August 9 - Day 56

But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. -Hebrews 11:6

I remember doing an essay in college about the life of Abraham, a man with exemplary faith. 
And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. -James 2:23 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God. -Hebrews 11:8-10 And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah Jireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen. And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: Genesis 22:14-16 Jehovah Jireh literally means "The LORD will Provide." Abraham understood his covenant relationship with God. He questioned not when God commanded him to sacrifice his son, Isaac. He simply obeyed and completely trusted God. This is the type of faith I've always wanted to live by. I remember singing this simple chorus as a child:
Jehovah Jireh my provider
His grace is sufficient for me
For me, for me
Jehovah Jireh my provider
His grace is sufficient for me
The Lord shall provide all my needs
According to His riches in Glory
The Lord shall provide Himself a lamb for sacrifice
Jehovah Jireh takes care of me
Of me, of me
This is the God I know and serve. The Lord is our Provider! He continues to show Himself faithful and our hearts are filled with thanksgiving. God sustained Dean through the night and continues to do so! I especially thank the Lord for the way in which He led us and provided surgeons who could perform the necessary operation on his face and skull. We've had concerns about Dean's face since day 1 and have searched for help. Now with hindsight I see how God has carried, sustained, and guided us on this journey as He did Abraham to the land of promise. The Lord provides in small ways too. He placed a cot for me to sleep on in the first room Dean was transferred to at Morristown Hospital. We were then unable to bring the cot to ICU last night, so I pushed two chairs together in his room and the nurse showed compassion as she awoke me around 1:30 am with a recliner that laid back. The nurses in ICU have been great and the doctors are wonderful. In the morning, Dean was transferred to a stretcher and we journeyed downstairs for his CT scan. It was quite the process to move him as three nurses and I squeezed into the elevator with two portable poles containing IV fluids along with a portable ventilator. The CT scan showed no internal bleeding in his brain! It also showed that his brain is expanding out and filling the cavity that had been created by the air pockets in the left frontal lobe. Dean's brain is in God's hands!
After surgery, his forehead was wrapped with white gauze and tape and the swelling was minimal. However, the peak time of swelling is 3 or 4 days. They also inserted a drain tube with a collection pocket into the top his skull that went down into his forehead. This allowed the extra fluids and blood to drain into this pocket which was emptied every two hours. This afternoon the doctor removed the bandages which had covered 36 staples going in an arch from ear to ear across his head. She then removed the tube and I looked away as she placed two more staples over the small incision. It is slightly swollen more where the tube was vertically inserted on his forehead above his nose. They shaved about two inches of his hair back where the long incision was made. The staples will remain for at least two weeks. The doctors said Dean will need to be much stronger physically before proceeding with the second phase of his facial surgery. Before noon, Dean began breathing on his own with the trach collar! The plan is to move him into the step-down unit tomorrow. We thank the Lord his secretions have been little and more clear. This evening I caught his tears trickling down his face as they suctioned him. Dean moves both feet around but shows little movement with his arms.They resumed his tube feedings tonight and found some blood in his stomach mixed with fluids. We need continued prayer for no further or unknown complications.
Specific Requests:
-Pray that he digest his tube feedings properly and receive all the nourishment possible. They had to change his formula again. He has had some digestive problems this past week.
-Pray that his incision would heal quickly and that extra fluids would be absorbed. 
-Pray that no bleeding or blood clots develop anywhere in his body. 
-Pray that no infections develop. There are several areas at high risk.
-Pray that the swelling would be minimal and the recovery from the surgery be quick.
-Pray that he is healthy enough to go to Kessler so he can begin rehab.
-Pray for continued wisdom, guidance and care from his doctors and nurses.
-Pray that Dean awakes from his coma before leaving this hospital! 
We ask for continued prayer for Dean's complete healing and full restoration. Our God hears the prayers of  those who diligently seek Him! Thank you all for praying!

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