Grateful to Be at Home

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When our children were little, we enjoyed the traditional action song, “Let’s Go on a Bear Hunt.” In our version, we sang, “Isn’t it great to be back home!” after swishing through tall grass, going through a gate, and climbing a tree, etc. That’s how Ray and I felt around 6:00 p.m. last night. It was great to be back home with our just-in-case suitcase still unopened.

Ray had a cardiac catheterization and a transesophageal echocardiogram yesterday. The procedures went well. His arteries look great, but he has a very leaky mitral valve. Valve repair is not an emergency but it does need to be done in the next few months. Unfortunately the tests did not reveal the reason for his continuing cough, so we need to get at the root of that problem before the surgery. Coughs and recovering from heart surgery are not a good combination.

I won’t embarrass Ray with a picture the day after his procedures, but here is one from January 29.

The next step is to try another round of antibiotics (for two weeks this time) and pray that God will use the antibiotic to cure his cough. The cardiologist has also prescribed heart medications. This is a big change for Ray. At age 70, he was only taking one prescription; now he is taking four more plus the antibiotic. We hope this will be short term. We were delighted that Ray was cleared to return to our fitness program. Life should be pretty normal for us until the surgery and much better for Ray after he recovers.

Praise God for surrounding us with His love and for taking such good care of Ray. Praise Him that our bodies are fearfully and wonderfully made. Praise Him, too, for making people in His image so that some of them can figure out things to do about problems like these. Praise Him for our cardiologist who held hands with us in a circle and prayed for Ray before he left for his procedures.

For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks to You,
for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
Psalm 139:13-14

Thank you so much for your prayers. I was so busy and exhausted yesterday, while enjoying being with our two daughters, that I didn’t have a chance to respond to your kind assurances of prayer and your sweet encouragements. I did read them though, and they were a great comfort.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 
who comforts us in all our affliction
so that we will be able to comfort those
who are in any affliction
with the comfort with which we ourselves
are comforted by God.
1 Corinthians 1:3-4

Later today, you can click here to find today’s dose of Winter Cheer. The webpage has all of the Winter Cheer videos with the most recent ones nearest the top of the page.

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  1. Charlene, I’m so glad that Ray’s tests were successful in finding out what he most needs to heal, but I’m sorry that he has a leaky mitrial valve. We will be praying for him and you as you guys move forward toward his surgery, and also that his cough will either go away on its own, or be something as simple as possible to treat. I’m sure you both must feel very tired right now, I’m praying for renewed strength and stamina for you!

    Blessings in Him,

    -Christina Seifert

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