Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The end of November


I find it hard to believe that today is the last day of November 2011. 11/11 is over? Really?



My husband just turned to me and said, "Is Christmas three weeks from Sunday?" I nearly choked on my drink.

But here we are. 2011 is winding down. Tomorrow will be December, which in some ways doesn't even seem like part of the calendar year--December is a world unto its own, don't you think?

The last couple of weeks of November didn't turn out as we expected. Many of you prayed for my son, Preston, as he faced emergency surgery on November 20. Preston was discharged from the hospital on November 26, and he is recovering at home. If this semester had gone as he'd planned, he'd be attending his final week of class at UNC-Chapel Hill and getting ready to take his first batch of college finals. Instead, he's sitting at home, trying to eat a regular diet again, weaning himself off prescription pain medication.

To paraphrase Robert Burns: The best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry.

But as I consider the events of the past couple of weeks, one thing stands out very clear to me, and this I want to share with you.

Preston came home on Saturday, 11/25, just to borrow his brother's camera. He was planning to go right back to campus. Back to campus--where he would have been by himself in a dorm room, for his roommate had already left for Thanksgiving. While he was here, his stomach started hurting. He was so uncomfortable that I suggested he spend the night at home. The next day, the pain was no better, so I took him to Urgent Care. His blood pressure was so low that was transferred to Duke Hospital via ambulance, and he had emergency surgery to repair a stomach perforation a few hours later.

When I think what could have happened if he had followed his plan to go right back to campus--well, I can't think about it. Instead, I think about this:

God is good all the time. And all the time, God is good.

Preston was at home when he got sick. In other words, he was just where he needed to be. God provided everything he needed.

Preston wasn't following his plans, and spending Thanksgiving week in the hospital wasn't following my plans. But this detour from the plans meant life and health for Preston.

Have you ever had to take a detour from your plans? In retrospect, can you see that God was providing for you every step of the way?

God is good all the time. And all the time, God is good.

Won't you join me in thanking God for His protection?


25 comments:

At The Picket Fence said...

Oh Richella!! So glad to hear Preston is recovering well and we praise God with you for his protection. God really is good all the time...it is just that we so often have a different definition of the word, right? :-) Thanks so much for updating us!
Vanessa

melissa * 320 Sycamore said...

Isn't it amazing when you look back and you can see His hand? So glad you all were being watched over and that he's doing better! xo

diana said...

This is just amazing - sobering, but ultimately so gloriously right. I think maybe 2011 is gonna go down in some kind of record book for your family!

Vivienne @ the V Spot said...

Amen and amen and amen. And hallelujah.
My mom calls that "The Theory of Delay" God has us right where we need to be as part of His plan.
I shudder to think of some of the "could have been" moments in my life, and yes, I can see God is always moving and is always so good. Thank God Preston is doing well.
xoxo

Erin said...

I'm so glad to hear Preston is doing well. Isn't it strange how God cares for us in ways we don't even realize at the time? For me, I can think of so many times, but no so awesome as when my Mom discovered a lump in her breast right before my wedding (note the importance of self-exams here). The doctors performed a biopsy of the lump and the surrounding tissue (effectively, a lumpectomy) and found that the lump was benign but the tissue around it had malignancies in it. Imagine - the cancer hadn't even had a chance to form a lump which could be detected in a self-exam or a mammogram and she was able to be treated. Given that her mother died from breast cancer at 55, Mom chose an aggressive route and is now a 17 year survivor. Praise God! Sending our love to Preston and your family, Erin & children

Shelly @ Life on the Wild Side said...

Oh boy, can I relate.

Such thankfulness that God had his hand on Preston that day, and every day.

Myra @ My Blessed Life said...

Praise God for His preserving and sustaining grace! I'm so glad that Preston is recovering well. HE truly makes no mistakes. xoxo

Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...

Richella,

I'm so so happy to hear he is doing better. This reminds me so much of my college age daughter's story with her appendectomy this summer. Had she been alone at school, or had it happened a few weeks later when we left her at home to watch our son while my husband and I went out of town ... just so scary to think about.

Praise God!!

Southern Lady said...

God is good all the time, Richella! Please tell Preston that Catie and her friends have been praying for his recovery. I pray that he will be back at school soon, enjoying all of his friends and classes. I am thinking about you too. May God bless and keep you all! Carla

Angie @ The Country Chic Cottage said...

