Harder Family

Harder Family

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Update 9/12/23

 1 John 4:7 "Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God."

1 Thessalonians 5:11 "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as you are doing."

Romans 12:10 "Love one another with brotherly affection."

Micaela snapped a picture of Wayne sleeping as we came home from Chicago. 

Yesterday, these verses described what we experienced as a family. We watched in amazement as four men demonstrated their love for God and us by sacrificing their time to serve us. One of the hardest lessons I have learned over the years is how to be on the receiving side of giving help. It is a lot easier to be the one serving others who have a need, than to be the one with the need. It is humbling. But something Wayne said years ago stuck with me. He said, "Don't steal someone's joy in giving or serving by denying them." In other words, if someone is joyfully trying to love you through service, humble yourself and accept it because otherwise, you are stealing their joy. 

I know I have expressed it before, but I literally cannot say it enough times. I DO NOT know how anyone goes through a difficult time without Jesus and without a church family. And to be honest, we have experienced love and help from the entire body of Christ throughout the nation, not just our local church. It has been astounding. People are quick to criticize churches for all their mistakes, and there are plenty of them. I'll be the first one to admit that churches are full of sinful people who needed Jesus and still need Him every day. But that is the beauty of the gospel! Honestly though, nothing compares to the love and sacrifice that true followers of Jesus demonstrate to others. We have experienced this first hand.

After my last post, I texted someone from church to let them know about the ramp situation, since they were helping us try to figure out a solution for Wayne. Within an hour, someone stopped by the house and checked the ramp and said it would be a good fit. The next day, Saturday, it was taken apart, loaded up on a trailer, and set aside for us. By Monday, a team was put together to install the ramp in our garage. That same evening, the wheelchair we purchased from a gentleman at church was delivered right to our garage. God continues to show up in big ways.

A friend wrote me today and said, "Some days are just hard days where you trust the Lord 100%, but your tears in your eyes are fighting the battle of faith over reality." This resonated so deeply with me. The hardest days we've faced in the past few months were also a chance for me to dig my anchor deeper into the foundation of Jesus. It reminds me of Hebrews 11:6, which is also known as the 'Hall of Faith' which is a list of those who were determined to follow God. "And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must earnestly believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him."

Wayne is on day 4 of chemo tonight. This round of chemo has been knocking him down. He is tired, nauseous, and just worn out. I hate seeing what chemo does to him, so I am thankful for the last scan which showed a little improvement to make all of this worth it. 

Shan and Wayne enjoyed some football together on Sunday. Shan is a huge football fan. I love seeing them interact and enjoy something together!

Chemo is wiping Wayne out!

I am about 36 hours from my surgery. I have been trying to stay busy so that I don't have to think about it. A friend told me that before her surgery she experienced what she called "reverse nesting". I told her that is how I have felt. I have tackled projects that I have needed to do, but never get around to the last few weeks. She also told me to expect it to take more than the six weeks to feel normal. The doctor may "release" you at that point, but it will take months to fully recuperate. That was helpful to know so that if I experience exhaustion, I will know that it is normal as my body recovers. 

Another sweet friend sent me the gift of a juicer. I made my first batch of vegetable juice and quickly discovered that you need some fruit in that juice! Beets, cabbage, and kale don’t make for great tasting juice, but it did make a beautiful rainbow of colors!

The best gift I received was on Sunday morning at church. The song that God has given me over and over again as an encouragement is "Worthy of my Song" by Phil Wickham. It was the song I woke up to the morning of Wayne's MRI, it is the song I've sung out to Him when I have felt like I'm drowning with all that we are facing. Being able to sing the song at church was such a blessing. Thank you BJ for that gift! I’m going to share the song again, if you haven’t listened to it. Believe me, you will love the song!

Prayer Requests:

- Wayne as he has another day of chemo and then recovery from chemo.

- Our friend Mary is having brain surgery tomorrow for a recurrence of her cancer. Please pray for the surgeons and for a successful surgery.

- Please pray for my surgery and that if it's God's will, that the cancer is all contained.

- Pray for Wayne's dad, Roy, who is having surgery tomorrow as well. 

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