Monday, August 10, 2009

Two, three months....

Caring Candle for
Mark Spriggs
Cancer Caregiver Help

Last February, around Valentine's Day we learned that my brother-in-law Mark had cancer. He under went surgery, and a large mass was removed from his abdomen, along with the several organs that the cancer had invaded.

The doctor admitted that some cancer was still left behind, in places that could not be breached by the knife. As soon as Mark was considered well enough to endure the next challenge, he began a very heavy chemotherapy regime.

Last Wednesday he had a MRI to determine if the chemo was having a good effect. On Mark's 51st birthday he was in the hospital and was soon to learn that the cancer had returned. A mass had formed again, just as large as before, and it is not in any way operable.

They discharged him to return to his wife of five years and his two young adult aged step-children, with the advice to get his affairs in order; he may only have two or three months to live.

Mark is a believer. He came to faith in the saving grace of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ around eight years ago. He then married a Christian woman and became active in a vibrant church, where he played worship music...he who before had rocked on the drums in clubs and videos. I've heard he has written faith music, and that he plays mostly bass guitar at church. We never got to see him in action in that capacity, but judging from the notes left by church members on his Caring Bridge link, he apparently has been much admired and his music much enjoyed.

The number of friends from his band days, and work places (he himself had worked as a radiology therapist...he worked with so many who had battle with cancer...) have left caring messages for Mark that have been quite comforting to all of us. As typical with siblings with different life paths and interests, there had been little overlap between our lives. It has been good to know his life has been full of friend and lot of fun.

Most of all, it is good to know that while parting is hard for all of us to consider at this time, (he is too young!) the parting will hold his healing. He will be fine, forever, and his only longing will be to find us all with him in heaven one day.

For now, we pray for a miracle, of course. Barring that gift, we pray for ease of pain, sorrow, and all the feelings that go with departing. We pray for that for all of us. For all of us here on earth who know that death is never timely, and dread the inevitable physical outcome for each of us.

The body is weak, and fails...the soul takes flight...and is an eternal creation. Like during the birth of a child, we as a family are labouring in our spirit for the end of Mark's season of life here on earth, and for the release of life, like a birth, into heaven.

Please pray for Mark's mom and dad, his brother and sister, nieces and nephews, wife and step children. Pray that through the dark days ahead they will still have a vision of light, a light of knowing that there IS a good eternal future ahead for Mark.


Sara said...

I'm sorry it is not better news for Mark in this life; yes, he is too young! I join you in your prayers for Mark and his family.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Jill.
Love, mom S

Anonymous said...

thank you for stating, so beautifully, what is on my heart. B

Vicki said...

Well-written, Jill.

"But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. (Titus 3:4-7)

What more can be said? Our prayers are with Mark and his family...all of you.

Mr Puffy's Knitting Blog: said...

Just heart wrenching. This is particularly poignant for me as our beloved pet Mr Puffy was diagnosed with an inoperable bladder tumor just yesterday. We similar only have a matter of months.

I feel my faith waiver as I question what it all means and why we go through such heartache. I wish for strength and courage for your family in this difficult time.

Willow said...

I'm so sorry, Jill, for all of you and will be praying for that miracle.

You mentioned my being a travel writer~ well, that's my dream job! I wish!

About geneaology research--my dad's cousin has been going to SLC for years and I am getting together with her this autumn. She is the person who has given me most of my information. I really have no idea where or how to start researching. If I get to SLC, I will definitely let you know!

Marg said...

Thanks for sharing this post. You have written this so beautifully.

We will pray along with you that a Miracle will happen. He is way to young.

Bless you, my friend.

Just a little something from Judy said...

I am so sorry that you are all facing this painful situation. We just went through a similar situation with my husband's boss who struggled with the mountains and valleys of cancer. You wrote this post so beautifully that I want him to read it too. I will remember you, your family and Mark in my prayers whenever God brings you all to mind. It definitely is a heartbreaking journey.

Julie said...

We all know somewhere that this life is not forever, yet at the same time 'death' is not something easy to face. I'm so sorry Mark had such unhappy news... God is a God of miracles and can still heal him!! I pray for his family for whom this will be hardest...that they will know the comfort of God and His people.
A beautifully thoughtful post, Jill.

Islandsparrow said...

Dear Jill,

Just getting caught up on blog reading and read this. I'm so sorry. I will be praying for Mark and your family. I'm sure it's a comfort to Mark and to you all to know the One who holds our days in His hands.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

I'm so sorry, Jill...not the news you had been hoping for. I will pray for Mark...and his family.

Kathy said...

Mark is so young. Prayers for God's grace and mercy. What a thrill if He should choose to heal as well.

Lovella ♥ said...

Jill, I will continue to pray for Mark and his family and for you who can do nothing physically to help but must wait and pray and wonder how each day really is. It is terribly hard to love someone and know that you will be saying that we'll see you on the other side.

I'm so sorry.