Monday, July 29, 2013

In Everything, Give Thanks...

We were eating breakfast yesterday...
We were in a hurry to finish eating so that we could get to church when my girl suddenly said, "Guys, I'm not kidding... I can't see fully from this one eye."

At first, I really thought she was joking but the look of seriousness on her face told me she indeed wasn't.

My first reaction was to get into panic mode. Do we call 9-1-1-? If not, where do we go? What do we do? All these questions raced through my head... but I didn't know where to start. As I rushed upstairs to get changed, I prayed: "God, please help us. Please give me wisdom."

As many of you know, I count grace-gifts...
Friends, I can tell you this right now... the very thing that got me through yesterday was exactly that --- giving thanks as I counted grace-gifts all. day. long. It was an extremely scary few hours... the not knowing, the what-ifs, the fear... yet God's peace was so evident, so ever-present, so comforting! It made me think how in the world others can manage to go through life without God...

I gave thanks to God for a brother-in-law who is a doctor. He was the very first one we phoned. He talked me through the different possible diagnosis and told us to go directly to SickKids Hospital where we would get top-notch help.

SickKids is Canada's most research-intensive hospital and the largest centre dedicated to improving children's health in the country. I gave thanks to God that it is a mere 30-minute drive from our house on a Sunday morning with no traffic.

I gave thanks to God for a church family who not only covers us with prayers but also covers for our roles in times like these. Yesterday, hubby was on the Set-Up Team. I was on the Welcome Team. And, my girl was on the Worship Team, plus helping out in Children's Ministry.

I gave thanks to God for our extended family who immediately covered us with prayers, sending us text messages of Bible verses, comforting us with God's words.

As we were driving down to SickKids, this is what I wrote on Facebook:

... because these verses from 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 kept coming to mind:
... pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
As we drove, my girl reported that her vision was slowly coming back. I breathed a sigh of relief and I gave thanks to God for His healing touch. By the time we reached SickKids, her vision went from a half-circle being grey to a pie-shaped grey area to just a small grey circle in one corner of her eye.

We got downtown in record time, without even speeding! ;)
I gave thanks to God for getting us down there fast! SickKids is a very busy hospital. As we've never been there before, my brother-in-law warned us to prepare to stay and wait for the whole entire day!

Imagine my surprise when I saw just two families in line before us at the ER! I gave thanks to God for a quiet and not-so-busy ER. One nurse we talked to even remarked that it is quite strange for it to be so quiet. A friend from church who works at SickKids also said to me afterwards that it is quite rare to find the ER not buzzing with lots and lots of people.  

I gave thanks to God when we were seen by the triage nurse right away as my girl's chart was marked "Urgent"... thankful that there weren't many other urgent cases in front of us.

Within an hour of arriving at SickKids, we were in a hospital room and have been seen by a doctor! Base on our past ER experiences, this is unheard of! Even when my boy ingested some peanuts and was at-risk of an anaphylactic reaction, we weren't seen by a doctor until two hours after arriving at the ER. I gave thanks to God for how fast we were seen by a doctor yesterday!

At SickKids.

I gave thanks to God as the doctor assured us that they have basically ruled out any neurological causes at this point and since her vision was back to 100% at that time, the medical team didn't see a need for further tests. Their best guess at a diagnosis is that it was a retinal migraine.

We were discharged just two hours from the time we arrived at SickKids. Record-time! I gave thanks to God for just how fast we were in and out of there... and the excellent medical care my girl received.

We are to follow-up with our optometrist and family physician this week to investigate this a bit further so that's what we are doing today. I give thanks to God for the excellent medical care we have access to in this country. Upon phoning both doctors this morning, both gave me appointments right away for later today.

As we navigate the doctors' appointments this week, at the same time our family is remembering back to exactly two years ago today when we met our Compassion daughter, Florianlyn, face-to-face! God used that meeting to spark a fire in our hearts... which culminated in our meager gift being multiplied a thousand fold. I wrote our story and published it on here a few weeks ago. To read it, please follow this link.

Sweet Florianlyn. ♥

Today, I am giving thanks to God for His faithfulness, for His willingness to use broken people like our family, to invite us to join Him in His work of reconciliation and restoration, for His relentless love that never lets us go. He truly is always good and He truly always loves.

:: :: ::

As I continue to count grace-gifts, with unending thanks... to The One who is always good and who always loves... these are the things I am thankful for these two weeks, in addition to the ones already mentioned above... #3022 - #3040:
:: His peace, surpassing all understanding.
:: My parents visiting.
:: New carpet for our 2nd floor.
:: My girl starting driving lessons.
:: A great week at Robotics Camp for my boy.
:: Time to weed the garden.
Hello Monday!
I want to see God who gives gifts in hospitals, and gravesides, and homeless shelters, and refugee camps, and in rain falling on sunflowers, and stars falling over hayfields, and silver scales glinting upriver, and sewage flowing downriver. Eucharisteo is everywhere and I want to see eucharisteo everywhere, and I want to remember how badly I really want to see.
~ Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts.
Choosing to live a surrendered life... because Christ's love compels me... and giving thanks for everything that my good God so freely bestows, so lavishly gives and so extravagantly showers!

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Compassion is a command, an act of worship, a song of thanks to Him.
Do justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly with God!


  1. So, so - beyond so - inspiring.. Thank you, Aimee, for reminding us to focus on God and GIFTS, and not let the urgency of the present to consume us.

    1. Thanks, Stephanie! It's definitely a choice... thanksgiving is a choice.

  2. Visiting from Ann's. Thankful with you for the positive's even during a scary time for your daughter. And from your post I'm guessing your son must deal with peanut allergy. So does mine. I really enjoyed reading your post!

    1. Thanks for dropping by, Nicole. Yes, my son has a severe peanut allergy.

  3. As I read your post I was reliving a time with my youngest daughter who at age 14 went through a time of visual auras, too - scary stuff!! Sometimes it was colored lights, sometimes a gray crescent. . . we were so grateful for the diagnosis as migraine with visual aura. . . and blessed that there was only the visual sensations, but no typical "migraine" pain. Your testimony is one that gives courage to those walking in unknown territory. I'm new to the Thousand Gifts. . . I can tell by your numbers above that your quite a ways into this marvelous journey...

    1. Thanks for dropping by & leaving a comment & sharing about your daughter's past experiences with eye migraines. Yes, counting "1000 Gifts" has truly been a marvelous journey... truly a blessing!!!