Friday, December 07, 2007

Friday Night

The doctor Katy saw today agreed that a MRI would tell us whether Katy’s pain is coming from a fracture in her back or something else. He has to set that up for next week. She has had such tremendous pain that she has not been able to recover from her trip to the doctor yet. I hope she will feel well enough tonight to sit at her computer. I’m so glad we were able to move her office into her room this past summer, since it is hard for her to walk very far. Paul also set up a little Christmas tree in her room today, and it is all lit up tonight.

We continue to ask for prayer, because we know God hears us. It is building our faith to have to wait on Him. Katy has especially struggled with the realities of HPS this week. One of the wounds on her foot opened up again and it took us a long time to get it to stop bleeding today. We are encouraged that she doesn’t suffer from those terrible muscle spasms anymore, and we do try to count our blessings, but eating is so painful that she has not had anything to eat since Wednesday evening. We were together just a few minutes ago and I heard her stomach growling for food. I asked if I could fix her some broth and she said the pain wasn’t worth it. So, I am fixing up the bathroom with candles and a space heater to make it look and feel like a spa. I have some lavender oil for soaking her feet. There is more than one way to give the soul a feast. Unless something changes in Katy’s condition overnight, I will not post tomorrow.

Paul wants to take Qavah to the little town of Buchanan on the James River for their Christmas parade tomorrow. It has been a long time since he has had a little person to ride on his shoulders. Qavah does a lot of squealing and clapping to make the effort worthwhile. Enjoy your holiday festivities this weekend, then write to tell us about them!

  1. Jes Says:

    Hey guys!
    Dawn - thank you for your honesty. It always makes it easier to know how to pray.

    We have been enjoying our Jesse tree so much this year. Yesterday, the devotion was on Moses going up to get the 10 commandments and the Mountain of fire…so we took the fire idea and ran with it. You know how kids are facinated with anything fire related….. I have a large candle that has three wicks in it. I got that out and set it on the coffee table. Then I got out 5 little tea lights and set them around the large candle. Next, I got our little jesse tree and the appropriate ornament. I lit the large candle, got a couple chocolate covered pretzels and called everyone into the family room. Josh read the devotion while the little ones munched on their pretzels. Then we talked about how God is really - God the Father, God the Son and the Holy Spirit - three in one - just like our candle. Then we talked about how we were like the tea lights - God was the light but we were all darkness in our sin. As we lit each light - we talked about how knowing Jesus puts a light in us. It was such a great family time! I don’t know how much they will remember - but things like this are great for even Josh and I to review! (And as much as I hate to admit it - they seemed to think the best part was blowing the candles out at the end!! *grin*)

    We love ya’ll and hope that tomorrow provides some relief!

  2. Paul McKenzie Says:


    I have been praying for you for some time, and have been a regular reader here, but have not posted before…

    First, THANK YOU to you and your family for sharing this struggle with all of us. Your focus day-by-day on “what really matters” helps all of us. I am inspired by it all, and look forward to reading new entries!

    Second, I missed the earlier invite to post Christmas stories, so I’ll do it here. Soon after we got married, we also picked up two kittens. As kiitens do, they invented a game of chasing each other around the house. (Some chases got pretty intense!) Well, one Chrstmas we had gotten the tree up, and were enjoying it. Suddenly, ‘the chase’ came tearing around the corner and went up into the Christmas tree! It was so funny to see the cats in the tree, and then to see them realize WHAT DID I JUST DO? They finally worked themselves out, but not before batting a few balls down.

    We will continue to pray for you and your family. May the simple joys of this season shine through the troubles we have.

    Merry Christmas!
    — Paul

  3. Doris Harriff Says:

    My heart aches for Katy and her caretakers! You are always in my prayers!
    I see a bright spot in Paul’s trip with Qavah. She must really be a day-brightener and a joy to you all!

