Ruth was becoming more and more listless, not eating, calling things like scrambled eggs noodles, not remembering very important things, and finally not remembering how to put on her pantyhose when getting dressed. We were able to get an appointment with her Primary Care Doctor on December 30th at which time he immediately set her to the Emergency Room. After the triage nurse spoke with her for just a few minutes she was quickly taken back and given a CT scan of her head. The Emergency Room Doctor saw a mass on her brain and quickly transferred her to another facility with an excellent Neurosurgery team. After examination of the Emergency Room CT scan and a more in depth scan the Neurosurgery Department Head scheduled emergency surgery for New Year’s Day. The surgery to remove the brain tumor was successful with the entire tumor being removed however the biopsy of the tumor was sent to pathology for analysis. The analysis found that the tumor was metastasized, meaning that the origin of the tumor was not the brain but from another organ. I learned that most brain tumors do not originate in the brain but from cancer cells from other parts of the body. After analysis the diagnosis was that Ruth had stage 4 (there are only 4 stages of cancer) lung cancer.
After her diagnosis Ruth and I together decided to share her journey with cancer on Facebook and on the Faith The Evidence Blog that I write. Our decision to share was not to elicit pity or to express fear and remorse but to exhibit our trust and faith in God. Our prayer was for Ruth’s complete healing, and that’s what we asked in our prayer, but we also told God that we wanted His will to be done in Ruth’s life. Ruth wanted to share her story to help others who were going through trying times so that they would know that God is in control even when things don’t look great. It may be an illness, a financial crisis, trouble in a marriage, a breakup of a personal relationship, loss of a job, any situation that causes stress and anxiety. Ruth went to be with the Lord on January 24, 2015 leaving hundreds of friends and family whose lives she impacted with the love of God that He placed in her.
This post, which is all of the Facebook status updates from the time of Ruth’s diagnosis until her Memorial and Celebration of Life, is the first post in the blog series Ruth’s Journey. The status updates are exactly as they appeared on Facebook including any typos and poor grammar. Ruth and I pray that you are blessed by it.
To my FB friends and family I ask your prayers for my wife Ruth who has been diagnosed with lung cancer. We don't know a whole lot yet but we do know that we need you to join with us in prayer that God's will be done. I ask that you pray for her healing but only in accordance with God's will. I ask that you pray that God will give her medical team wisdom and that He place the most expert physicians on that team. I also ask that you pray for me so that I can be the caregiver that God has ordained me to be. In all this and most of all pray that God get the glory for all of this. As I have been teaching and preaching for the past year " And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." God's purpose is that we become conformed to the image of His Son so all these things He is working so that we look more like Jesus. You have to either believe God or not and I choose to believe Him. God bless you and thank you for your prayers. I'll keep you posted.
Ruth continues to improve from the brain surgery and is becoming more alert and able to comprehend a little better. Continue praying that she recovers quickly so that treatment can start for the lung cancer. That is if God doesn't miraculous heal her first and you know that he can. Her medical team is fantastic. Continue to pray for them too. God is really good.
Ruth continues to improve. In a great deal of pain because they want her more aware so that they follow improvement. I see a great deal of improvement daily. Tomorrow she will probably be transferred to a rehab facility so today I ask that you agree with me that the transfer is to the 5 star facilty in the Kaiser network that is near the hospital and not far from our home.
Another day of marked improvement for Ruth. Less disoriented, less confused, more aware. Still in lots of pain but they are able to give her a little something so that she can get some rest which is so important in the healing process. It looks like they will transfer her tomorrow to a nursing home for a few days. Thank you for all the prayers we know that God hears and answers them. Keep praying for her and her medical team. God bless you.
Great improvement today. Ruth is very aware and able to respond quickly and appropriatly to most things today. The big deal today is pain. Most of you know that Ruth has a chronic back issue. It's so bad that she has an medical device implanted in her hip that provides relief when she needs it. Well she has been in a bed flat on her back since last Wednesday and the device has discharged and when completly discharged it takes hours to recharge even under optimal conditions abd a hospital is not optimal. I told you that so that you will have an idea of what is happening now. Ruth is in tremendous pain. Most of it from the back add to that head pain from the surgery and she has a bladder infection. So have to get the pain under control. So that 5 star nursing home looks like it is the hospital and I say that is the answer to that prayer. I have already started negotiating with the doctors to send her home rather than a nursing home especially now that she is no longer confused or disoriented so join me in prayer for this. God is moving. One other thing she already has appointments with Radiation Therapy and Oncology. Praise God with us.
