Gifts Beyond Measure

From James:

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” – Romans 12:12

“Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.” – Psalm 34:8

Today we received tremendous news from Johns Hopkins. So Young’s brain tumor is no longer “lit up” on the MRI. This means that it does not have evidence of fast-growing cells anymore. Dr. Kristen Redmond, our radiation oncologist, described the MRI as “perfect” and said that the white area on the tumor is “diminished significantly, if not gone.” It turns out that the previous MRI showed a short-term side effect of the radiation that was more an indication of tumor cells being destroyed than new tumor cells growing. The tumor has not gotten smaller and is not expected to, at least from the perspective of the doctors. Also, we continue to pray that So Young’s eyesight will be restored.

So Young has a Grade 2 astrocytoma, and that type of tumor can become fast-growing (Grade 3 or 4), but hers has not. We got a taste of what it might feel like if such a thing were to happen. But more than anything, today we also got a taste of God’s goodness.

Early on, many people dropped everything to drive So Young to Baltimore. Still more people provided meals for us, for almost 8 months straight. Now they have given up food and sleep to pray for us. That is the most tangible and significant gift they could have given: faithfulness, trust in God, self-sacrifice, prayer, and hope. You really bore a great burden with us. We would be lying if we said we were never afraid, but we felt protected and confident all along because of you, our family.

So many good things happened this week. Over fifty people fasted and prayed. Wednesday was So Young’s birthday, and her friends lavished her with love and honor. A couple who has already been so kind to us offered (unsolicited, a surprise to us) to let us use their beach house later in the summer, free of charge. Those are just a few examples from this week among many. And I don’t know why, but I honestly felt like all the good things meant that something bad was going to happen, like God was cushioning the blow for bad news. He was not. He was preparing us for more blessings.

Isn’t that just like God? He isn’t only merciful, holding back punishment from us, born his enemies. He is abundantly gracious, lavishing gifts beyond measure on his adopted children.

How do we respond? How are we going to live our lives differently after God has given us so much? These are questions that So Young and I have been asking ourselves since this all started. We don’t have concrete answers yet, but we know that we want to pour out the same love we have received.

I don’t know that we will be able to keep up.


8 Responses

  1. Wow, wow, wow….
    Lost for words here…but just tears out of gratefulness, to Him, to everyone that is involved in this, and for giving us a taste of heaven…
    We acknowledge once again how Mighty Gracious God is!
    Thank you God for letting us experience You with all our brothers and sisters in Christ! Praise our Lord!
    Grace and Grant Kim

    • What wonderful, awesome news :)!!!! We all cheered when we read your update on twitter and Peter’s e-mail. We give all praise and glory to God. He is so good… perfect in every way. We celebrate this wonderful news with you. We will continue to pray for So Young’s vision…we still hope and pray that the tumor will shrink.

      Hong, Christine, Joshua, Jonathan, Joseph

  2. I am so very happy for Ruby for you and your family. Now let’s pray for an improvement of Ruby’s eyesight.

  3. I too am so happy for you all. Will continue to hold all of you in my heart and prayers…

  4. God is faithful. His love endures forever. I want the tumor gone yesterday, but I wait on the Lord with you. Only God knows the best for you and your family. May God use us to bless your immediate family, extended family, church and friend family and world family. He has promised to never leave you, nor forsake you. His love endures forever.

  5. What fabulous news about So Young! She and the family are in my daily prayers. It is wonderful to see God in action in today’s world, and to see the power of prayer.

    I am so sorry So Young and the family are having to go on this journey, but it is this journey and the example you have set that has benefited me. When I first heard of the diagnosis, I determined I would pray for So Young every day. My prayer life was an area that was sorely lacking, still is, but it is getting better and stronger, and I thought this would be a good place to start. Consciously setting time aside every day to pray for her and the family, has made me more aware of what I am praying and how I am praying, as well as other prayer opportunities. My prayer list keeps growing and I keep feeling more and more enriched and stronger in my faith. I have So Young and you to thank for this. I also have a better understanding of the phrase, “Pray without ceasing.”

    I also want to thank you for the educatiaon you have provided about So Young’s astrocycoma. A colleague of mine has been diagnosed with a grade 3 astrocycoma. The biopsy revealed stage 2 and stage 3 cancer cells. From the information you have provided, I knew what to expect and what the treatment options would probably be, right down to the mesh mask. He has been keeping us informed, but I have been able to add bits of information from this blog (the radition appointment could last 2 hours but the actual radition treatment might only be 20 minutes) to augment his comments and educate my other colleagues.

    Congratulations, again, on the good news.

    • Monica,

      This is a really great response and helps us see how our story is worthwhile and blessing people. Our prayers go out to your colleague.

      Also, thank you so much for your prayers for us! Seeing this answer to prayer has bolstered our faith.

  6. Thanks to everyone for your responses here and for celebrating this good news with us! I have to tell you it was hard to just sit there after we heard it rather than jumping up and down and screaming or something. But I think our high-five after the appointment reverberated throughout the hospital!

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