Thursday, December 18, 2014

Max & Makeya Will Be Home For Christmas!! UPDATE on Baby Obed, Connie Flanders, & Jimmy Neff

"But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
I Corinthians 15:57

Yes, you read that right!

Max and Makeya are going home today!!

Once again, God came on the scene, and He has answered the many prayers you have prayed for these two children.
Max improved, to the point that he was able to graduate from therapy 
and to be able to go home in time for Christmas!

How great is our God!!
I can't even imagine the joy in the hearts of Steven, Shyla, Shiela, and their other loved ones.

And while their hearts are filled with overflowing joy, 
the task that lies in front of this dear family must seem completely overwhelming.
How their lives have changed since they left their home on August 2nd!
Now, after over four months of hospitalization, not only must they acclimate themselves to life outside the hospital walls, but they must face that life without the smile and love and presence of their little five year old son, Quinton.
I am sure when they left home that August day, they never dreamed how much their lives would change and the nightmare they would endure before they ever stepped foot back into that familiar space.
Their lives will never be the same, and now, they face the aftermath,
with two little ones who are paralyzed and in need of continual care.

I am copying Shyla's words from December 10th here...

"Max is back to his regular settings on the vent, and he is doing a lot better. 
Thank you everyone for the prayers.
 Keep them up."

and from yesterday....

"Last night was rough for me because I had to leave the hospital to get things taken care of
 before we go home, including the house's electric checked for Max's vent, 
my van put in my name and insured, and then back up here at the hospital. 
It was the first time I have been back in LC since my baby boy was laid to rest. 
Today was the first time I have been in my house since Aug 2nd, and that was very hard. 
I am back up here at the hospital now doing the last things we have to do before he goes home, which is the 24 hr care. 
He took and passed the car seat test today,where he had to sit in a car seat for 3 hrs. 
As long as the ambulance people don't have an emergency, we will finally be leaving this hospital on Thursday at 1:30 pm."

The future must loom like an insurmountable feat in front of these parents.  
It occurred to me today, as I began writing this post, that the Brown family probably needs our prayers now as much, if not more, than ever before.
There is an odd sort of "letdown" that falls after someone has been in "survival" mode for an extended period of time, then must walk forward and leave the familiarity of it behind.
There is a feeling of insecurity, knowing they have to deal with these extenuating medical circumstances, on their own, without a nurse being instantly available, at the mere push of a button.
There is the emptiness that fills up the atmosphere, caused by the stark realization that a familiar voice no longer echoes off the hallway walls of their home.
There will be reminders of Quinton everywhere they look.
The reality of his loss will sink in now....more staggeringly than it has yet.

This is what life will now look like.
This is their new "normal".
Accepting it will be the most difficult stage of the process.
Healing will take a long time.
Not to sound hopeless, but in reality, they will never fully recover.
Because something precious has been removed from their lives,
and no matter what they are given from this point forward,
the void of his loss will remain.

Bless their dear hearts, to say their challenges are daunting seems like a very insufficient choice of words.
After all they have been through, it is now that their biggest trials begin.
I can't imagine how scary some of this must be.

Christmas is right around the corner, and I am sure it will be very bittersweet for them.
They will, no doubt, continually compare life this Christmas to what it was like last Christmas...
and Christmases before.

As you hurry about, doing what needs to be done this Christmas,
please keep the Brown family in your thoughts, and most importantly, your prayers, 
will you?
Pray that God will send needed comfort in every moment of overwhelming grief,
that He will give strength for each new challenge-filled day,
that He will hold them extra close and enable them to accept life as it is now,
and that He will continue to heal Max and Makeya. 

I don't know about anyone else, but I am still not giving up on their complete healing.
Just because they have been sent home and doctors have reached their full potential of a cure,
does not mean our God is finished with this miracle.
I still believe He will confound us all by raising them up and allowing them to walk again.
I sounds far-fetched and unreasonable, 
but this is GOD we are talking about, friend.