Here with Ruth. She continues to improve. Doing little things that she couldn't or wouldn't do a day or two ago. In my post yesterday I told you that she was in lots of pain. She is much more comfortable today. She needs to be able to rest to help in the healing process. God contniues to show His grace, mercy, love and power in and through Ruth. She still has a ways to go but I can see improvement everyday, some days big progress, other days little progress but still progress. I'm praying that whenever the doctors say she is ready to leave the acute care hospital it is home. Thank you for continuing to pray for God's will to be done. Remember that God is great and greatly to be praised.
Here with Ruth. This is the best day yet since her surgery. She is bright eyed and alert, watching the Broncos and Colts and asking for a pizza :) She can't have the pizza of course since they are giving her steroids and they have to watch the carbs. Maybe in a couple of days. The mittens are off her hands so they are not worried about her pulling at stuff. I saw her Neurosurgeon's PA when I got here and she says that Ruth is fine neurologically. She has a little abdominal discomfort so she had an ultrasound. No results yet. She has a bladder infection so it could be from that. She thinks that they will still recommend a few days in a rehab facility (that is their code word for a convalescent hospital). I feel a little better about that now that medically she is stable and what she needs is someone to get her up and moving. We may also have connections at places where there is someone in corporate who can be an advocate. I'll know tomorrow. All in all it is a great day. Keep praying!!!!!
Another good day for Ruth. Contuining to improve. I think she is starting to remember things that she was suppose to do earlier. A few minutes ago she told me that she needed to get up to make a phone call. Maybe it was because she spoke with a couple of people on the phone today. She also asked me if she can go home today. I had to tell her no but that we are working on it. Her case manager says that there are no beds available at the rehab facilities that Kaizer uses. Let's continue to pray that God's will be done. It will anyway but I want us to be in agreement with it.
I had planned to write the second post in "When the Faith Rubber Meets the Road" today but I'm beat. It's been a stress filled past 13 days. I'm going to try to get a full nights sleep tonight. I've said that before but I'm going to really try tonight. I'll write and post it tomorrow. If you see it early tomorrow you'll know I failed in my quest for 8 hours of zzzzzzzz's
Today was not a good day. I have already spoken to some of you. We learned today that the cancer has now involved Ruth's liver so her lung cancer metastasized in both the brain (that tumor was removed) but she has a mass in her lungs and now her liver. So as it was explained to me what is happening is the cancer is in Ruth's blood system and tumor can occur throughout her body. At this point there are no surgical options and the doctors told us that there is no medical cure. Well we know that God can heal and nothing is impossible for Him but remember that we asked that as you pray for Ruth's healing you pray that God's will be done in her life. She wants to fight this and we will. We are now on war footing and we know whose army we are in. Meanwhile pray that she is comfortable as we get her ready for whatever treatment that are planned probably starting with chemo when she is strong enough from her recent brain surgery. When I started these post I promised to tell it all. We want Ruth's experience and life to be a testimony and example of the goodness of God. We love you. I'll keep the posts going until victory is achieved. I'll post the link to the next "When the Faith Rubber Meets the Road" in the next couple of days.
Today was a better day even though Ruth was more than little agitated and tired. I say that because she was more able to articulate these feelings than she has been. It was apparent that she has not been resting well. Some if it is pain but I think there is another reason. Since her surgery on the 1st Ruth has not been given medication that she has taken for years to control her moods swings. Given the tragedies that she has endured throughout her life she has need them to keep herself on an even keel and be able to rest. They had to stop them after the brain surgery in order to monitor her progress. I spoke with her medical team about this today and the fact that she was really complaining that she needs to rest. She also exhibited some anxiety when there were several people in the room today and they did take notice. They are starting those meds tonight and we'll see how she is in the morning. If all goes well they may try transferring her to a skilled rehab facility to start more intense PT. That's important because as we prepare for this war she needs to get stronger before they start any treatments. When I kept reminding her that she needs to eat and work with PT, after about the 3rd time today she said DON PLEASE (in other words please stop reminding me over and over and over). She didn't do that the past couple of days which shows me that she is more aware of what's going on. She was tired of me reminding her and she was agitated because of little rest. Those were good signs for me. Continue to pray that she gets stronger quicker so that whatever treatments that the docs recommend, or that God wants her to have, can start sooner. She already has appointments in place so pray that we can keep them. Also thank God for the daily progress even in the face of what may appear to be bad news. As I said yesterday don't focus on the situation or circumstance focus on God because He is bigger that they are.
