Four Weeks Ago today....

at this very hour, I was in the Recovery Room of the University of Alabama-Birmingham hospital. The LORD had just performed a marvelous "surgery" in both my body and my heart.
He used Dr Jeremy Goodman to do HIS bidding. But it was GOD's work...I fully realize that.

The nurse practitioner had told me (the day before) that I would be "woozy" and wouldn't feel like talking to anyone....but nothing could have been further from the truth. When I arrived back in my hospital room, I saw people rejoicing, and praising God for what had happened! I remember asking someone, "Am I in the hospital, or am I waking up in heaven?" My good friend, Pastor Charles Butler (who came from Chicago to be with me during this event) said, "Brother, you are in the hospital." (I was tempted to ask them if we could "try this again", but I knew better). I was wide awake!

Robert Daugherty, Anthony and Marti Stone, Pastor Charles Butler, Kevin Brooks, Ted and Judy Gee, and a host of other people were in my room, praising the LORD, and rejoicing in what HE had done. I was WIDE AWAKE! And I was ready to "hear all about it."

Pretty soon, I discovered that I had tubes running out of my IV flowing from my left arm, and a foley catheter flowing from my bladder--that catheter was my BEST friend that night....I had a very, very dry throat--the surgeon had intubated me so I could breathe during the procedure...and I had a couple of swollen places on my lips...but it was over!

I started "itching" some, and discovered that half of my otherwise hairy chest had been shaved...why on earth did that happen? Did I 'consent' for them to "shave my chest"? Well, obviously I had given my consent....and yes, the hair would grow back...eventually (I'm still waiting for that...LOL)

About 4:45 p.m. that afternoon, my friend Pastor Charles helped me get up and walk...without coercion from the nursing staff! With the IV pole, the Catheter bag, and a wheel chair in front of me (to steady me), I walked around the corrider of the nursing floor...and felt great....I was also very glad to get back to my bed!

That was FOUR WEEKS ago today....and it seems like only yesterday. Praising God for His favor. Bill George now has a new lease on life...the kidney is "working like a racehorse" (his words, not mine), and we are both recovering nicely.

Praise the Lord!

I'm Thankful for....

1) the special brother/friend who was in my hospital room at the University of Alabama-Birmingham FOUR WEEKS AGO today--when I returned from the "recovery" and offered to "rub my feet." I let him rub my feet. He is an elected Representative in the State of Tennessee...but he wanted to come PRAISE THE LORD with me during this event. I am so humbled and grateful for this wonderful man in my life!

2) a job..a career...where I can see people starting to get a grip on their future....and trying to turn things around for themselves...and the people who depend on them. It is always "better late than never." I just hope that I am leaving some good things in their hearts and minds.

3) a church family that truly and profoundly loves me. I can't remember any local congregation loving me as much as The Moody Church loves me! I am overwhelmed every single service by how these people show their love and care for me.

4) the privilege of being part of The Moody Church family. Every time I walk in the building, I am awe-struck, stunned, and amazed that God would allow me to be part of such a historic and magnificent group of people. This place has been celebrating the "joy of changed lives since 1864"...and this is "my family." I still can't wrap my mind around all of that! Never, in my wildest dreams, did I think I would be privileged to call this local congregation my "home church." But it is...and I'm so humbly grateful....more than I can express.

5) people who love and care about me...through it all....sometimes it gets "thicker" and sometimes it gets "thinner"...but through it all....I see Jesus in their lives.

Twenty-Two Days later....

I'm seeing the "goodness of the LORD in the land of the living" (Psalm 27:13).
Being a kidney transplant donor has been one of the most 'dramatic' things I've ever done in my entire life. I am recovering at wonderful, remarkable pace...and for this, I am most thankful.

All of my body functions are performing as expected...normally. My chest hair (which was shaven off HALF of my abdomen and chest) is returning....thanks alot, doctors! The laparascopic incisions (all four of them) are practically healed and unnoticeable now. The larger (4 inch) incision is healing very nicely, and itches just a bit. I can deal with it!

If anyone had even hinted, one year ago, that I would be an organ donor, I would have laughed them out of the room! But, the LORD knew that I would need this experience in my life...and that I would become a kinder, wiser, more obedient son through all of these "events."

The LORD knew that I would need this experience to help me develop a "compassion" that I had often read about--and had even spoken about--but had never experienced first hand.

This was a "life-changing" experience for me. As my great friend, Pastor Charles Butler, so accurately reminded me, "You were not a patient man, but the LORD is developing that quality in you..." And yes, HE did...and is still completing it.

Back at work, hoping to get my appetite back in full force (eventually), and learning to "trust and obey"....waiting for God's next assignment in my life.

But it won't be a kidney donation. That one is behind me.

