When we stopped in to visit today, we met up in the ICU waiting room with Sally, Michael’s mom. Again she shared pages of notes that she had taken while listening to a sermon on the hospital television. Which I just want to say is totally awesome that somehow Stony Brook has a channel where this is available. I know for fact that Sally has been incredibly encouraged and I’m sure many others have as well.
The word of the day, was focus. There has instability when it comes to Michael’s pressure levels during the past few days. A text from Sally will let us know to pray for them and so we do. And thankfully, God has been faithful in allowing them to come down when they need to.
But throughout these times, it’s hard not to focus on everything else. On fear or uncertainty or the unknown. But keeping our focus is the most important thing that we need to do in times of trouble. In Matthew 14, you can read the story of how Jesus walks on water. Peter is in the boat and asks to walk out to Jesus. And he does pretty good. Until he loses his focus. The Bible tells us that when he saw the wind and the waves he began to sink. In a great turn of events, we then learn that Jesus immediately reaches out to help him. And we talked this morning about how important it is to keep our focus on God and His work and plan for Michael.
During the past two years, we had the privilege of taking two Mission Trips to Costa Rica with Michael and a group of our students.
Mission trips are awesome, if you ask me. And they are especially awesome for high school students. They give kids the opportunity to see other cultures and countries but most importantly, they give the opportunity to love and to serve others. Michael was pretty awesome at our Mission Trips.
He did a great job working with the kids and they all loved him. He wasn’t afraid to go and be silly and have fun. He definitely made a huge difference and throughout everything he has quite a few people in Costa Rica who are keeping up with his story and praying for him.
And tying this all together. On one of the trips, we told the kids that part of the goal of the trip was for them to memorize Philippians 4:4-13. We were pretty serious about encouraging them to memorize this portion of the Bible. One day, I remember walking up to a group of our kids that were studying and having a particularly hard time with remembering the order of the words in verse 8. Michael walked over and said, “Oh, I got that part. I just remember the word, Tuh-nur-pla.” We looked at him like he was crazy. But then he explained, “It’s TNR-PLA. True, Noble, Right, Pure, Lovely and Admirable.” And then it all made sense. And if you read the end of the verse, it tells us that this is what our focus should be on.
Michael continues to be in critical condition. Most importantly, we want to pray that his pressure levels stay low, so his brain and body can start to heal. They are doing all they can to keep him calm and stable and it all just takes time. As from yesterday’s update from Sally, they are just asking that people pray at this time as opposed to being up at the hospital for now. Again, they are so appreciative of everyone and the love and support that they are showing to Michael.
So tonight, let’s keep our focus on the things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable and pray these things for our dear and amazing friend.