July 13, 2018
As we waited for the doctor to come in with the results of the MRI, my heart was pounding, and my hands were shaking. I kept taking deep breaths, trying to calm myself down. I mentally grabbed every scripture of comfort and reassurance that I could remember:
No weapon formed against her will prosper… Isaiah 54:17
I do NOT fear bad news, I trust God… Psalms 112:7
His angels will keep her in all her ways… Psalms 91:11
The Lord is my shepherd… I fear no evil, for you are with her… Psalms 23:1, 4
God holds her in his righteous right hand…Isaiah 41:10
No harm will come nigh her… Psalms 91:10
Don’t be afraid, only believe… Mark 5:36
That last verse stayed with me. I love this story found in both Mark 5 and Luke 8, and I refer to it often for reassurance when fear is encroaching:
A synagogue ruler named Jairus had a daughter who was dying. He pursued Jesus and begged him to come to heal his daughter. As Jesus is walking with Jairus to his house, a crowd gathers around him, and a woman that had a bleeding disorder for twelve years pushed her way just to touch the hem of Jesus’s clothes. And she was immediately healed in that instant (that’s a story for another blog ya’ll!)
Right after she was healed, someone tells Jairus that his daughter is dead and to no longer bother Jesus. And in that moment Jesus responds with these words, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.” The extra line in Luke 8:50 was just for me!
When I ponder this story, I believe that Jesus knew what emotions would rush over Jairus immediately after hearing the news of his daughter’s death. And Jesus in His loving and caring way immediately spoke reassurance to Jairus, beating Satan to the punch and effectively shutting his plan down.
While in that office waiting for the light tap to indicate the doctor was returning, I kept repeating the words of my Savior, “Do not be afraid, only believe….do not be afraid, only believe”. When the tap came, and he reviewed the MRI results that showed Kennedi’s PCL was torn, it felt like a punch in the gut. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
He explained that he needed to consult with the surgeon to determine if surgery was needed. An hour passed. Two hours. We were informed that the surgery in progress was running unexpectedly long and the surgeon was not available for consultation. We decided to go for a 2nd opinion from another respected orthopedic doctor while we waited. After using my husband’s connections, we were able to get a last-minute appointment.
After reviewing the MRI and examining Kennedi, that doctor felt that Kennedi showed signs of Compartment Syndrome due to her swelling and pain, and also due to a faint pulse in the injured leg. A quick Google search brought on a new wave of fear. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
We were advised to meet his colleague for another examination to determine if surgery was needed, as amputation was a serious consequence if this condition was not addressed immediately. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
As we raced to this particular surgeon’s office, he called my mobile phone and informed me that he reviewed the MRI and advised that her leg had experienced significant trauma and that he saw additional musculoskeletal injuries that would require immediate surgery. Another Google search followed. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
My husband and I discussed the tsunami of information that we had been hit with and made a decision to drive to Delaware and consult back with the original pediatric practice from our morning appointment. The surgeon was finally available and advised us to go to their ER, and he would call ahead debrief the attending orthopedic doctor. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
After being admitted in the ER, we were immediately given a room, and a dear friend met us for moral support. Additional testing showed no signs or concerns for Compartment Syndrome or musculoskeletal injury, but we were advised to see an orthopedic doctor with more experience in PCL injuries, as it was not a common pediatric injury. Kennedi was prescribed stronger pain medicine, given a new thigh-to-ankle brace, and was released from the ER – her future still unknown. “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
That same friend gave us a recommendation for another well-respected orthopedic surgeon that specialized in treating athletes, but it was now a Friday evening, and the practice did not open until Monday. We’d have to spend the weekend full of questions, concerns, and uncertainty. How could I continue to keep my mind from wandering and worrying that my biggest fear would manifest? “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
To follow Kennedi’s story, continue the next blog here.
Fear is tormenting and can keep us paralyzed, preventing us from fully trusting that God is in complete control of our situation. When fear, worry, or anxiety fight their way to the front of your consciousness, remember the story of Jairus and verbally repeat the instruction of Jesus – Do not be afraid [your name], only believe!
Feel free to share your response in the comments section…