When it goes bad, when they spike a fever, relapse or worse - it is soul-crushing. It is also hard when new names are added to our list (we have several this week). It is a back-handed blessing, because I wouldn't trade praying for these families for ANYTHING!
But in my heart of hearts of hearts - I really wish I didn't have to. I really wish Christ would come back and put an end to all of this. Or I wish He would go ahead and heal all these kids - all cancer - so we wouldn't have to deal with the devastation.
I know struggle like this brings Him glory because so many people are motivated to get closer to Him based on our journeys. But really, I wish this weekly prayer group didn't exist. I love it but it is hard to know that every Monday, until The Lord fixes everything, I will be updating this list.
In the meantime, I will continue to pray He will do what He does best - heal and cure and comfort.
I am thinking about (and feel free to post your thoughts) - breaking the list up into two. One for those kids currently undergoing treatment and those who are in remission. I haven't quite decided on it yet and I'll be honest with you why.
I want to wait and see if I can move Sophia to the "(Re)Mission Accomplished" list. As my dear, sweet, wonderful Sister-Friend Gindi Vincent said yesterday (as we were privileged to steal a few moments away together, the first time since February), I am concerned. I am not fearful (cause I was healed of that), but I am concerned/anxious/wrapped up in emotion about the coming scans and following results.
She said that was ok. So, I'm ok with feeling that way.
I would love to honor The Lord for His Grace and healing (physical, emotional and spiritual) in the most appropriate way.
For this week, however, lift up the specific requests, but also pray for a hedge of protection around these families. I wrote about this Friday, but when I am in the TCH clinic and on the 9th floor - I can feel the war raging. The battle and our weapons are not carnal, so please pray these families would be spared the issues all so common - like broken marriages, broken relationships, broken bodies and overall brokenness. Our enemy would like nothing more than to use cancer and the effects of treatment to kill, steal and devour - so pray hard for legions of angels to surround these precious ones!
Psalm 91:11 came to mind last Tuesday as I was trying to put my mind on Christ as the battle raged around me:
For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.
PRAYER WORKS AND IT IS OUR BEST WEAPON!!
Ethan Jostad (10, Rhabdomyosarcoma) - Please pray for Ethan's family, as at 1:58pm today (Monday), Jesus took him home to be healed forever. His parents are in incredible pain, have been through so much and are going to need our prayers and support to recover.
Sophia Vogel (5, soft tissue sarcoma behind left eye) - No counts needed this week, scans next Monday and Tuesday!
Anna Grace Dennis (7, cancer free from brain stem tumor) - Pray she will recover before school starts from her mono-like symptoms!
Rylee Beard (5, Will's tumors in bladder/abdomen) - Needed platelets for the first time last week but should be fine this week. Pray for her LAST CHEMO next week to be completed without a hitch, starting next Monday!
Holden Underwood (1, ALL/MLL) - Yesterday (Sunday) was the first anniversary of his diagnosis and he spiked a fever. Was admitted today and will be there till it goes away, they find out what is causing it or he hits 48 hrs with no fever. He is VERY susceptible right now with low immunity - so please pray for protection and a quick recovery!
Matthew (5, Rhabdomyosarcoma) - Began 2nd round of radiation this week, please pray for no issues, no side effects and a strong finish to his protocol (which ends in October).
Aiden McSpadden (2, AML relapse) - Received his last dose of chemo today! He has been in such a good mood and hopefully will will get to go home for a couple of days in 2-3 weeks before he starts the next round of chemo. Pray for his immunity to not suffer and side effects to be minimal if anything at all!
Brennan Scurlock (1, neuroblastoma) - The results from his scans are in! Most of his cancer lesions on the bones previously known about have resolved or reduced in size considerably!! 2nd time bone marrow has come back negative! Praise The Lord and pray he will continue to respond so well to his treatment and will beat this cancer!
Lincoln Daniel Jones (2, ALL) - Diagnosed on July 1st, recently had a surgical procedure and is now fighting up and down temperatures. Pray for the family as they are just beginning this journey, for their strength, endurance and that they will continually place themselves in The Lord's Hands - for healing, mercy, grace, strength and peace!!
Kristina Barrett (9, sarcoma in lungs and arm) - Doing well and at only 9, wouldn't change having cancer because it brings people closer to God, through her!!
Mark (10, rhabdomyosarcoma in left hand) - Received 1st outpatient chemo last week, will continue with outpatient this week and will be inpatient next week. So far, he looks and feels good! Pray for minimal side effects and as the chemo builds in his system, he will voice any pain or issues he has so they can be addressed ASAP!
Gabbie Howe (12, brain tumor - type TBD) - Pray for her recovery from brain surgery last week, speedy and accurate diagnosis and an effective treatment plan to be laid out!
Ava Caggino (4, ATRT Brain Tumor)- she was diagnosed in June and had surgery to remove 70% of the tumor removed. She continues her treatment and this week, her counts are low - so pray for protection against germs, viruses and especially fevers!!!
Mark Ochoa (2, Wilm's Tumor) - finishing treatment soon! Pray he will hang on and beat cancer!
Ruel Bobet (20, stomach cancer) - Receiving chemo at MD Anderson this week.
Courtney Pette (16, lymphoma) - Done with her treatment, cancer and clear to go back to school!!
Tristan Smit (3, ependymoma)
Addison Marshall (18, ALL)
Natalie Fraker (4, astrocytoma)
Hudson Kadlecek (4, lymphoma)
Patton Jones (3, Burkitt's Lymphoma)
Wyatt (2, ALL)