Tuesday 21st February, 2012

A Tale of Two E-Mails
  I received two very different e-mails today, both of which moved me a great deal.

The first one came via a Christian colleague at Architecting the Enterprise.

He provided the following background

A short history – we have family friends who live in Spain. The Wife (Hannelie) was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago and started with treatment, much the same process as Mike went through last year. The results were however not as good as Mike’s and Hannelie’s condition deteriorated.

On Friday the 10th of Feb – Hannelie was in Hospital and Juan and their 3 daughters thought that she would not make it through the night. On Saturday were expecting the news of Hannelie’s passing away having had news on Friday that she was cold to the touch and the family could not detect any breathing – the doctors too were waiting for her to die.

At that point it seems that God intervened. Juan, Hannelie's hiusband reported:

Now that Han is at home I thought it helpful to summarise what happened over the last 3 weeks.

At the beginning of this month Hannelie was hospitalised with a urinary tract infection. The oncologist saw that her haemoglobin levels were about half the minimum level, and based on his experience he gave her 2 weeks to a month to live. We were shattered by this news and I took a month off to be with her all the time.

Over the next 2 weeks her condition gradually worsened. She became so weak that she could no longer walk and were delirious 90% of the time. It was apparent that the phases of death were running their course. Her one kidney started to fail as her urine had a very dark colour. The doctor explained that the brain was not getting sufficient oxygen, hence the delirium, and that was common in dying.

Friday before last I rushed her to the hospital with another blockage of the intestine. When this happens the body ejects its waste via the only opening possible, upwards, if the normal downwards route is blocked. The same thing happened last year when the tumour grew so much that it obstructed the intestine. Her oncologist examened her and said that the end was imminent, his assistant confirmed that she would go the same or the following day. He also indicated towards Hannelie's very strong muscle twitches as that her brain was busy dying.

That evening she reached a state where she was white as a sheet, ice cold and hardly breathing. I rushed the children to her bedside to see their mother maybe for the last time.

Afterwards myself, Nito and Lili prayed earnestly for and over her and we trusted God to save her. More that 2 years ago when Hannelie 1st became diagnosed with cancer God said that he would do a miracle before the nations that would be for his glory. We pleaded with him to uphold his word.

The next morning Hannelie was awake and amazingly she had a clear mind, for the 1st time in 2 weeks. She could not stop smiling and told us of the experiences she had with God. She also did not have anymore muscle twitches.

The doctor on duty was astonished and at least recognised that they could not explained what happened.

Since then Hannelie's morphine dosage has dropped from 1260mg per day to 480mg with no recurrence of the constant hip pain that she lived with for 1 year. She also used to take up to 6 fast acting morphine rescues per day, which she does not even need anymore. We are continuing to reduce her morphine intake daily to avoid strong withdrawal symptoms.

She is still very thin with weak muscles, so still a long road to full recovery. O, I almost forgot, the blocked intestine sorted it out by itself, without any surgery or any other treatment. She is also free from the chronic diarrhea that she made her life a living hell for one year (this is due to the radiation therapy).

We are very happy to testify to this miracle which shows that God still heals today, and that even cancer, the dreaded disease of our time, is under his authority. May his name be glorified in the nations because of this. Thank you Lord that you uphold your word


The second e-mail came from a long-standard contact in the world of swimming.

It is with the deepest regret that I have to inform you of the passing of my dear wife Jan. She left us at 8.30pm last evening (Mon 20th) sat on the sofa watching her soaps. It was all very peaceful and dignified. She went earlier than we expected but with her condition it was always going to be difficult to predict. Say a little prayer for Jan.

Jan had been ill for a while with Motor Neurone disease, with no realistic hope of a cure. While we have been praying for a miracle, realistically, we were also praying for a "good end". It seemed from Alan's message that she did indeed have a "good end".

I spent today in the Architecting the Enterprise office at High Wycombe and then followed up with a Basingstoke Bluefins Committee meeting. I paid with quite a lot of discomfort, but a really positive sign was that I recovered pretty quickly.