Sunday, September 7, 2008

Breath of Life

Loved Ones,

Thanks for all the emails back to Ray from his message last night. Believe me, he read them all, and they all meant a great deal. He had a good day today. We went with his whole family to the White Sox game. Boy, that was a special treat. It was great to be together. If only the Sox won the game!

We have a big week ahead of us, and an even bigger week next week.

Tomorrow we have labs to see Ray's white blood cell count and if he'll be ready for chemo on Wednesday.

Wednesday we see Ray's doctor at Northwestern. Ray will have a tumor marker test so that will give us an indication of the progress of the chemo on the tumors. We will also get a liver function number either Monday or early Wednesday. This will also help to inform us on the continuing impact of Ray's chemo. He's been feeling a little fuller so we are really praying that the fuller feeling is just a chemo side effect, not a change in the size of his tumor.

Also sometime this week (probably Friday) we'll hear the results of one of Ray's genetic tests. This could potentially rule out the hereditary cancer so we are really praying that it will. We are praying that God will spare our family from any more cancer! And this is a heartfelt prayer!

After round 8 concludes on Friday, we'll travel to Texas on Saturday. God has paved the road ahead of us in every way so that our travel will run as smoothly as it can. Still, traveling with the girls and Ray just off chemo will be tiring for Ray. So we are praying for extra energy.

Our first doctor appointment at MD Anderson will be next Monday. This will be followed by scans, tests, and then a follow up visit with the doctor. Our trip there will serve two functions. One, the scans performed there will show us the progress on Ray's liver (this would have happened anyway at Northwestern, but since MD Anderson requires their own scans, we timed the visit so that he does not have to repeat the scans right in a row.) The second reason for our trip is just to get the benefit of another cancer expert in terms of clinical judgments regarding chemo treatments and potential future options.

So. Now you know. Both the schedule, and our prayer needs. Of course I'll write with more, but I just wanted to lay it out for you so that you know and can be praying.

Interestingly, both last Sunday and this Sunday we've been sent similar Bible stories of healing. In both the stories, the breath of God or God's servants brought people from death back to life. Today our story was about dry bones -- that came to life.

"Then he said to me, "Prophesy to these bones and say to them, 'Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.' "

Then he said to me, "Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live.' " So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army. Ezekial 37:4-6, 9-10

We are praying that God's breath will be on Ray this week and next, restoring him to full and healthy life.

not alone and not afraid --

kristin and ray