A Prayer for today

O Father,
I magnify Your name this wonderful day! I rejoice in the fact that I can call You "Father" and know that I am Your child. My heart is overwhelmed when I contemplate all that You have done for me, through Your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

I am so completely helpless on my own...but You haven't left me on my own. You have sent Your wonderful Holy Spirit to fill my lift my head, and to restore my soul. You have made a way through the wilderness, and have provided refreshing streams in every desert of life. You have given sight to my blinded eyes, and courage to my fearful heart. All of these things, Lord, I realize and acknowledge have come from the goodness of Your hand.

I want to ask You, Lord, to touch people this day. Lord, my friend Melanie, whose son has been diagnosed with brain cancer....touch him this day, I ask of you. Show Yourself to be the HEALING JESUS that Your Word proclaims You to be, and that all the evidence proves You are, indeed.

Lord, I am specifically asking You to touch people concerning organ donation. O God, if You had not touched my life, I would never have experienced the THRILL and BLESSING of being an organ donor. It was YOUR hand, and YOUR grace, and YOUR provision...I can't thank You enough, precious Lord.

Help me to love you more this day. Help me to worship at the feet of Your Son, Jesus. Remind me to "rest my case at the Cross"...knowing that everything I need has been provided in that wonderful place.

In the powerful name of Jesus,


I Am A Man

Sung to the tune of Finlandia

I am a man created in God's image
Of Adam's race, now marred by pride and sin.
But through God's Son, Lord Jesus Christ, my Saviour,
I am a man who's now restored to Him!
The Mighty God who made me has redeemed me,
Now I'm His man, for Jesus reigns within.

I am a man appointed by my Saviour
To show His love in all I do and say!
His Holy Spirit is my source of power,
To live in light and point to Christ--the Way!
Lord, fill me now, and help me seize this moment,
As as Your man, I'll serve your cause today.

I'll be a man who walks with God in worship,
I'll be a man who walks with men as friend.
I'll be a man who loves and serves God's family
I'll be a man on whom God can depend!
Lord Jesus Christ, my King and my Commander,
I'll be Your man until my life shall end.

**Thank you, Pastor Jack Hayford for giving us such an inspiring and anointed text. This is a great challenge in my life.


I was in my friend Kevin's van, taking a "road tour" of the fabled University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa campus yesterday, when I heard the awful news concerning the tragedy at Fort Hood, Texas. A mental health worker--a psychiatrist--killed 12 military service personnel who were preparing to deploy in service of this nation.

Why? WHY?
Have we become such a nation of "disgruntled" people that we can no longer follow the instructions of those we have SWORN to obey? Are we so BRAINWASHED with our own ideologies (terroristic tendencies are what I'm referring to here), that we can never see another point of view--without resorting to some type of violence?

Why did this military officer KILL those he was charged to lead and care for? Has the United States of America deteriorated to the place that NONE of our "freedoms" (religion, press, speech, etc) are worth defending anymore--not to mention "exporting"?


God knew...

that I would

1) Need to develop much, MUCH better eating habits than I was currently using in the late Spring/Early Summer....

2) Get to the Cardinal Fitness Center (1/2 block from my apartment) and use that gym membership I had not touched in almost 9 months...but was paying for every month...

3) Lose 14 pounds...and get not only my body, but my mind ready for "the event"...

4) Lean on HIM and HIS wisdom, instead of my own--and I consider myself a pretty wise fella most of the time (therein lies my stubbornness)...

5) The surgeons that Bill George and I would both need...the nurses who would need to be on duty, and the people who would need to "be with us." He even knew that we would need to share a hospital room that first night, in preparation for our surgery....

I'm thankful that HE knows it all. Nothing escapes Him.

Expectations...Exceeding them...

I fully expected to be a "kidney donor" during the summer of 2009....certainly not in October 2009. God knew that if I had "my way about it" there would have been nothing but trouble. The last seven days have been almost blissful. Even during the "recovery period" from this procedure. The love and joy of God's Holy Spirit filled my hospital room, and I saw the "kingdom of God" at its very best....what a thrill to my soul. This is something I will never forget.

I fully expected pain after surgery....but not the joy that only Christ and being part of HIS WILL in HIS TIME can bring. God knew which surgeons Bill George and I would need. He also knew the nurses that would be so important to our "care" on Spain South Tower, Seventh floor.
All of these people were magnificent beyond description...many of them were the "face of Jesus" to me in the middle of the night--reminding me that GOD was in all the details of what happened.

I fully expected people to be around. What I didn't expect were the calls from all over the country...from Hawaii to Maine, and even from England, and the Middle East. People I knew, and haven't heard from in many years....and some I don't know, and will probably never meet...but all were overwhelmed by God's Spirit...and encountered Him in a significant way through "this event."

All I can say: To God be the glory, great things HE has done! I'm so humbled, amazed, and stunned that HE loved me enough to allow me to participate in what HE was doing. May it ever be so.