An Update and an Announcement!

It has been several days since we have posted, and time seems to be flying by.  Part of the reason for not posting is that there really does not seem to be anything new to say.  The other reason is that we are very busy!

Catching up on everything around here and keeping up with the kids seems to be occupying all of my time.  We are also trying to get Elisabeth’s ITBS testing done, and seem to have several appointments each week.  I guess this is only the second week home, so I should not be surprised that things are not “normal” around here yet.

We also made a trip to the emergency room at 3:30 on Tuesday morning.  Mike woke up with chest pain that was different than anything he had experienced.  It took some convincing, but he finally agreed that it should be checked out.  They did the usual tests:  lots of blood work, chest x-ray, EKG, CT with contrast.  The only thing that showed up was a small amount of fluid in one lung and around the heart that is consistent with being this far out from open heart surgery.   They did say to watch it, though, and see our doctor if the pain gets worse.  So far it’s been better, so that’s good.

Mike felt like he had once again put me out.  Overall, I am quite calm during these things, and I absolutely do not feel put out.  He had no pain when he had the blood clots in his heart and lungs, so we both want to be aware of anything that might indicate that happening.  This whole experience has been so traumatic that I definitely prefer that we be cautious.

On a totally different note, Mike is preaching on Sunday!  Before we went up to Mayo for surgery, Mike had hoped to be back preaching by Easter.  In the first days of speech therapy, he was very frustrated by what he felt were silly exercises.  At that point, his wonderful speech therapist, Rebecca, asked what his goal for speech therapy was, even though she knew the answer.  He said that he wanted to be back preaching.  She then asked him when he wanted to be doing that by.  He said, “Easter.”  She responded by saying that she thought that would be doable, while I sat in the backgroung shaking my head.

Rebecca had no idea how long Mike usually preaches, or the amount of study that precedes the writing of a sermon.  Or the number of books he usually reads.  At that time, reading was very difficult.  So they talked about it.  She said that she didn’t think 40 minutes would be doable, but 20 would.  She also did not want him to feel pressure, so she suggested having preaching on Easter be the goal, knowing that it did not have to happen.  So began “sermon preparation as speech therapy.”

Rebecca helped Mike think through the organization of his sermon and explain specific points.  She helped know what processes he needed to go through in order to write the sermon.  She typed out his ideas, and then they would e-mail back and forth as Mike made progress in the evenings.  She even said that he could e-mail her if he needed help after we got home. 

So, Mike is preaching on Sunday.  This is not his comeback sermon, as he is certainly not ready to do this on a weekly basis.  The sermon has been in the works for 3 1/2 weeks, not the normal 3 days.  God has been so good to us!  Who would think that Mike would have a speech therapist who would understand him so quickly and suggest he work on a sermon for therapy!  I certainly would never have imagined a month ago that he could even think about preaching.  But God knows that preaching is Mike’s passion, and Rebecca knew that, too.  Besides, Mike has nothing to lose.  Rebecca said she’ll take the blame if it’s a flop!


12 thoughts on “An Update and an Announcement!”

  1. Karla,

    We are in awe as well that Mike will be preaching on Sunday and SO looking forward to that!

    We made several middle-of-the-night trips to the ER following Dale’s open heart surgery because I, too, didn’t want to take any “chances” that something serious was wrong. Fortunately, his was medication related, but it’s OK to be cautious!

    We’re thankful that Pastor Mike’s was not serious.


  2. The fact that you will be preaching on Easter Sunday will most certainly be a blessing to all who hear it! Welcome back to doing what God has called you to do, Mike. I pray for your continued healing and progress with all of your therapies. Happy Easter to you and all of your family. God’s blessings!


  3. Hi Mike and Karla,
    We were so glad to hear that you are home, making progress and now to know you are preaching on Easter! Wow, that is quite a bit of drama for that very special day! It sounds like you are farther along in your sermon than I am! That is why I’m in my office after 10 p.m. on Thursday night! I wish we could all hear your first return address, but we can be sure that you will give all the glory to God for the great things He has done. Hallelujah, What a Savior!!

    Praising the Risen Lord,
    Pastor Don Johnston


  4. Mike,
    On sunday I’m going to tell my congregation that you are preaching! That will be cool.

    Praying for you.



  5. So what time on Sunday will Mike be giving the sermon so that those of us not there can lift him in prayer and praises!? I do hope Mike will publish the sermon on this blog. Awaiting Easter, Robyn


  6. I rec’d a prayer bookmark from Mary Jane Krueger last Feb. when I met her at a women’s event in Raccoon Valley. I’ve been praying almost daily for Mike and this morning felt strongly led to pray for his return to the pulpit. (My husband is a minister, too, and I know how difficult it can be to be absent from your life calling!) It was such a joy to see from this post that Easter will be a very special answer to this prayer. Our church is lifting you up in prayer in our corporate meetings as well. May you be blessed!


  7. Mike and Karla,
    On and on and on the trials go and where they stop nobody knows. David knew something of this, he must have or he never would have or could have written Psalm 13,

    Psalm 13:1-3 How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? 2 How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? 3 Consider and answer me…

    But by the grace of God you can finish your cycle of trial with the confidence that David finished his… for what was true of David is true of the two of you as well.

    Psalm 13:5ff But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. 6 I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me.

    What a deal — an all but resurrected man preaching on resurrection Sunday — but some day a truly resurrected man will walk the new heaven and the new earth with middle of the night runs to the hospital forever, and ever, and ever behind him. Such is the promise of Easter — such is the promise of God for us in Jesus.



  8. Mike and Karla,

    Praise God for the Rebeccas or should I say “Ruth’s ” of the world! Mike we are so excited to hear this news. I can’t wait to hear your sermon. What a great testimony to the resurrection power we know in Christ.

    Brent, Laurie and Hunter


  9. WOW, Wish we could be there for that… Mike you are a great man and God loves you so much. We will now pray for your finishing your goal and the blessings that are sure to come from it. Have an amazing Easter.


  10. Resurestion Sunday!!!!
    We rejoice with you for answered prayer….

    I am beginning a new journey to improve health issues… I will be away from my family for 6 weeks to 3 mos.
    Doors have been opened and I am walking through, AFTER MUCH PRAYER, IN FAITH BELIEVING, once again, to achieve, more quality of life….




  11. It was great to see you both last night at the Good Friday service. So many people were lined up to see you it felt like it must have been the receiving line at your wedding! Wish we could hear that sermon tomorrow. May you be the conduit for God’s words to God’s people. You have been faithful to Him, and He to you.


  12. Max and I will be praying for you tomorrow as you step back into your life work of bringing the good news. What better person to do that? Your goals have brought you thus far so what better goal than to be in the pulpit on Easter?
    We are attending Easter with Andy and Sam as they consider joining a congregation in a historic building in Methodism downtown that is being assisted in revival by our church at Resurrection. It will have made the circle again. Wishing all of you a Happy Easter! Love, Darlene (I hope you received your package this week)


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