Prayer Updates

Archive for April, 2011|Monthly archive page

He passed this sight test

In Uncategorized on April 27, 2011 at 6:20 pm

Thanks for the prayers!

Our homecare nurse came by today as well, and she weighed Henry at 7 lbs 6 oz. Shocking to her as much as us. He is gaining weight really well. In some ways, gaining weight like this is not ideal – we hope that the weight is not fluid, but is “real” gain.

We will keep you posted so you know how to pray.




In Uncategorized on April 18, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Yes – that is natural sunlight on his face. For Henry, the first of its kind. On Saturday around 2pm, Henry left his NICU corner to finally come home; 75 days later. It was a quiet affair.

Now that Henry is home, we have met a different baby. The hospital does a great job keeping preemies alive – but lacks the positive care that only a home can provide. Henry is soaking in his crib, his parents’ touch, the quiet, the soft light. He does not apparently miss the beeps, alarms, crying neighbors, & rounding doctors. So Henry is much more alive. Much more alert. And much happier.

His parents are relieved. Though we are entering a challenging new chapter in Henry’s life, it is a new chapter. So we are thankful. You can still pray for us. God seems to give new parents a reserve of adrenaline when they have new-borns. If I remember Jude’s birth correctly, this reserve lasts about 3 months. However, as you can well imagine, this reserve has already been well depleted! So we are tired. But, as one pastor says before he preaches: with the help of the Holy Spirit and Red Bull we will get through this.

We have met many dear people during our NICU stay. We cry when we think about our primary nurses. They took to our boy, when their job understandably demands hard emotional boundaries against this. We are thankful to Jesus for them. We met dear friends with a baby of their own in the NICU – our shared experiences have kept us sane & given us hope, as well as the freedom to be sad.

As I shared months ago, I have been particularly comforted by the truth of Psalm 41. God is our divine doctor – yes. But he is also our divine nurse who changes our bed & cares for us when weak. 75 days later I can say that Josie and I were as much recipients of this divine care as Henry.

Many of you have mentioned that our faith has been inspirational to you during this trying season. We are thankful for this, and can relate. I know that part of me crumbles when I see others crumble. But I would also like to make clear that it was not our faith that made us strong – it was the object of our faith: Jesus. I strongly believe that faith itself is a gift of God (“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God” – Eph 2:8); and I can honestly say that we have made it through this NICU experience because of God’s relentless mercy to us; not our relentless grip on Him, but His relentless grip on us. In this way, God is the hero in Henry’s story.

The promise of resurrection and God’s final restoration of all things. The conviction that Jesus alone is the happy ending to our hopes, dreams, aspirations, and goals for Henry. The truth that Jesus weeps with the hurting. The promise that suffering is not for naught. The integrity of these truths are proven in trials like this. Yes, our faith in these things have been strengthened these past few months – but this too was a gift to us from God. Again, God is the hero.

We will continue to post updates on this blog so you can continue to take part in Henry’s story through prayer. He has a long road ahead of checkups and therapy. But he is home. Thank you Jesus, he is home.

Thank you everyone for your encouragement and prayer. This too was a gift from God.

Joe & Josie

Passed my hearing test!

In Uncategorized on April 13, 2011 at 7:27 pm


In Uncategorized on April 11, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Hey friends,

It is hard to believe that Henry was born on January 30th. It is already raining like Spring outside.

Thanks for your prayers concerning Henry’s feeding struggles. Since I have last posted, Henry has been back and forth. He had one great day of 9 full feeds in a row, then slipped back in fatigue. But the following day he jumped back into full feeds. We were braced for a back and forth until his full gestation (April 25).

However, it appears that Henry is doing really well with his feeds for the past few days. They took the feeding tube out – to “test” him. So far it appears he is passing the test.  (!)  – that is the symbol of cautious joy. There is talk of discharge… dangerous talk of discharge.

Henry is still on small oxygen, but tomorrow they give him a day to test without it. This could be a specific prayer of yours – we covet your prayers.

We will keep you posted in these days. We are eager, but cautious; energized at the thought of his trip home; but fatigued. You know how Paul put it: those brittle and cracked, but not destroyed, vessels of clay. That’s us.

We will keep you posted.


Joe & Josie

Love goes deeper

In Uncategorized on April 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Three years ago I was sitting in a lecture. This lecturer was on a glorious tangent, speaking of his children.  He made an off-the-cuff statement that has remained with me like a coffee stain: “You will be amazed that your capacity to love will go deeper with each child you have.”

Another coffee-stain quip worth bringing up: “You will find that the people you love the most — the “I-will-take-a-bullet-for-you” kind of love — are the people who most cross your will; those that do not align with your wishes like a Stepford Wife.” Or something to that effect.

When I look down into Henry’s sterile crib; when I pray for him; when I fearfully reflect on his entry into this world; when I draw him out and safeguard him on my forearm; when I curse the cords that anchor him to the hospital wall – I think of this.

I certainly considered these truths two years ago when changing Jude’s umpteenth diaper and adjusting to his three-hour sleep cycle. However, driving to the hospital every day has taken its toll; these drives have lodged the painful truth of Henry’s helplessness into my chest. Yet, as I say, these complaints often melt in that selfsame place into a severe love.

We need to keep praying for Henry. His feeding still remains a burden. Some feedings he will take an entire bottle; others none at all. He needs to feed an entire day (8 feedings) without the help of a tube. Please consider praying specifically for this.

Thanks friends,