Today was a mixed day. Some good some not so good. Good things first. Yesterday I said that the medical team was going to gradually start giving Ruth the medications that she has taken for years to control her anxiety and depression. They did start them last night by giving a much reduced amount of one medication. The result was that Ruth slept through the night for the first time since surgery. I thought is was great and she looked well rested and great to me. Problem was the it was too restful for her neurosurgeon. She was still sleep when he saw her this morning. His concern is that to continue healing from the brain surgery she doesn't need the deep sleep she got last night. So he ordered it stopped and ordered one benadryl tonight to relax her so she can sleep. She is more alert and aware and can follow everything that you say to her and can respond appropriately, if she want to. She talked a little bit more though not a lot. When I asked how to spell pineapple today (because I didn't remember how) she was able to do it. The other day I asked her how to spell neurosurgery and she was able to do that too. A couple of people from PT came by today and were able to get her to do a couple of exercises, sit up on the side of the bed and get up and stand with the walker. She did not walk today because she is still too weak and unstable but that's progress that must continue if she is to get strong enough for treatment. She knows this and is trying. They are still trying to find a bed at a skilled rehab facility but it's not happening. I believe that it's not because God has her exactly where he wants her and until He says that it is time to transfer her she will be in the acute care hospital and she will go where He wants her to go. If she had been transferred at the time that they wanted to do it last week it is very likely that they would not have discovered the liver involvement as soon as the did and at this stage time is critical. Now the bad. Just before I left today Ruth was in a lot of pain in her abdomen. She had not complained of pain from the time that I got there early this morning until this afternoon. The nurse gave her some pain medication (still no narcotics thank God the pain is not that bad) and after a while she settled down and I was able to leave and come home. I called back later and she was sleep so the medication worked. That was the worst part of the day for me. Seeing her in great pain and being unable to do anything about it other than to pray for her. It was very difficult for me to sit through that. Ruth and I thank you for your prayers and concern. We love you and we will continue to share with you. As I promised we will share the victories and the setbacks so that we can all rejoice when we see the manifestation of God's will.
Good day today and a day to really see God working. Ruth told me that she slept well and was not in any pain this morning. I noticed that she hadn't eaten her breakfast yet so I tried to get her to eat. She has not been eating as much as she needs to in order to regain her strength and I keep telling her that but it's a chore getting her to eat. In doing so I find that she continues to improve in awareness and becoming more like her old self. Those of you that know Ruth know that she is not a morning person and that she is very stubborn so just imagine me trying to get her to eat before 9 am when she doesn't want to eat that hospital food. You guessed it :). But we have to keep pushing and as I told her today everybody there wants to help her but she needs to help us help her. She says that she understands and I know that she does. She was able to speak with a couple of people by phone today and they both can see improvement. She even worked with PT today more than yesterday without as much pain. That may mean that they are doing a better job pain management. As we know God is always in control and what is going on with Ruth is a perfect example. The hospital has been trying to find a bed at one of their contracted skilled rehab facilities for at least 10 days. There have been none for various reasons. If she had been transferred when the initially wanted it to happen it is very likely we would not have know that the cancer has moved to the liver so God kept her there and it was discovered. I have mentioned that to members of the medical staff. Now there were all ready to transfer her today so that she can start rehab outside the acute care hospital. Well God has other plans. The discharge coordinator left work early today so there was nobody there to work the transfer. So let's just let God do His thing. It is obvious that He wants her where she is for the time being. When God wants her moved He will decide when and where so let's let Him do it. God is great and greatly be praised.
Quite day today. Ruth continues to improve getting more and more alert. We talked more about her recovery and what she needs to do to get stronger before more intensive treatments can start. She understands. She still is not eating enough and it is like pulling teeth to get her to eat more than a couple of bites. It was a struggle to get her to eat more today. I got her to promise to eat more tonight we'll see. She did talk with one of her nieces and one of her nephews today. My prayer request today for her is that she starts to eat more so that she gets stronger. Let's pray that God makes her hungry :) Oh one last thing she wants to watch the football games tomorrow. No perdictions from her.
