Friday, January 23, 2009

Getting Him Back

Brian's working so hard in rehab. He's faced with learning to gain his independence in ways so many of us cannot even begin to comprehend. He's trying hard to make sense of it all, see the potential for goodness in his loss, to grow his faith in & his understanding of the Lord. Thankfully & as can be expected from our God, I believe we see the Lord responding.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer & supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; & the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts & minds through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7).

As we continue to lean on Him, God continues to answer our prayers & grow our faith in His assertion that He is a kind & loving God, with a plan for all of us that surpasses all earthly knowledge & understanding.

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom & knowledge of God! How unsearchable [are] His judgments, & His ways past finding out! For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has become His counselor? Or who has first given to him, & it shall be repaid to him again? For of Him & through Him & to Him [are] all things, to whom [be] glory forever. Amen (Romans 11:33-36).

Brian & my parents participated in their 1st medical treatment team meeting yesterday & like so many of you, the staff integral in his recovery (doctors, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, & the list goes on) echo a special fondness they have found for him too, though they can't say what exactly it is for sure that draws them to him.

I don't think I can either, but I'm going to give it a try:

One recent memory that embodies my brother was right after I had Owen & before Brian moved to Charlotte. I'm going to be honest--motherhood was (& still is) NOT a natural adjustment for me. Owen was a "high-needs" baby (the more pc term, old school baby books refer to this temperament as demanding & difficult). I was (& still can be) a very selfish new mom, so we were obviously not an ideal combination (Yet one that God uses to teach me so much!). I remember Brian calling one day to see how things were going & I burst into tears, (probably for about the 5th time that morning), told him how horrible the morning was & through snot-laden sobs rambled about how much I just wanted to eat & take a shower.

Not interrupting me even once during my lame fit of self-pity, Brian then calmly offered (in that way he can where his voice kindly implies he just doesn't see what the big deal is, the answer seems so obvious) to bring me lunch & watch Owen, though he admitted he had no idea what he was doing. He gets here with a couple of sandwiches, I cautiously hand him Owen, & run. When I finish cleaning up, I walk out to find Owen sleeping peacefully in Brian's arms...

Brian is genuinely interested in helping people. He has a presence & poise that often says a lot without him saying hardly a word. He has a quiet strength about him that impresses. He is loyal, respectful, patient, & supportive. He is a person, (& a male at that!), who actually listens. He always seems to handle intense pressure with amazing grace. He's also pretty darn funny too.

Yeah, so you might notice I left out athlete. Athlete has been a big part of his identity for so long & maybe it still will be when all this is said & done, but it doesn’t really define who Brian is anyway. Don't get me wrong, the natural strength & athleticism he possesses (that his nephew also shows signs of) are blessings that will serve him well as he heals & makes physical gains. However, when we all think about what it is that makes an impression on us with Brian, the word athlete just doesn't begin to cover was the exposure he got as an athlete that allowed so many to see these truly special characteristics, characteristics that remain intact to who he is & that I know God will build upon, no matter what the final package might be.

Of course, Brian's participation in the medical meeting? Apologizing for complaining too much. Apparently the team was taken aback with this response. First, I doubt many people suffering a spinal cord injury roll into their first meeting apologizing for feeling a little angry & bummed about things. I mean, Job repeatedly wishes he'd never been born while enduring all the tragedies he faced (Job 3 & Job 10). (So, even if you are a complainer, like I admittedly can be, thankfully God thinks no less of you when you take those concerns to Him). Second, apparently in the spectrum of patients with spinal cord injury--Brian's hardly what they consider a complainer. Need I say more about those parts of his personality that touch so many of us?

Brian already has such a foundation for God to use to touch so many lives. The more Brian comes to learn about & trust Jesus Christ, even when faced with situations as painful as his, we know that the Holy Spirit will work to grow those fundamentals of who he is into so much more.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law (Galatians 5:22-23).


  1. keeter,
    i wish i could've come yesterday with sarah(even though i know you're glad you got her to yourself)...hang in there buddy! everything is going to be okay and i KNOW more miracles are in store for you.


  2. Praise God!

    Kara's right about Brian having a gift of caring more for others than himself. As the Holy Spirt begins to bring the charater of Christ. We're so happy so see Brian going through this Paul phase. I call it that because God got a hold of him and for 3 years God was shaping, molding and transforming him into the very image of his dear Son Jesus Christ.

    Galatians 1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace,

    Galatians 1:1 Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)

    Alot of people have heard of God and Jesus Christ but don't know who he really is. It's by the grace of God that he reveals his self unto us. This takes place on the inside of a man. Sometimes you want people to see so must what God has revealed to you, but it may not be the appointed time for that individual. I pray that Word which Kara has poured out, and the Christ working on the inside of Brian, and this blog opens the blind eyes, heals the sick, and raises the dead. What do I mean by dead? That's anyone outside of Christ, because without him we are counted as sheep headed to the slaughter house. It's the Grace of God that we are alive walking around and at anytime we can be awaken unto righteous. At anytime we can see the Word, hear the Word,then we can be converted into that word that we see, hear, and understand.

    God Bless 100 fold

  3. Brian has so many special talents!! Brian is my cousin it is always a joy to hang out with him. I got to see Brain grow (being my younger cousin)and have been lucky to also learn from him. I will tease him at times and call him the Jedi Master because of his calmness. I am very luck to have a cousin like Brian. For he is more than just a cousin to me he is my friend.

    I also wanted to say that the story Kara told about Brian is a classic of how Brian is.

    Be strong, Brian. G-d bless you and everyone.

    Be Well,