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A Titanium wife

IMG-1413Well… here goes:

We just got back from a day in Kiev. Pris is officially in hospital awaiting an operation which will replace three discs in her neck on Monday morning. We were told to leave a bag on her bed and come back Monday morning. OK. We don’t need to understand why they do it this way. We just need to go home with three titanium discs firmly in place sometime next week.

She will write a bit later on tonight about this:

What an amazing few weeks!  If you aren't particularly interested in medical stuff, you might want to skip the next few paragraphs.

As some of you know, my right side has had pain issues for years (from neck problems), slowly increasing in intensity along with the increasing of age!  This has brought a lot of good about in my character and life and habits, (including exercise which has helped to keep the pain in check much of the time). 

This year we were able to pursue some treatment after quarantine lightened at the Institute of Vertabrology and Rehabilitation.  They were amazing, but each doctor referred me on until we ended up at a neurosurgeon's office.  This neurosurgeon evidently has the reputation of sending patients away if there is a hope for some other more conservative treatment fixing the problem. With me, he simply said that I needed surgery and should not wait too long because the pressure on my spinal cord could cause permanent damage soon because my neck is unstable. 

We were not hugely surprised as over the recent years we had been urged to consider surgery.  I think both of us feel peace and even joy facing surgery - even though the surgeon did not promise miraculous results.  He is confident that the three implants will relieve the spinal cord and give stability, but nerves are funny things and can be completely relieved of symptoms or still cause hiccups.  We pray for the former of course.  :)

Two different couples heard about the decision to pursue surgery and wanted to help cover the cost!  We were greatly encouraged and felt as if we could move ahead.  So a few days ago Daniel ordered the implants, (Ukraine has an amazing and different system for medical treatment.) I successfully passed the covid-19 test, and today was admitted to the hospital (with a weekend pass to go home) and did all the pre-operation tests.  Very early Monday morning we will return there for the surgery.  One of the nurses quietly told me on the way out that this doctor is the best and he is the one they try to send their loved ones to if a need arises. 

We feel guided and sheltered by God.  A friend and I are trying to 're' memorize these beautiful verses this week:  "You are my servant, I have chosen you and not cast you off"; fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  Isaiah 41:9b-10

Thanks for praying for me and this body I am in.  I think that is probably why I have such peace.

Whatever the outcome next week, may I still be useful to God and His kingdom.


After we left the hospital, we were able to pick up our temporary residency permits. It is always a beautiful experience when you go somewhere in Ukraine to “do documents” and it takes you less than 10 minutes with no hiccups. We fairly danced out of that office! Three weeks ago when we were there, we were told that we didn’t have a “notarized” translation of Elle’s passport and would have to leave the country with her and get a new thousand dollar visa if we couldn’t get back to the office before closing time with a copy. We phoned around and finally found someone who could do it and made it back with a couple of hours to spare in the end. 10 minutes in and out is bliss.

The boys out at the rehab home are doing well. We ended up making the decision to take Max back and he returned earlier this week, only to leave again today. It’s very unlikely we will take him back again. If he comes to an end of himself and seeks help, we will send him to another centre.  It’s the sad nature of this particular focus.  Some guys do not see God… and will die in their sins.  The other lads seem to be doing well.  They’ve just spent a couple of days gathering hay for our sheep to live off during the winter months.  Oh!  They are also already enjoying the produce from the large garden they planted… and sharing it around.

It looks as if the freight project is finally doing well. We have already had two buyers commit to buying the two cars you see in the last blog post and which we started advertising yesterday. Pasha is gearing up for another trip to Europe next week to get two more cars… and we will repeat the process. Praise the Lord for His mercy and guidance!

It’s now 11:00. I just got home and had a cold shower after working up a sweat helping a friend and his new wife move into their home. (8 people working together make light work of unloading a van full of stuff.) Tolic went through rehab with us and is now studying in seminary. He’s going to preach in a couple of weeks and I look forward to it edifying and encouraging me. I’m reminded that God is Almighty God when I look at Tolic’s life. What a change God has wrought!

“The world is yet to see what God will do with a man fully consecrated to Him.” I love spending time with men and women who are challenged by that thought. “Consecration to God…” May He be glorified greatly because of our consecration to Him.