Watched the second half of the Packers, Seahawks game with Ruth. She slept through most of it. She is looking better everyday. Her nurse told me that she ate better today and that her sugar was still a little low but better than yesterday. I again reminded her that she needs to eat so that she gets stronger and again I could see that she was getting ready to get agitated so I had to remind her again of her decision to fight. No complants of pain today while I was there. She asked me if she was going home today and she was very disappointed when I said no. I did tell her that she may be going to a skilled rehab facility or home tomorrow but it is really the Lord who is orchestrating this. She did tell me that she is tired. Not tired of the pain but of being in the same room and bed. I asked if she would rather go to a rehab facility or home and she said a rehab facility, which I think was the really best answer, at the time, which shows the improvement in her ability to reason. I was chastised, by friends today, for not getting enough rest. The told me that I look tired so I only stayed at the hospital about 1 1/2 hours. Tomorrow should be a very interesting day. I plan on spending a lot of time getting more specific information about Ruth's cancer and in talking to others who have waged this same war.
Happy MLK Day. Well today the Lord placed Ruth in a skilled nursing facility for a period of rehabilitation. He did it in His time and His way. I took a tour of the place before she was transferred and I'm pleased. There is no nursing home smell (you know what I mean) anywhere in the facility. It is super clean and has a patio for when Ruth is able to get outside and get some of that California sun. She is happy to be out of the acute care hospital and I pray that a change of scenery will increase her appetite and encourage her to get up and move. The goal of this time is for her to get stronger so she needs to get some physical therapy. The facility has a nice PT room with some very nice equipment. One other thing that I think is a little unusual for a nursing home is that the medical director is actually in the hospital 3 times a week. In fact she will be there tomorrow and I will be there bright and early to meet her. The staff seems very nice and even told me that they need my help in helping Ruth. I told them that they will see a lot of me :) Ruth did eat a little more tonight and tonight I did not feed her. I put the food on the spoon and gave it to her and she did the rest. That's the first time that's happened since her surgery. I told her that I was not going to feed her or force her to eat she needed to do it herself and she did. Not enough but she fed herself. So continue to pray with us that God increases her appetite and gives her energy for PT. She and I asked that in our prayer tonight and we ask that you agree with us.
As with most days on this journey there is some good and some bad. First the bad news and then the good which should mitigate the bad. Because Ruth was in bed most of the time at the acute care hospital with their PT group unable to really get her up and moving Ruth now has pneumonia, which was discovered when she arrived at the skilled nursing facility. They have started treatment for it. She is not coughing or having any breathing problems. The good is that this place aggressively moving on putting a Occupational and Physical Therapy plan together. Both groups did assessments today and should start their programs tomorrow. We met one of the doctors today, who are there at least three times each week, and she is very thorough and concerned with all of her patients. She is easy to talk to and very forthcoming. I also was able to convince, along with the speech therapist to change her diet to something other than the bland pureed stuff that she was getting and refusing to eat. She is now getting a more blended diet and with much coaxing (I told her that if she didn't eat more tonight that we were going to have a fight in her room) she ate pretty good including almost all of her cup of orange sherbet. I am going to take her a hamburger tomorrow (shhhhh). The doc says that the stay should be at most two weeks and if Ruth shows improvement in her ability to function physically she may get discharged sooner. I am also pushing to get her started back, safely, on the medications that she was taking before surgery that will help with her mental state. She has lots of appointments coming up and needs to be stronger both physically and psychologically. So all in all the good outweighed the bad today. God is still in control.