I am so glad to hear he is okay. :) God works wonders. Have a wonderful December with your "little" boy! :)

Dawn said...

i think you and i are on the same page of thankful... and what you said about december? being a wolrd unto its own? yes. those were the words i was searching for this morning. they fit. just right.

but back to thankful... His Hand is Mighty. Mighty. i have a post going up tomorrow about eric, and while the story is not the same, it is. He has created a plan. and it is Good. all the time.

i love you. and i am so thankful for preston's healing. i hope that he can still make this semester count... but what he is doing right now is so important. be the mama and make him take the time to heal!!!!

Kelli @ RTSM said...

Richella this almost made me cry! It is amazing the way that God works sometimes, and I think we often forget to be thankful that our plans don't always work out the way we want them too! I hope that Preston continues to get better.

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

Amen!! I had my plans detoured last Christmas (though not on the same level as yours). But I knew it was God's way of telling me I needed a day at home with my girls to snuggle and have Christmas fun. :)

Nadir@StitchSense said...

Wow Richella, this is so true! This reminds me of earlier this Spring when the hubs & I had to move out of our rental b/c our landlord needed her house back & we were pressed to find a place to live when my older sister & her husband suggested we stay with them, rent free for a while. It ended up being such a blessing b/c it helped us get a little ahead on some debt & to top it off, my husband lost his job while we were living there. There is NO way, I'm certain that we would have been able to make ends meet had we still been in our rental home. Being at my sister's allowed us to continue to pay the minimums that we could & my husband was blessed with an even better job two months later. Then a few months after that while we were looking for a new place to live, our old landlord's house became available again, which was much more affordable than any other place we were looking at. We were reluctant at first but we knew we weren't walking back into that house with the same challanges we had before. We felt like it was a gift from the Lord, that he held that house for us & protected us SO much during my husband's unemployment & our living situation. He knew exactly what he was doing, I don't know why that sometimes comes as a surprise me but its always a good reminder that God knows exactly what we need, when we need it. Thanks for sharing. Rejoicing with you that Preston is recovering well. :-)

Nadir@StitchSense said...

Wow Richella, this is so true! This reminds me of earlier this Spring when the hubs & I had to move out of our rental b/c our landlord needed her house back & we were pressed to find a place to live when my older sister & her husband suggested we stay with them, rent free for a while. It ended up being such a blessing b/c it helped us get a little ahead on some debt & to top it off, my husband lost his job while we were living there. There is NO way, I'm certain that we would have been able to make ends meet had we still been in our rental home. Being at my sister's allowed us to continue to pay the minimums that we could & my husband was blessed with an even better job two months later. Then a few months after that while we were looking for a new place to live, our old landlord's house became available again, which was much more affordable than any other place we were looking at. We were reluctant at first but we knew we weren't walking back into that house with the same challanges we had before. We felt like it was a gift from the Lord, that he held that house for us & protected us SO much during my husband's unemployment & our living situation. He knew exactly what he was doing, I don't know why that sometimes comes as a surprise me but its always a good reminder that God knows exactly what we need, when we need it. Thanks for sharing. Rejoicing with you that Preston is recovering well. :-)

Katie @decoratemylife said...

Thank you for your sweet comment on my blog.
Loved your story.. you are so right! God is good. All the time!

Patti said...

So pleased to hear that your son is recuperating...thought about him on Thanksgiving. Hopefully he will be able to catch up on his studies and finals when he is feeling better. Lovely photo of church - is it your church? Now onto December and the holiday hoopla!!

Scooper said...

Amen and Amen. I join you in thanking God for his provision and protection for Preston. I wish you and yours the merriest of Decembers!

dee said...

Yes, Amen!

Heathahlee said...

Remind me to tell you sometime about realizing God knows EXACTLY where we need to be and when. Kiddo might not be here today had I not given in to the craving of some Burger King breakfast buddies... :)

Shelia said...

Amen, little Sister, God is good all the time and He had it all worked out for your son to be just at the right place for you to take care of him. I'm glad he's getting better and I hope you can take some time for yourself too. Being a caregiver is hard work! ;) Glad to hear from you!
Blessings,
Shelia ;)

New Every Morning said...

Rejoicing with you, friend! How refreshing is your positive approach to what could be a situation that many of us would complain over! You are such a gem. Hugs to all of you and praising God for His protection.

Carmen @ Life with Sprinkles on Top said...

Praising God right there with you! I'm praying that Preston is back to his old self very soon.

FrouFrouBritches said...

God is so good! It's amazing to me that some people think things like that are coincidence. Stuff like that doesn't just happen. It's all in his plan. God is so cool!

I'm so glad Preston is home and feeling better. I'll say a prayer for him tonight. XOXO

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