Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Reflecting on 2011

I read this quote in a devotional I was reading yesterday, and it reminded me a lot of what this past year has looked like for me.

“Deliverance is when God brings you out of a fiery trial that was meant to destroy you. Total deliverance is when, like the three Hebrew children [Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego], He brings you out without even the smell of smoke on you. You see, it’s possible to be delivered but still be damaged.”

Delivered, but damaged. I started the year sicker than I’ve ever been in my life. I could barely walk, I was in constant pain, and I was vomiting more times than I could remember to report to Chase at the end of the day. In the last year, God has delivered me from that place (that I hope to never return to!) I’m in a new place now, where most days look totally normal. I go about life, doing things people do, and probably feel as healthy as you do. BUT, my kidneys didn’t get on board with the whole “I want to be totally healed” plan (yet?). So, slowly but surely, they continue to get a little bit worse.

Ironically, I was reading “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan last night and read this:

“On the average day, we live caught up in ourselves. On the average day, we don’t consider God very much. On the average day, we forget that our life truly is a vapor. But there is nothing normal about today. Just think about everything that must function properly just for you to survive. For example, your kidneys. The only people who really think about their kidneys are people whose kidneys don’t work correctly.”

True statement. I didn’t really know anything about kidneys a little over a year ago, let alone actually think about what my kidneys were doing each day. I also took life for granted, thinking (without actually thinking) that I would live forever. This year, though, I’m thankful I didn’t have that option. The vulnerability of life became real. In a way I’ve never experienced Him before, God became real.

I can’t believe it’s been a year already. A year ago today, I was leaving the hospital (quite joyfully), without a clue of what the rest of the year would hold.  Well, here were some of the things it did include:

- 18 days in the hospital (3 different visits) SAM_0863

- Almost 6,000 pills takenIMG_8569

- 20 doctors appointments with these guys


- At least 5 pounds gained in the face, although thankfully at least 4 of them have been lost by now (I didn’t include a picture of this one for my benefit)

- And somewhere between 75-100 throw-up sessions (I didn’t include a picture of this one for your benefit)

It’s been a crazy year, but God has been faithful. He has brought me from death to life. He has shown me true community, how He created it to be. He has turned our marriage vows from just a promise to a fulfillment of that promise. He has provided strength when I have had none, and peace when it seemed impossible. He has given me the ability to trust him, to be confident in the knowledge that my future is in His hands.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.           1 Peter 1:3


  1. Oh, Julie, I'm so sorry that you had to go through all of that, and sorry that it's not over. I will be praying for your kidneys! You are way too young to have the physical problems that you've had to face in the last year.

    I've become more aware in the last year to just simply trust Him day by day through my own health problems, and through my mom's declining health and then her going home to be with the Lord. He is faithful! Take it one day at a time.

    Love you,


  2. Oh so sweet, Julie! God is ever faithful!!

  3. Julie, you are such a blessing! You will never know how many hearts you've touched with your blog. God is always faithful, and even though we don't understand His timing or His plan sometimes, you are a wonderful example of trusting that He is there with you to walk your path with you, and carry you whenever it's needed. I pray for continued and ever strengthening trust and faith for you, and of course for healing for those "stubborn kidneys". Love,Mom

  4. Julie,
    I am so thankful for what you have learned through your journey and what you have been able to show others through your journey. May God continue to bless you guys this year! See you soon!
    Teri B.


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