Early post because it's going to be an early night. We have 2 appointments tomorrow, one of them planned as the first radiation therapy treatment. Then we have a neurosurgery follow up on Friday and an oncology consult on Monday. Today was and is a very good day. I was at the rehab facility mid-morning and Ruth looked the best she has looked since surgery. That tells me that she was able to rest well last night. She talked more today, even initiating conversation. She had what I thought was the best telephone conversation that she has been able to have. I no longer need to hold the phone for her. I was not there for breakfast but I was told by the person that helped and encouraged her to eat that she ate 40 to 60 percent of the meal including a ll the oatmeal. I wasn't there for lunch and won't be for dinner but I'm believing that she continues to eat more. She is back to a more normal diet with no sugar restrictions. I spoke with PT and they said that they were able to work with her today. She still needs maximum assistance but she is slowly improving. I have not talked to Occupational Therapy today. She wanted me to help her sit up on the side of the bed this morning but after helping her up for a few seconds, we thought better about it deciding to let the experts do it :) We are going to try to get her in our car from a wheelchair then out into the wheelchair for her appointments. They are reserving transportation just in case :). Pray that all goes well tomorrow. God is great and greatly to be praised.
Exhausting day for both of us, in fact Ruth fell asleep less than an hour after getting back to the rehab facility after only one appointment today. She was just too tired and weak to hang around and wait for 2 hours before the next appointment which would have lasted another couple of hours. So we rescheduled for next week. We did have the consult for radiation therapy which will start next Wednesday. The procedures will be to the brain to make sure there are no residual cancer cells left from the tumor. There will be five of them on consecutive days broken up only by the weekend so she will have sessions Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday. She also has a neurosurgery follow up tomorrow and another oncology appointment on Monday so she needs to somehow get stronger. Not for the radiation but just the physical activity which is more than she has had in a very long time. The good thing about today, even though she was too tired to do both appointments, is that she was up and out of the bed from about 9 am until 1 pm that is longer than she has been out of the bed in all the days since her surgery combined so I guess she has a reason to be tired. The rehab facility is going to train me on getting Ruth from a wheelchair into the car and back. We tried this morning but she was just too weak and tired so they had to call for non-emergency medical transport. That is a story in itself to make it very brief it cost $75 for a 3 block trip to her appointment and when we were finished we had to wait for an hour after calling them. When I got back to the facility I told them that somehow we are going to get Ruth to her appointment tomorrow without using their contracted transportation group if I have to start early and push Ruth in a wheelchair to the appointment or put her over my shoulder and carry her. I think that $75 for a 3 block trip in a specially equipped van (meaning they had a lift) is a rip off but to pay $75 and still wait for an hour is too much. Well so much for my rant. I'm tired. I'll talk to you tomorrow.
As usual God has worked it out. There is no appointment for tomorrow because what they would have done in the nuro follow up they have already done. I also remembered that Ruth had CityRide which is a program to provide transportation at a significantly reduced rate for seniors and the disabled. They provide the kind of transportation that we had to pay $75 for today. Ruth has a balance of $182 and that's what we will use for her future appointments until I'm trained in the wheelchair to car procedure. God is awesome.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV) 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. The last 10 days have been a whirlwind with a lot of good and some not so good but there is progress everyday and we are capturing ground everyday in this war against cancer. I'm encouraged by every little thing and can find some good even in things that look like setbacks. Here is Mile 3 of our journey. Come with us on this journey and pray that God's will be done in Ruth. Please share with your friends.
I just posted the link to my blog post "When the Faith Rubber Meets the Road - Mile 3". In it you will learn that Ruth is back in the hospital with pneumonia. It sounds like a downer and it is but as always with God there is a blessing. I just spoke with the ER nurse and they are going to admit her but she is much better than when she was taken to the ER this morning. She is at the hospital where she was for surgery on the 1st until this past Monday. She is alert and still getting better in terms of communicating. One last thing. I believe that it's God's plan to have her discharged home rather than back to a rehab facility. Let's just wait and see what the Lord has in store for His daughter.
I'm with Ruth right now and I just had to post something that just happened. The respiratory therapist came in and introduced himself "I'm Mark from respiratory" Ruth's response "Hi Mark from respiratory :). She's back lol.
Here with Ruth now. Her condition worsened last night and she is in critical condtion. She does hane pneumonia and with lungs compromised by cancer it is very serious. She is having a great deal breathing and they are giving her oxygen? Rapid breathing also increases the heart rate so they are concerned about the heart as well but no heart attack. The doctors are working very hard tweaking the antibiotics for the pneumonia. We have decided not to put her on a respirator, if it comes to that, because with the condition of her lungs because of the cancer she will never come off of it. What I ask that you pray for is that she becomes stable with treatment for the pneumonia and she can come home under palliative care. Palliative care is is specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. It focuses on providing patients with relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family. As I have said all along during this journey, and it's not over yet, God's will is what we want and pray for in Ruth's life.
