My dad had a seemingly routine surgery last week to repair a herniated muscle in his stomach. On Wednesday he was re-admitted to the hospital because apparently something went wrong with the original surgery and he wasn't able to use the bathroom. He underwent a second surgery on Thursday, and is currently recovering. But my dad's an old man (no really, he's 73). Having two surgeries in one week in the exact same place is not a walk in the park, and I would imagine the older you are, the harder it is to deal with these complications.
Yesterday my dad was transferred to the ICU for shortness of breath. Since he's not able to use the bathroom, all the gasses in his stomach were pushing up and against his lungs, causing him to have trouble breathing. I was scared. I was scared this whole week. But God has a way of showing us that He's always there, and He always provides.
I don't talk much about my half-brother, but the truth is he's almost a carbon copy of my dad, which is probably why we get along so well. At the beginning of the week it was just me and my dad; now it's me, my dad, my half-brother, and my brother, which lifts such a huge weight off my shoulders. I know I don't have to go it alone, and I can ask and consult my half-brother (since he's much older and has more life experience) on what to do or how to best handle a situation. We can go months without speaking, but talking to him is so easy, when we reconnect it's as if we never stopped. We can openly discuss differences we experienced growing up with our dad as, well, our dad (he is my dad's second child from his first marriage, while I'm the second child of his last marriage), and we understand and truly know our father as the person he is, not as the mean old guy who wouldn't let me out past 10 p.m. on weeknights.
Then there's my small group. God has truly blessed me with these people! It's so refreshing to be able to connect with people who have an active passion and love for God and to be able to talk about everyday issues from a Christian perspective and even discuss questions that we may have about these issues. They are an excellent support group, simply because it's so laid back and unpretentious; I never feel ashamed or embarrassed to say something, even if it's something mean (because we are all haters, haha). ;) To have people who pray for you, even when it's about everyday needs, it's powerful. To be able to give and take Godly advice is powerful. My small group is exactly what I needed after this week.
Throughout this whole ordeal, God has never been far from me. While I waited by myself in the waiting room during my dad's second surgery, I knew I wasn't really alone. I prayed and read psalms and lifted my dad's life up to God, and I didn't feel scared. I was liberated. All my worry was cast upon Him, and it was exactly what everyone talks about at church all the time. I felt a wave of comfort over me, and I gave glory to God as I sat next to my father when he came out of surgery. I just watched him sleep, and thought, Thank you, God, for this man's life. Thank you for choosing him to be my father.
It's not over yet, but I'm praying for God to guide me and my brother and my dad through the next phase, which is his recovery. Please pray as well.
It's so humbling to see God in action.
Where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.