    Love, Aunt Doris

  4. Sandy Says:

    Prayers continue from here. These are surely difficult days. I hope you are covered with a peace that passes all understanding this weekend. Take good care.

  5. Lillian Oliveira Says:

    I’ll write a story later, but what is a “Jesse” tree? Aunt Lil

  6. Heather Kirkwood Says:

    Katy, I hope the MRI finds something. Not that I want anything to be wrong, but on the other hand I’d like them to be able to find something they can fix. I also hope that you and your doctors are able to work out something regarding your nutrition. You need fuel to fight the battle.

  7. Lillian Oliveira Says:

    My last three years in Africa I taught full-time at the Medical Assistant’s School (sort of combination Physician’s Assistant and Nurse Practitioner). I taught Bible Study classes to students who were interested, and at Christmas time every year planned a Christmas Candle Light Celebration that all were happy to attend. I did it very simply: I found all the verses in the Old and New Testaments that I could find relating to Jesus - beginning perhaps with “A Light to the Gentiles…” “Arise and Shine for Your Light has Come”, and going to the Christmas Story and the Light of the World, and so on. I wrote each verse and its reference on a piece of paper, numbered in sequence. Then I handed a simple white candle and a verse to each student as they came in.

    On a long bench at the front, I put a 2 foot high and about 3 ” wide candle (the Catholics had them for prayer candles) in the middle and trimmed it with mountain cedar (which grew there) and red canna lilies, as they would be blooming at Christmas. I had the carpenter shop drill candle size holes in boards or branches, then trimmed them with evergreen as well and lined them up on either side of the of the tall candle, along the bench. At the beginning I lighted just the tall candle and and explained the symbolism of the red and green colors at Christmas, red for the blood He shed, green for everylasting life, and the light for the Light “that shines on everyone coming into the world”. I think we sang a couple of carols. Then we turned off all the electric lights left the one large candle shining. The students began coming up one up by one, lighting their candles at the big candle, reading their verse, and then placing their candle in one of the drilled holes, expanding slowly each way until all were placed and the front of the room was filled with candle light, the Christ-candle in the middle. A great reverence always seemed to descend on the large room as the little celebration progressed. The last year I was there I gave a little devotional talk about Jesus being our light, and gave an invitation for anyone who wanted to make a commitment or a re-commitment to the Light of the World Who is Jesus. The first one to quickly leap to his feet and come forward was Medard, one of the seven Seniors that I called my “Seven Princes”. A gentle, soft-spoken, intelligent young man, earnestly coming to offer himself to Jesus. I never forgot that, and when I came to learn what happened to Medard at the great Rwandan Genocide, I was so glad I remembered. His colleague and room-mate after they graduated was Louis, and about 4 years ago, Louis got my e-mail address and I asked about all my dear students. Louis said, when we heard about the killings in other places, I tried to get Medard to flee with me to Burundi. But he said, “I can’t imagine that anyone would want to murder someone like me.” He stayed. Later Louis heard about him from an eye-witness to his death. A group of the other tribe - (WARNING! this is very graphic, so don’t read it to little children )- had trapped him and a bunch of others. They had a pit and began mutilating them and throwing them in the pit alive. When they had thrown Medard in, he cried out “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing!”
    When I get to heaven, I know I am going to see Medard there. He has been celebrating Christmas with Jesus a good many years now. I hope this is inspirational rather than too saddening. My eyes still fill with tears when I remembered how Medard responded to such hatred with forgiveness. What a wonderful reward he must be having in heaven now!

    “Be faithful to death, and I will give you a Crown of Life!”

    Love, Aunt Lil

  8. Lillian Oliveira Says:

    I meant to say relating to Jesus as Light… Aunt LIl

  9. Phyllis Calhoun Says:

    Dear Campbells, I stay updated with your blog. Just went through every picture you have posted. What beautiful children! Qavah gives me so much to think about as our family ministers to the fatherless in our new church. Dawn, thanks so much for living the life in front of me. I love you and you are all in daily prayers.


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