The God Who created the Heavens and the Earth and Who holds the universe in place
by only His Word.
The God Who parted the Red Sea and allowed His children to safely walk across to a place of freedom.
The God Who became one of us on that first Christmas night,
Who walked and lived and breathed in a human body for 33 years,
Who was scourged, mercilessly, under the hand and whip of a burly, hard-hearted Roman soldier.
Every stripe left upon His precious wounded, mutilated-beyond-recognition body
was for the purpose of our healing....for Max's and Makeya's healing.

Jesus suffered, that we might be healed.

"...He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities:
the chastisement of our peace was upon Him,
and with His stripes we are healed."
Isaiah 53:5

As He suffered, He knew there would one day be a little 2 year old boy named Max
and a little 6 year old girl named Makeya, and an innumerable multitude of others,
who would be severely wounded.
So, He stuck it out.
He suffered.
He did what He had to do.
To make a way for them to be healed.

God's thoughts are so far above our thoughts.

"For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways,
and My thoughts than your thoughts".
Isaiah 55:9

I don't know what His plan is for these dear children.
But, what I do know is that God is not any way.
He is not hindered....except by our lack of faith.

"And He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief."
Matthew 13:58

God has the power.
We must believe.

I know I have asked many, many times before, but at the expense of sounding like a broken record,
and at the risk of over-trying your patience, I put before you a repeat petition.
Will you please seek God's will about possibly sending the Brown family a blessing this Christmas?

Now that they are home, they will face many new needs.
We all know bills do not stop pouring in, just because life has been rearranged
and employment has been suspended.
Life goes on....and so do the expenses.

I know there are a lot of needs in each one of your individual circles,
and sometimes, we feel that donating to one more cause, no matter how deserving,
would be one too many.
But, just in case you feel the Spirit of God leading you, 
I will, once again, include instructions for ways to bless the Brown family.

If  anyone would like to send the Brown family a card of encouragement,
please contact me, and I will provide the mailing address to you, individually.

If anyone would like to make a monetary donation to this family,
there are two ways to donate.

1.  An account has been set up for this purpose at a local bank.

Please mail donations to:

Citizen's Deposit Bank & Trust
P. O. Box 9
Vanceburg, KY  41179
Please write "For Brown Family" on the memo line of check.
2.  You may donate online by clicking HERE.

You can read the original prayer request post and each update by clicking the links below.

Baby Obed continues to slightly improve, praise God!!

This is his Daddy, Travis' latest update...

"Obed’s cardiologist appointment went well.  He currently weighs 10 lbs. 10oz.  She increased his medicine just a bit due to him retracting slightly while breathing. Our next scheduled cardiologist appointment is on Dec 31st, so I guess that means he will not be having surgery this year!  
I’ll let you know if anything changes.  Thanks again for praying…"

Did you hear that, folks?
God has answered our prayers, thus far!!!

Let us not become weary in interceding to God on behalf of this precious, little one!!
Please keep praying and believing God for no surgery...EVER.

Jesus said, "According to your faith, be it unto you."
Matthew 9:29

So, if we believe Him for no surgery, can we not expect that He will grant our request?

Maybe I am just plain too simple-minded to just believe and take things at such face value.
But, I still believe that if we have faith the size of a grain of mustard seed, 
we can speak to a mountain, tell it to move, it will move, and nothing will be impossible unto us.
(Matthew 17:20)

To read previous posts about Baby Obed, please click on the links below.

Connie Flanders endured a five hour surgery on Friday.
It was probably the most extensive operation I have ever personally heard about.

Still hospitalized after over three months, 
Connie continues to need a LOT of prayer.
Her road to recovery will be long and hard to tread, 
but we know God is able to bring her through,
and our faith relies on that.

To read previous posts about Connie, click on the updates below.


Jimmy Neff is now under Hospice care at home.

His condition continues to worsen.
Please pray for peace and strength for Jimmy,
my brother, David (Jimmy's step-dad),
my sister-in-law, Dorothy (Jimmy's mom),
his siblings, David, Naomi, and Melissa,
and all other family, loved ones, and friends.

