rarely risk anything for the Lord’s use. i paged through my old book and found this quote from Ed McCully writing to his fiancee, “When you pray, ask the Lord definitely to show us where he wants us to spend our lives, and that we’ll be willing to spend them there, even anxious to.”
What a difficult prayer when i consider it. am i willing to say that this sickness of mike’s, this hospitalization, this very long recovery is a place where God could be using us as we spend our lives here in this moment? Would i have prayed that God would show us a hard place to spend our lives and been trusting enough to look forward to this hard place as God’s calling to use us? i do not presume to know whether this was all God’s perfect intention for us to experience this but i have no doubt that he is at work within this place in our lives right now. and if God is at work here, shall our attitudes be discouraged or anxious or self-centered? or can we be eager to spend our lives, to use them up, to give them away, today, in waiting for healing and strength, in coping with endless visits and logistics and plans, in allowing God all the time and opportunity he wants to work in and through our lives?
that is a lot of mumbo jumbo to say… it is hard, i am sure to be mike. it is hard to see mike and experience the slowness of this road with him. it is hard to slow down and simply allow the frustration to sink in instead of leaping ahead with our human plans and expectations and encouragements. Some would say those missionaries were idiots to give up their lives on a nonsense whim of God’s calling. i often presume that we just need to get through this. recovery time with mike. but my heart tonight says, slow down. live in the hardship of today and see what God has for today. he is not always at work for a result. God seems to like to work in the hard struggles as much as the redeeming ends. i pray that God is at work in the slowness of today. that this slow pace is not wasted but is still evidence of God’s perfect timing. God is good. all the time. i pray that mike and i, our families and friends, are eager as we spend our lives here today, in prayer, in patience, in waiting, in trusting.
mike is doing well. he is at manorcare still, getting therapy, receiving visitors. his fevers have been controlled by the antibiotics he is getting. he is moving limbs, sometimes mumbling or mouthing words through the trach. he is responsive and alert most of the time. thanks always for your care, for your persistent prayer –       michelle

Entry filed under: updates.

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12 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Megan Pehlke  |  September 5, 2006 at 9:22 pm

    Thank you for your words and wisdom.

  • 2. Rachel E  |  September 5, 2006 at 10:02 pm

    Michelle, I have been looking forward to reading another post from you. And here it is and your words are beautiful. Thank you for your perspective. Thank you for sharing your journey with us, Michelle, Mike, your families.

  • 3. Shannon Bradford  |  September 6, 2006 at 8:52 am

    You have conquered such an amazing thought. I was recently inspired by these words: “Be still my soul, the Lord is on thy side..” It’s an amazing song that brings me much comfort. But I was reminded of how in these down times, we have to rest that God is on our side- that he wants to wrap his arms around us, if we just come to him. I am amazed at your heart and your persistence in prayer. Many are praying for Mike daily who are many miles away!
    Shannon Bradford (Gervel)

  • 4. Deb Stecher  |  September 6, 2006 at 9:15 am

    Dear Michelle,
    You are loved and prayed for … thanks for sharing your thoughts with us… even as I travel you are in my heart and always lifted in thoughts and prayers. I wish there waas more that we could do…
    We love you all…

  • 5. Beth Griebel  |  September 6, 2006 at 1:48 pm

    It is so amazing to witness your perspective in the midst of this trial. You are not surviving, but thriving and I am blessed to see God move through and in this entire situation. We will remain faithful to prayer for you all. We continue to wait expectantly to see what the Lord will do next and will hold to the truth that he works all things for good. We love you and miss you!
    Dan and Beth

  • 6. Brian Bobbitt  |  September 6, 2006 at 10:35 pm

    Wow. Thank you Michelle.

  • 7. Linda And Marty Cuellar  |  September 7, 2006 at 9:40 am

    Thank you Michelle for keeping us inspired. We continue to pray forMike and you.
    God Bless.
    Marty and Linda

  • 8. Heather Schmidt  |  September 7, 2006 at 7:45 pm


    It was great to see you the other day. Thanks for listening to me babble on and on about nothing. Sorry I changed the channel on you. I wasn’t sure if you really wanted to watch poker so I found you another sports channel (one I wanted to watch). You amaze me. Your strength (nice handshake), your patience with visitors and the way you listen (such a gift you have always had). I know that may sound strange, but you still seem like the same Mike in the regard. I miss hearing you but I know you heard me and that means a lot.

    Take care you two. We are praying for you and wishing you God’s peace.

    Love and prayers,

  • 9. Heather Z.  |  September 7, 2006 at 8:19 pm

    Once again, I wish I could make the trip with Dan this weekend to see you, Mike, McKaela and Eli. But your new little nephew is keeping me on my toes and giving me little rest! I can’t wait for the day to introduce our Michael to his Uncle Mike! What a lucky little boy to be named after such a wonderful man of God. Can’t wait for you to see him, too.

    Tell Mike I love him because with everything else Dan will want to tell Mike, he’ll probably forget!

    I miss our talks lately but know I think of you, Mike and the kids so many times throughout the day.


  • 10. Karin Rodriguez  |  September 7, 2006 at 9:25 pm

    Mike and Michelle,
    Thanks again for allowing me to visit during your time together.
    I loved going on the walk with you two, Mike I hope you enjoyed your time outside. Mike you really are doing so great!!!
    You have such control of your eyes, head and arms. Although I was disapointed in your response to my question about needing anything from the running store, I was so thrilled at the same time to see you lift your arm and motion your hand NO!!!

    You will be up and running soon!!! Well maybe you won’t want to run, but I know you will be able to!

    Michelle you are such a beautiful person with such a beautiful spirit, I love seeing you with your kids and Mike. Thank you so much for allowing me to help and be a part of your lives.

    Love you all!!!

  • 11. Barbara Gobrail  |  September 8, 2006 at 7:50 pm

    We may dream about all of the “what if..” but the Lord wants only our “here and now!” I keep thinking about Michael Card’s song about: “To know you in the NOW” – this is where the rubber meets the road, this is where the Lord receives our gift of self! We (I) tend to think of the next item on my list, my schedule tomorrow, my next project. But this song is now my mantra and it helps me focus on the people, the event in front of me! My prayer is the last verse of the song: But I long to see Your presence in reality, but I don”t know how — let me see You in the NOW! This is also my prayer for you!

  • 12. Raeanne  |  September 10, 2006 at 8:56 pm


    I am in tears right now, pure tears of joy, of awe, for our amazing God!! Particularly the words that stuck out in my mind, “God is good. All the time.” Latley I have has these words spoken to me, ringing in my mind, reading them, and even out of my own mouth. Today even in my Kindergarten Sunday School class while talking about how God made the world, night and day, water, sky, plants, trees, seasons, living creatures, and God saw that it was good. “God is good. All the time.” Then in Hebrews 12:10, but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. “God is good, all the time.” Thank you for your words always.

    May God just bless you and your family!! You are in my prayers- Raeanne


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