I'm lying awake tonight, and as tired as I am after a full day working at The Pantry unloading trucks, stocking shelves, and then doing the other hundred things my father-in-law Alden and Mother-in-law Linda do there while they spent the bulk of their day at the hospital I'm not sure as we near two if sleep is possible tonight.
In about five hours my Father-in-law will enter a surgical OR for a valve and aortic replacement. The surgeon will literally be replacing nearly a quarter of his heart! This is major surgery, especially for a 75yo with long history of heart problems. Ever since the aneurysm that necessitates this procedure was found six weeks ago as both a church body and a family we have been praying that God's will be done to heal him. All along we have felt reminded by the Spirit that sometimes God uses the hands of skilled surgeons in that healing.
So here we are: In three hours the rest of the family will get Alden checked in while I am home praying and getting ready to go back into the Pantry to make sure that things continue to run smoothly there while waiting for news from that hospital 12 miles away.
I spoke to Dad tonight for the last time before surgery and he fealt at peace with the surgery moving forward. The entire family is concerned, obviously at different levels.
My feelings are hard to describe as I lay here writing this. You see, a little over 13 years ago my father went in for open heart surgery. 30 days later we had lost him. Part of me really wants to be at that hospital to support my wife and her family, but a big part of me feels guilty that I'm glad I don't have to face that tortuous wait again, because I know I'll spend most of it thinking of my Dad.
I know this is all in Gods hands. I know the only practical solution is for me to rest and be ready to fill Alden's shoes at the pantry for the next few weeks while he recovers, especially tomorrow while everyone is adjusting to his absence. Now if I could get my body to cooperate.
If it comes to mind between 7:00am and 12:00pm PDT your prayers and positive thoughts would be greatly appreciated.