To read previous posts about Jimmy, click on the updates below.


Christmas will be very different and difficult for so many this year.
Please pray for all who are hurting, both physically and emotionally,
and who will not be able to rejoice this Christmas season.

Do you ever become weary from the burden of so much suffering...
both in your own life and in the life of others?

The Apostle Paul put it this way,
"If in this life only we have hope in Christ,
we are of all men most miserable."
I Corinthians 15:19
(Emphasis added)

Aren't you thankful we have a hope beyond this life?
That this life is not all there is?

Aren't you glad that there will be a day when all of the suffering of this life will have passed away,
and we, as Christians, will have inherited a Heavenly home, void of all sadness?

Click here if video doesn't load.

Revelation 21:4 says,
"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes;
and there shall be no more death,
neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain:
for the former things are passed away."

Even though this life is hard and there are many burdens that weigh down our spirits,
many moments of pain and anguish and grief and misery,
God gives sufficient grace and assures us that it is better farther on.

Click here if video doesn't load.

Click here if video doesn't load.
Please keep praying, and
press on, dear friend, press on!


  1. Dear Cheryl,
    Thank you for the update. So happy to hear that Max and Makeya are going home! Oh, what a time their family has had. Praying God will continue to heal and comfort them. Will also keep praying for Connie and Jimmy.
    Hope you are doing well, sweet friend. ♥

    1. Thank you so much, dear friend!! Your prayers and support and visits here are SO appreciated! You always bless me when you stop by. God be with you and bless you and your sweet family this Christmas!

  2. Prayed! We have a big God. Yes, there is an overwhelming needs everywhere and God sees everything. I lift up everyone and everything to Him because He is the source of everything. His grace is upon everyone and everything happens for a reason.
    God bless your soul my friend for your concern, for all the words and prayer. We keep on praying and believing.

    1. So thankful for you and your encouraging words, sweet friend! You are so right...He IS the Source of everything we need. I don't know what we would do without Him to turn to! Sending much love to you and yours this Christmas!

  3. Hello Cheryl,
    Thanks so much for the update....I was so happy to hear about Makeya and Max going home, and will surely be praying for
    them and their parents........I am sure it would have to be quite scary for their parents for sure, and I agree with all that you
    wrote. So happy to hear Baby Obed needed no surgery and will hope and pray it will never be necessary and like you will
    pray for Max and Makeya's complete healing, He is able.............. because I so agree with you, the Lord is able to heal whatever and whomever He desires to heal.
    Was not familiar with Connie and Jimmys story, but am lifting them up right now too.

    You are right it is so wonderful to know that this is not all there day we will live with Jesus and there will be
    no more tears and no more sorrows and what a wonderful world it will be...........Glory!!
    I pray He is coming soon to get us out of here!!

    Thanks for being such a prayer warrior, I am sure all these folks so appreciate you sharing their stories and rallying all
    the prayer support.

    Hope you have a Very Merry Christmas hon,

    Love and Blessings,

    1. Dear, sweet Nellie! It always brightens my day when you stop are such a blessing to me. I can't thank you enough for your kind, precious words. God bless you and yours with a very Merry Christmas, also. I love and appreciate you so much!

  4. I am so happy for Max and Makeya. I will be praying for this family because of their loss of Quinton and all they have endured. I am praying for Baby Obed and Jimmy. Thanks for posting the update on Connie. I have some updates to post but I am waiting on a picture from Taylor's grandma. I will also be adding some prayer requests such as my nephew and some close family friends. Thanks for your loving care.
    Love ya

    1. Oh, Chris! It means so much to have your prayers and support and friendship. I know you are always there praying and lifting up the needs to our Heavenly Father. I feel so bad for Connie and all she is going through...and all of the others, too. So thankful to know that God is in control, and He is working all things together for the good of each one. Love you!

  5. So happy to hear that Max and Makeya can be home for Christmas! What a special and yet sad Christmas! So, so many needs around us. Thanks for sharing!

