Embracing and celebrating the gift of Eden

Posted by tom | Feb 22, 2010

Below are some reflections, taken from my Spiritual Autobiography

But first swing by this album for some photos of Eden's growth/development and click here for some birthday party pictures.  To God be the glory!

Eden's birthday cupcakes. She requested carrot cake cupcakes. Dad's favorite ;-)

On February 22, 2006, our family rejoiced in baby Eden’s first birthday as a child who continues to improve in health. As a sleepy newborn in her first several weeks of life we did not observe the way she twisted her neck and the misalignment of her eye. Maybe the bleed in her brain occurred shortly after the birth and was not immediately apparent. But after about a month, we had significant concern and before we knew it, Children’s Hospital had become a regular destination. On Good Friday, our doctors advised us to begin chemotherapy just after Easter to halt the growth of what at the time was considered most probably a brainstem tumor.

Despite our devastation, we traveled to be with family and asked to delay the treatment by several days. Shortly afterward, we were going through a series of proposals regarding next steps and exploring the possibilities regarding the nature of the mass that was causing a number of neurological complications. For nearly eleven months, the diagnosis remained uncertain as we visited various specialists, received home care from therapists, and repeated tests.

But God was always present with us. He never left, nor forsook us. It’s not surprising to me that many pray to saints on behalf of loved ones. How could one not long to call out to baby Elise Faith on behalf of Eden Linnae? It’s not surprising that Darwin lost his faith over the cruelty of the creation. Yet we have chosen to embrace the God of the Scriptures who has embraced us even before we have embraced Him. None-the-less on this earth, each day we live Inside the rain (Dave Bailey, 2002, http://www.davidmbailey.com/lyrics.cfm?song=119, Note: no longer available at this link)

. . . Let your soul be baptized every morning
As the silence turns into a song
And the tears of all the angels up in heaven
make a river where you can wash your pain
Even in the middle of the thunder
Don't let go of the love inside the rain

But we must keep in mind that not only do we have One More Day today, but that it is Another Holy Morning (Dave Bailey, 2002, http://www.davidmbailey.com/lyrics.cfm?song=210, Note: no longer available at this link) that he blesses us with when our eyes open and our feet swing out of bed to touch the floor:

To learn about the future, watch a child play
To learn about the past, hear what the old man has to say
To learn about the moment, stop and look around
Every single second has its own amazing sound . . .
As we each work through our demons and try to get on track
Everybody's had their doubts, from the peasant to the Pope
But the sun came up this morning so I believe there's hope
Call me crazy, call me stupid, call me foolish or naive
But it's another holy morning and as for me, I believe.

Update 10/18/2011: Brain cancer returned to take the life of Dave Bailey (February 26, 1966 – October 2, 2010). He will be missed. I rejoice, even though I knew Dave in passing, that he gave all that he did to the glory of God while he was with us.

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