God's will has been done in Ruth's life. My wife of 43 years transitioned today at about 3:50 pm today. She is now with the Lord. Thank all of you for your prayers. Please know that Ruth and I love all of you. Rejoice with me that Ruth is now with the Lord and is a peace, no pain, no worries, no cares. I was with her when she transitioned. It was peaceful, there was no pain or struggle, she just stopped breathing. I was able to tell her that I love her and she was able, through the oxygen mask, to tell me that she loves me. We had some great times together and that is what I will remember and I want you to remember the times that she made you laugh, or got on your case. God bless you.
I haven't posted before now because I could not think of the words to express how much I appreciate your comments of encouragement, and condolences on Ruth's transition. I still can't think of the words so I'm going to do the best that I can. Ruth would be so very humbled as am I for the show of love for her. It was her hope that our sharing would help someone else. I can't express how much I loved her but I also know that you love her too and God wanted me to share her and her story. Those of you who had the opportunity to meet and spend any time at all with Ruth know how much she loved you. The love that she had for people was instant and you knew it right away and I know that God used her to show His love for you through her. That kind of love never ends you will always feel it. I always knew that I would miss her but I you have no idea how much. God is able to and is comforting me but I do miss her and I'm not ashamed to say it here. There is a void that will never be filled. I will be able to grieve and get through all of that and I'll be able to move on but the Ruth hole will always be there.
Many years ago Ruth made me promise her that when she transitioned that I would not put her in a coffin and put her in the ground. She didn't like to be closed up anywhere. I am going to keep that promise. We will have a Memorial Service in the next few weeks and I'll announce it. For those of you who are not able to attend I will figure out a way to get you a copy of the program if you want one. I'll keep you posted. I will close with this same scripture that I used for my blog post a couple of weeks ago Jeremiah 29:11 (NKJV) For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
God Bless you
It's been one week now since Ruth went to be with the Lord. I've cried several times, most often when I think of those last minutes with her and when I tell others about it. It's not because it was a sad time but because it was such a beautiful time and one that I'll always remember. It's amazing how much I miss her and I can't come close to describing it. Only those who have lost a very close friend, parent, child, or spouse can really understand. When you spend everyday with someone, or if not physically there with them, talking to them everyday it's hard not to be able to see or talk to them. So I do talk to Ruth and I ask her to help me figure out things like what to with this program for her memorial service which will be on Valentines Day :) I thought about stopping my posts about Ruth and me and going back the stuff I posted before she got really ill but I can't do it so bear with me until I get it all out and that may be a long time. I hope to get back to writing my regular blog in a few days and I'll post the links here. As I said before I can't find the words to express how much I appreciate your comments of encouragement. I love you.
Thank you for the encouraging words Laura but I do not have any pain. I have sorrow and I am grieving but there is no pain. It's hard to explain but there is a scripture in Philippians "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. I now know what Paul was saying." Although I miss Ruth more than I could every describe I have the peace of God along with the memories of my time with Ruth, the love of my life.
Happy Super Bowl Sunday. Good game so far, let's hope it continues. A friend reached out to check on me a little while ago and since today is Super Bowl Sunday assumed that I am watching the game. It gave me an opportunity to tell her about Ruth's and my Super Bowl Sunday tradition. I want to share it with you.
Ruth was a big NFL fan so our Super Bowl tradition was for just the two of us to watch the game at home so we could concentrate on the game. So that's what I'm doing today. Ruth is not here physically and I know where she is but it's still like watching with her.
By the way she was not a Patriots fan, and I am, so she would be up and cheering in my face after the Seattle interception and touchdown. :)
The past few days some very good friends and I have been working on the program for Ruth's Memorial Service. We've almost got it together and ready for the printer. The hardest part for me is picking out and deciding what pictures to put in it. I found a beautiful baby picture, a black and white picture from I don't know when or where, but you would know her anywhere by those big dimples, there's one of two skinny people that looked like us when we married (I included it in one of my blog posts), there are some with family members, and several with Ruth alone. Ruth had stunning beauty and it was very hard selecting just a few. As I am cleaning up gathering all her things I am finding pictures everywhere. In the bottom of drawers, photo albums that I didn't know existed. Lots of pictures of Ruth but many many more of family members throughout the years. One of the projects that I will take on later is to put them all together in some kind of keepsake. Don't worry guys I haven't found any that are too embarrassing........yet :). I said it before and I'll say it again Ruth was an amazing woman with tremendous strength. She taught me a lot about living with physical and emotional pain and praising God while doing it. It wasn't easy but she did it. Now that battle is over and I say she won because she has done what Paul wrote to Timothy "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. "
I can not think of a better way to spend Valentine's Day than celebrating the life of a woman that I loved very much.