    1. I am so happy to know they are going home, too. What a precious gift! Thank you for your thoughts and prayers for them. God bless you and your sweet family this Christmas!!

  6. I am so thankful that Max and Makeya are to home for Christmas... what a blessing... and thank you for encouraging all to continue to pray - they will need it greatly. This trial is not over for them even though this great milestone is occurring and it is good to be reminded to pray... even the care the children will need every day, every night... continues.... and so does the fatigue. What a blessing to have so many people raising them up in prayer. There are so many needs. We have been going through our own crisis w/ my dad's heart surgery and caring for him and Mom and we are so very tired, which is a good reminder of the tiredness of these parents. Thank you.

    1. Oh, how I can relate to all you are going through! It sounds so similar to what we went through when Dad had his heart surgery, and Mom and Dad came to live with us for about six months. I know your load is heavy and tiresome, and my heart truly goes out to you. Trusting God to give you the daily strength you need. "The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms." Deuteronomy 33:27 God bless you and keep you and hold you close! Merry Christmas to you and your family!!! Thank you for praying for the Browns. I know you have faithfully carried their burdens to our Father through this and am sure you will continue to do so.

  7. I think you are so right! This precious family needs committed prayer warriors lifting up their burdens now more than ever. Just thinking about the weight of all this mama and her children have to bear makes it hard to even breathe, even see how to take another step. But Praise God that He is the Light, the Way, Breath. Praying now. Your friend from #TellHisStory

    1. Thank you so very much, Becky! Yes, how grateful I am that He is the Light, and He leads us out of every dark place, if we only follow Him. :) I loved the thoughts you shared here today and can't thank you enough for your sweet visit. So grateful to walk this blogging journey with you! I trust God will bless you and yours with a very Merry Christmas!! Sending much love and many blessings your way, in Jesus' name!! :)

  8. You know how much my heart goes out to these people, and how I have been praying for them. I am oh-so-grateful for the answers that God is bringing. I just read on Chris' blog that Connie is off the ventilator and awake. That is a tremendous blessing. And to hear of Max and Makeya's Christmas homecoming - well, words would not suffice. I will pray for the Brown family especially tomorrow as they face being in the home that held so many happy memories, as they look around and miss "what was," as they suffer through the day without Quinton. I am going to pray for comfort and peace, but most of all, I am going to pray for a tangible sense of hope. Might it be the best gift they open all day.

    Baby Obed - that guy is a fighter. Continuing to bring him before the feet of Jesus.

    And prayers for Jimmy, and for your entire family. This is so heartbreaking. I know that God can do anything, and I pray for that. But I have a feeling that Jimmy's miracle is going to be the miracle of a homecoming, a complete and total restoration as he sees Jesus face-to-face.

    And lastly, Cheryl, my prayers for you and your family on this Christmas Eve. May tomorrow be full of the presence of our Lord, and the remembrance of all that He did for us - a baby born to die.

    Love you, and GOD BLESS!

    1. Yes, dear precious friend! You have walked every, single mile of this journey with this dear family, and you have shown your love and support to and for them in countless ways. They are so blessed to have you in their corner...praying, interceding, and reaching out to them through this horrible experience. And, me...I am so VERY blessed to have you in my life. I cannot even count the many times you have encouraged and blessed and inspired me...both at your precious, God-infused blog and here, too....leaving inspired comments when my spirits were so low. You are a gift to I count the gifts of 2014, I realize that God bringing you into my life and across my path was a Divinely-orchestrated gift that I am SO very grateful for! I can't thank you enough for every prayer you have prayed, every kind word you have spoken, and every kind act you have bestowed. May the dear Lord bless you abundantly this Christmas, and may 2015 bring more blessings to you than you have ever known. Love you so dearly.

  9. Thank you for taking the time to share these updates and prayer requests especially at Good Morning Mondays. You are such a blessing to those in need and I appreciate the opportunity you give us to pray. I wish that there was more we could do from so far away but please know we are praying as much as we can. Blessings to you and your family at this time.