As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Saturday, November 14, 2015


Ron picked up the hospital bracelet and wondered whether to keep it or burn it! And I said, "Keep it. It can be an Ebenezer."

Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying "Thus far the Lord has helped us."
I Samuel 7:12

On October 19, Ron went to work in the morning, to a follow-up with the surgeon in the afternoon, and to the hospital in the evening. He would spend sixteen days there as our lives took a detour that we didn't foresee. Isn't it a mercy that we don't see what is ahead? 

You may remember that Ron had surgery on September 25, a simple surgery to remove a bone spur that was interfering with the healing of a diabetic ulcer. Initially, he felt great, but as the days went on, the foot became red and swollen, he was plagued with low grade fevers, and he just felt a little "off." After several weeks of different oral antibiotics, the infection was spreading and an x-ray indicated that there may be some infection in the bone.

At the hospital, he was treated immediately with a spectrum of IV antibiotics while more extensive testing was done to determine whether the bone was involved. An abscess was discovered that was not at the surgical site. A second surgery was performed to clean the wound and to obtain bone specimens for cultures.

At the end of that first week, we anticipated a relatively "quiet" weekend there while we awaited test results on Monday. On Friday night, we kind of planned some things to do to pass the time. By Saturday morning, all of that had changed as everything took a downward turn.

The next days brought one thing after another. Ron had fevers, over and over again. He had chills. He was plagued by nausea. He began to have hip pain, and pain in his leg muscles.

Then he had kidney failure. That hit us out of the blue. He had come into the hospital with 100% kidney function and it had dropped to 23%.

Then one morning, he broke out in hives. And that was the good news...because now they knew that he was having a drug reaction. His medications were changed immediately, and my sweetheart could begin to regain the ground that he had lost.

The hives were gone by the next day; the fevers were lower and then gone. But some of the symptoms of the drug reaction were slow to subside. Nausea lingered and he went days without being able to eat.

Kidney numbers slowly began to improve.

He had a third surgery on his foot. The wound was cleaned again, specimens were taken from deeper in the bone for cultures, and the surgeon inserted some antibiotic beads. These beads will slowly dissolve and be released directly into the infected area.

Because infection had reached the bone, Ron would need to continue receiving IV antibiotics for several weeks. So that treatments could continue at home, a PICC line was inserted through his arm. Everything was lining up so that he could be discharged on Monday, November 2, Kati's birthday.

On Saturday morning, he noticed that his right hand was swollen. He was on IV fluids to help the kidneys; maybe the swelling was a build-up of fluid? The doctor ordered an ultrasound for Monday morning to rule out the possibility of a blood clot around the PICC line. The ultrasound, however, revealed several blood clots. The original PICC line was removed and another "tunneled" line was placed. He was started on a 3-6 month course of blood thinners.

Now he was ready for discharge, but it was too late to set up for home health to come the next day. So I went down to the gift shop and bought Kati a birthday balloon, the girls brought Chick-fil-A for dinner, and we celebrated Kati's twenty-second birthday there in Ron's hospital room.

On Day 16, after his evening round of antibiotics, Ron was discharged! Praise the Lord!

Ebenezer: "Stone of Help"

It was a long and hard journey with twists and turns and bumps in the road. Sometimes those "bumps" appeared as mountains! And sometimes it seemed like the road had no end. But this we know: "Thus far, the Lord has helped us."

We are still depending on His help, for the journey continues.

I promised to share some of what the Lord has taught (and is still teaching) me through this journey. My next few posts will be just that. I'll try not to go so long between postings, but life is busy here on the home front...


  1. Oh Cheryl what a road you have all traveled. Praise the Lord that things are improving. I'm praying for continued healing and strength for the days ahead.

  2. What a time you've all had. I'm so thankful to God that Ron is home and healing. Praying for strength as you juggle so much. Yes, these hard times teach lessons.

  3. Its such a good story of God's goodness and faithfulness!


  4. Your family is truly blessed to have Ron home with you. I have bone spurs on my foot that I need to see about and now I'm nervous. But I know no matter what God is faithful. And the wonderful story you just shared shows just that. Thank you so much for your great testimony.

  5. A wonderful testimony of God's presence and faithfulness through the whole ordeal. Ebenezer is the motto of my mother's extended family and they have family photos taken with that word on a sign. My great-grandfather would say, not hitherto has the Lord helped us, but He has done it ALL. Continue to pray that the healing continues right on target. Now you can join me in the veggie balance challenge!

  6. What a journey you have all been on. Praising God for Ron's being home and for regaining lost ground. (As for the bracelet... =D )

  7. Wow......glad he is recovering well. Lots of scary stuff. I would have cut that bracelet to pieces. 😉. Belated happy birthday to Kati.

  8. Definitely a scary time for you all. Glad to hear he is recovering. Prayers for continued recovery.

  9. Isn't it mercy that we don't see what's ahead of us? Indeed Cheryl, indeed.
    Prayers for the road ahead...

  10. What a long path your family has traveled. You are so right it's good we don't know the journey's path. Thank God for his goodness and mercy during Ron's illness. ♥

  11. Oh goodness! Praising God for His healing touch!

  12. Praise God!!! 'Life is fragile - Handle with prayer!' Isn't that the truth?
    So grateful all is beginning to settle down for you both!!

  13. Oh Cheryl you and your hubby have been through a long hard journey. Hoping the road to recovery is so much less now. The worse is over and now he can regain his strength and start to feel better. My prayers and good healing thoughts are with Ron and you.

  14. Such a long hard road to travel! Sending prayers for steady and complete healing (hugs)

  15. Bless your hearts! Y'all have been through the ringer with this thing and I'm so glad to hear about the turn around. I pray Ron continues to heal and that you'll have the best Thanksgiving and Christmas ever with so much thankfulness! We see God from behind and it's always amazing to take note of how He worked in our most difficult times. And the blessings continue. Yes! You keep that ebenezer! Happy Thanksgiving!!!

  16. I think it is Gods mercy to us that we don't see what's ahead of us. Thankfully he does and, is faithful to take us through those hard times. What a journey you all have been on. Will be praying that Ron will have continued healing. I would keep the bracelet too, it's a great ebenezer, I have an ebenezer box as well, with just those types of items in them, it helps me remember God's goodness and builds faith for the future

  17. Oh Cheryl, this has been such an ordeal for your whole family. And to think that it started with something that was supposed to be relatively simple. It is hard to see any loved one, but maybe especially our husband, in a state of seeming helplessness. We never know what tomorrow will bring, but we do know that God is faithful in all things. Praying for you and your family. Blessings on you.

  18. I praise God Ron is home and improving. I am so sorry you all have had to deal with such difficult and crazy illness and reactions. Lord bless you all and specially pray healing and restoration of health and strength for you as you nurse him!!~tammy

  19. WOW! What a long and draining ordeal poor Ron has been through, and your whole family as well. It is amazing isn't it what can happen from a simple routine procedure. Soo glad to hear that it sounds like the worse is behind him and he is home and on the mend now. I will pray that it all goes smoothly from here and he is back to his old self soon. I am looking forward to hearing all about what the Lord taught you through all of this, as I am sure there was much wisdom gained. Have a good week! hugs! Oh, and happy birthday to that pretty girl of yours!

  20. Oh my, what a lot to deal with all at once!!! Im so glad he is doing better. Praise the Lord!

  21. Wow...what a story. Praise the Lord for His healing powers!


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