The Homegoing Memorial Services for our beloved Deaconess Ruth Jacobs, will be held at CDG on Saturday, February 14, 2015 at 11am. The repast will immediately follow in CDG's Fellowship Hall. The address is 1518 S. Gramercy Place, Los Angeles, CA 90019. Please contact Donald E. Jacobs Jr. with any questions.
Yucky day today. Not a bad day or a sad day just a yucky day. It was hard to get motivated. I'm guessing that I will go through these kinds of days for a while. There were some noteworthy things in the last couple of days though. A friend of mine wants to write a book about how Ruth's journey this past month has impacted her and probably many many others. It will not be what you expect and I won't talk anymore about it you will just have to wait. I won't tell you who the friend is either :)Another noteworthy thing, my brother and his partner bought Ruth's urn. Remember I told you that Ruth made me promise to not put her in a coffin or put her in the ground. Well the urn came yesterday. I'll post pictures later. I'll just tell you that it is beautiful. I took the urn to the mortuary today and they placed Ruth's remains in it and I have them with me. Ruth and I never got the opportunity to talk about what to do with them other than to have them with me. I do know that she would not want them spread out over water, land, or anywhere. I do know that much. I will pray and wait for the Holy Spirit to lead me in that decision but for now and for the foreseeable future Ruth's remains will be with me. Like with a lot of things that I have been thinking about and decisions that need to be made I stop and think about what Ruth would do or what she would suggest. She was the one behind most of the family decisions anyway, although I wouldn't tell her that :) I would ask her opinion, and then later on suggest that we do what she said in the first place :)
The final draft, at least I hope it's the final draft, of the Memorial Service Program is done and being proof read again tonight. My plan is to get it to the printer tomorrow. Wow I didn't mean to tell you guys all this tonight but I promised to tell you everything until the Holy Spirit tells me to stop.
Great day today. Relaxed most of the day but did get the final draft to the printer and just got the proof back. It looks great. I will give it a good read tomorrow and I have asked some friends to proof it for me as well. I think you are going to really like it when it's finished. Those of you that attend the Memorial Service will get one of course. There are a few people who have asked that I send one to them. After the Service I will post a link on my website and you will be able to download a copy. Just a few more things to do and we'll be ready for next Saturday's celebration.
I waited to post this because every time I think about it I would tear up. I have written about the impact that Ruth had on the lives of so many people. I was talking about adults. I wasn't thinking about all the children, many of whom are now adults, Ruth loved and who loved her. That was brought home to me big time today. We have a Children's Church that is led by two wonderful women with help from a couple of great young women. Today after service one of the young men gave me something that was tied with the ties you sometime find on loaves of bread and he said we all want to give you this. On top was what you see at the top of this picture. When I took the ties off and opened it the tears started to flow. The next things that I saw were these 6 hearts to Ruth. I don't even know how to describe how much this means. It is just another testament how Ruth allowed the love of God to flow through her to everyone she touched.
This is the cover of the program for Ruth's Memorial Service today. It was an awesome and beautiful service, a true celebration of the life of a beautiful woman full of the love of God which she poured out on all that she met. The church was full of family and friends and the word of God was proclaimed. Although there was sadness there was no sorrow because we know that Ruth is with the Lord and we will always remember the depth of her love for all people. We sang , we shed some tears, we laughed, we rejoiced, we celebrated. Ruth would be so pleased. I can see that big beautiful smile and that twinkle in her eyes right now. This was our Valentine's Day gift. I'm sure that you will be seeing lots of pictures over the next few days. It was a wonderful day!!!
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Donald Jacobs is an ordained minister with the spiritual gift of teaching. He is the Associate Pastor of a non-denominational church in Los Angeles, CA.