Today, Rachael was completely off the ventilator. No more vent!! The prayers are working!! Rachael offered expressions today as well as opening her eyes without 'noxious' stimulus. She is not able to 'track' people with her eyes we are not sure if she is seeing yet. We are cautious now on what we consider major moves. Now that she is breathing on her own (major move!), her fever appears to be trending lower, and she is opening her eyes, we are praying that she will recognize us or give us a verifiable voluntary move. We thought earlier hand squeezes etc. were voluntary and verifiable. This is not so. Actually, we found out that a squeeze of the hand is not a good indicator of neurological healing. Pointing on command, wiggling a toe on command, opening and closing eyes on command all are. Via command, these are indications of higher brain functions than reflexes. The reflexes are controlled by the brain stem and Rachael's appears to be working quite well. An indication of a big move will be a repeatable movement by command. Please focus prayer on that.
On Monday Rachael will get the feeding tube removed and replaced by a G Tube that will add to her comfort.
One of the pulmonary specialists stated that Rachael hit her hand in response to noxious stimuli. We thought that great news. Not that she should be hitting people but we will take whatever we can get.
Words of encouragement for Rachael continue to pour into the email of firstname.lastname@example.org. Keep them coming.
We were sent a rough draft of a song from Big D (Denise) called 'Why Should I Worry'. It was an incredible and timely word that touched us deeply. It is amazing how God works corporately.
Music ministers to us and Rachael and Phil Wickham's song "In My Love" is another that has spoken to our hearts.
A dear brother in Christ, Milt Seiler taught at our Men's Breakfast on the experiential knowledge of Christ and how we can take a helathy look back at our past and test our growth in Christ. He discussed how the knowledge Peter speaks of in these verses is not the knowledge of God one gets from studying the Word which is highly important, but knowledge by the experiences of a personal relationship with Christ. It was from 2 Peter 1 1-9. In Verse 4 Milt highlighted the wonderful promise that we can partake in the divine nature. Also in Rachael's daily devotional it spoke of Peter's change from an objective relationship with a Prophet that could heal to a personal one with Jesus when Christ filled Peters net until it broke. Peter had witnessed other healings, including his own mother-in-law but this miracle struck Peter to the heart and as it says in Luke 5:9 '
9 For amazement had seized him and all his companions because of the catch of fish which they had taken;
Peter had objectively witnessed miracles. He had the knowledge that Christ was a healing prophet. It did not become personal until the big catch. Later in scripture Jesus will lead Peter to a firmer understanding of His personal love and finally in 2 Peter, Peter tells us of the experiential knowledge of Jesus that can only come from a personal relationship with Him. Trials will bring those in Christ closer to Him. He will show up in very personal ways.
Another brother at church, Tom, suffered a severe head trauma accident a few years ago. His story is incredible and he was a big encouragement for us today when he shared what his sister recounted of his early times in the hospital.
So as of tonight we have:
- Tracheotomy - Much easier to maintain, more comfort, less chance of bacterial infection.
- Breathing independently - No more ventilator
- Several instances of eye lids opening, blinking and closing.
- Good eye reaction to light.
- Lower Temp
- G Tube on Monday
We are encouraged, especially with Rachael now free of the vent, breathing on her own.
Please keep your prayers moving along. As we all get busy and back to life, we tend to forget that personal relationship that we have with our Lord. We do not need to be knee bent, head bowed, hands clasped to get a prayer to God. We do need to remain obedient, we do need to take the pause to pray and we must not doubt that our prayers are being heard. They are and they are effective! Always remembering that His will be done.
Please pray for God to permit Rachael a voluntary sign that can be repeated.
We thank you guys for all the prayer. You are incredible.