"You have to print a retraction and take that Calico post off your blog, Mom."
"No, John. It stays."
"Why? It just shows how wrong you were."
"Yes, sweetie, it does but to delete that post would rob God of the credit that is due to him."
Charlie stood just a step away from Heaven's gates while we called him the Calico Boy.
For weeks, the abcess grew, deep withing the recesses of Charlie's neck tissue; swelling invisible to human sight or probing fingers. Not once a fever, no sign of illness revealed until he began to sleep for long hours only two days before we brought him to the doctors.
"The abcess was huge. It extended from just under his ear, down to his voice box and went behind his esophogus." The surgeon measured of span of one and three and four inches with his forefinger and thumb as he described the area to me. "He's lucky still to be here."
The surgeon left the room Wednesday night and I sobbed into the phone to Stuart. He almost DIED! The gravity of Charlie's illness finally dawning on me. The battle for taking my every thought captive begun.
I shouldn't have been so impatient with his whining. We should have taken him in sooner. What if the pediatrician hadn't...? What if the abcess burst? What if...?
The funny thing is from the time we left the house on Monday, through the surgery on Tuesday and recovery on Wednesday, we had been blanketed with an impenetrable peace and now here I was trying to peel off the feather comforter by reliving the events, adding in imaginary senarios, magnifying the ways I had failed Charlie.
My iron sister-in-law came to the rescue with Psalm 91 and corraled my wayward thinking.
"I didn't know. How could I not know?"
"You didn't need to know, because God commanded his angels concerning Charlie. They were guarding Charlie in ALL ways. They were lifting him up before God's throne the WHOLE time! Your family acknowledges God, you called up Him and He is DELIGHTED to fulfill his promises to you because he is FAITHFUL."
Charlie's fight has strengthened the faith muscles of our entire family. We are rejoicing in the difficulties of this long week because they prove we worship a a mighty God.
Calico Boy stays to bear witness. It is a powerful contrast of our frail limits as parents and our Father's all knowing, glorious, saving power.
Quick Update: Charlie went into the hospital on Monday, January 6th with a bronchial cyst caused by a staff infection. The good news is that the infection is not resistant to antibiotics. The bad news is that the damage caused by the infection was so extensive that he will have to remain in the hospital until sometime next week on i.v. antibiotics. I am guessing he will get to come home sometime between Monday and Wednesday. He has a five inch drain in his neck that needs to be removed gradually.
If you are inclined to pray, please pray specifically for Charlie's peace of mind. He is very anxious about blood work and bandage changing. Also pray that the four older children continue to hold up. We have been asking them to carry a lot of responsibility and they have risen admirably to the occasion but they are beginning to miss their normal routine.