Summers are always fun times for us here on Long Island.
(In case you couldn’t tell by the many summer stories and beach shots that I’ve shared)
And about four summers ago, we kicked things off for Summer Youth Group with a Four Square Tournament in our church basement. I’ve shared before that out at Eastport Bible Church, we aren’ the sort of church that has a huge recreational facility for our use. Thankfully, we have a very generous elementary school that lets us use their gym which we appreciate so very much. And besides that, we really do get by quite well just hanging out and playing games in our church basement.
Four Square has always been a favorite for our Youth Group. Partly, because it’s one of the few games that you can consistently play in a relatively small space. And partly, because it’s just fun. I know that I’ve shared pictures from that particular tournament, but tonight decided to share a short video from clips that I found. We had a pretty fun night and in case you were wondering, you can find our friend Michael tearing it up in his awesome green shorts.
I was thankful to get to go and see Michael today. After enjoying a beautifully warm morning by taking a nice, long walk with a few friends, I drove up to spend some time with him. When I got there, I learned that he needed to have a surgery today to adjust the new drain. It was a little bit of a set back, I think, but something that was needed. His doctors and nurses were on top of things and I think it really was just one of those things.
I was able to spend a good hour or so with him, his mom and Katelyn before he went down for surgery. I held his hand and prayer with and for him. And to be honest, a part of me was just sad that he would have to have another surgery knowing that he’s been through so very much.
For many days in the past week or so, he’s been doing so well. He even has this green ball that he’s used a bit for therapy for his hands. It’s been so good to see him get a little stronger each time with it. Sarah (whose hands are pictured here with his) has been his biggest cheerleader when it comes to encouraging him to move the ball up and down. It’s been so great to see him gaining little bits of strength.
So then today, was a bit hard, I think. But tonight, I was reminded of 1 Corinthians 12:9. Paul writes in the verses right around this one about how God allowed him to have a thorn in his flesh that tormented him. He shares how he pleaded for God to take it away, three times. But God answers that His “Grace is sufficient” and that ultimately, His “Power is made perfect in weakness.” Paul comes to the conclusion that considering this truth, when he is weak, he is actually strong because of the strength that God gives.
We all have our weaknesses. But isn’t it beautiful, that God comes into those and makes strength? I know and keep praying that God will give Michael the strength that he needs, though his body may be weak right now. And I trust that God will do this for Michael and I trust that He will do this for me and for all of us as well.
Please pray for Michael as he recovers from this new surgery and that it would be a success. And please pray for him into the weekend as he continues to be tested to see if he is ready for his next surgery.