We took pictures of the progress all along the way. They are rather gruesome, but I thought I would let you see them if you REALLY want to. Be forewarned though, I didn't look at my leg until it had healed up quite a bit. The doctor had me keep it wrapped up when I was at home for fear of infection, and I couldn't handle looking at it in the doctor's office when it was about to be cleaned...oh, the pain!
Here's the link for all of you brave souls! ☺
The Lord has answered many prayers in our lives concerning this. When the doctor looked at my leg last Monday he said almost under his breath, "Who would have ever thought that it would close without a skin graft?"
I am so thankful for this very specific and positive answer to prayer.
Also, another answer to a prayer concerning my health is the status of my colitis. I say this cautiously as ulcerative colitis is know to flare up without warning, BUT I am better now than I have been in over 2 years! I still am not in complete remission, but I am well on my way. Please continue to pray that I won't have anymore set backs.
I am hoping that I am seeing the light at the end of a tunnel (hopefully it's not a train! ☺). The Lord has blessed so much in our lives here, and although I wouldn't trade what I have learned from it all, I also wouldn't mind if everything were smooth sailing for a while so that I can concentrate better on learning Portuguese.
When I first came to Brazil I determined that my theme verse was going to be Psalm 100:2a "Serve the LORD with gladness..." I had no doubt there would be struggles here waiting for us. I knew that life would be totally different and not as easy, but I was determined to face the struggles with joy and gladness and to be thankful for what I might need to learn through all that was sent my way.
I was prepared in my mind for some of the things that we have had to face--language struggles, cultural struggles, being nervous about the safety of my children, the prospect of being robbed at any time, and many other things, but I think health struggles were probably not on that list.
To be honest...not every moment during this past year and four months have been spent in gladness for all of our struggles. At times, I've been discouraged and frustrated, but I think this past problem with the ulcers has changed me much more than anything.
When we realized that the ulcer on my leg was more than just a "little sore" and more were appearing, I realized then that God was going to use this in my life to change me.
I was reminded recently of Philippians 1:6 "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." I am so thankful that I can rest assured of God's hand in my life. When we don't understand what is going on or why, we can look to God and know that his hand is guiding us and loving us the whole way. We can be sure that He means it for our good and His glory! He desires for us to be more like Him.
Have you ever read the book "Hinds Feet On High Places" by Hannah Hurnard? It's definitely worth the read!
For years I had kept this poem in my Bible. It's such a good reminder.
My life is but a weaving between my God and me,
I do not choose the colors, He worketh steadily.
Oftimes He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, and I the underside.
Not till the loom is silent, and shuttles cease to fly,
Will God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful in the skillful Weaver's hand
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned.
Well, I usually don't write like this on my blog, and this has become rather lengthy. But the Lord has done many things in my life over the past year to draw me closer to Him, and I figured since "it's my turn" to tell you what has been going on in my life recently, I thought I'd just elaborate on it a little.
I know the things that I've struggled with here are nothing in comparison to what others of you have faced and are facing, but I just wanted to tell you a little bit about how God has used these circumstances in my life. I still have so much to learn, and each day I see so many more areas in which I need to grow. I am so thankful that God cares for me and desires to use me in spite of my weaknesses!