Our Multi-cultural Director, Brad Wos, was recently hospitalized for 10 days. Here’s his story from his online newsletter sent out today…
Dear Praying Friends,
“May it never be that I should boast except in the cross of Jesus Christ.”
For over 36 years, I have planned mission trips to follow the Lord. For the last 10 days, the Lord, has sent me on a mission trip to Barnes Hospital. This is the 12th leading hospital in the United States. What a blessing how the Lord has cared for our family on this mission trip and given me the gift of cancer to live grace with the sick and medical professionals.
Praise God! The doctors have cleared me for release from the hospital today, early this afternoon. This has been an unplanned 10 day mission trip and spiritual retreat that has richly blessed me with a new gift of cancer from God! What an honor to be chosen to steward this gift and suffer with my Lord! The Lord has given Patty and I a very sweet gift of intimate prayer with Jesus these last 10 days, refreshing us in His grace. I will have to keep my distance from people, no hand shaking or hugging, because I will be susceptible to infections.
Here is the story our Lord is writing the last 10 days…
Many of you received my May update and summer schedule on May 29th. Little did I know that I would be sent to the hospital by my doctor later that afternoon. Here is the story of how God is at work.
My second treatment went well and the doctor is sending me home after 8 days on mission at Barnes Jewish hospital. God is at work to glorify his name in my weakness and I want to give you an update that you can use to explain to others and send to others that are asking about me with pictures of where I am at in this new mission of CLL!
CLL stands for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. I have a blood disease that is over producing white blood cells.
Praise God when I was first sent on May 29 after a routine physical to Mercy Hospital, my white blood cell count was 644k. On June 6, my white blood cell count was down to 430k so the Lord is making progress. The average is 12k. The staff at Mercy said they have never seen a count that high. They sent me to Barnes ICU for 12 hours and asked what is this guy doing in ICU he does not have ICU symptoms. The concern is that the white blood cells being removed get clogged in the kidneys, spleen and lungs. Please pray for today that the white blood cells will continue to flow out with no clogging or side effects.
Since Thursday afternoon of last week, we have been in room 8808 on the oncology floor with mainly bone marrow transfer patients and with many ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia) or AML (Acute Myeloid Leukemia) patients that are really suffering. Acute is the dangerous mutated cells that need to be replaced. Last Thursday, I had a bone marrow biopsy that told me if I had chronic or acute leukemia.
I had to wait for 4 days and I prayed and meditated and worried. Dr. Pusic from Croatia came in with the news that I have CLL. Many CLL patients live for 15-20 years. God has given me a peace that this is for his glory and a new mission field to reach the nations and plant churches through this suffering.
I have been accepted to a world class clinical study that uses Bio and Immunotherapy instead of harsh chemotherapy. There is a missionary from the Congo that was diagnosed with CLL and in 6 months went back to the field with clear health. His treatment consisted of Chemotherapy. A friend of mine, Mark Cornwell, and I teach ESL at First Free, he has had CLL for 19 years, and will be my CLL coach.
Here are some of the pictures of staff that I have been building relationships with and asking everyone that comes into my room how can I pray for them?
This is Doctor Kahl, at Washington University, who is a world class specialist in CLL and leads the clinical study I am part of for Immunotherapy.
This is Doctor Iskra Pusic from Croatia. Her first name means spark and she is a live wire. She is so much fun and loves to bike and has invited me to participate in Pedal the Cause Leukemia Biking event.
I went to the chapel and met Father Michel from Malawi and we really connected on how to minister together here at Barnes. An African gift in the healing process.
Doctor Ramzi Abboud is one of the fellows I met that sent me to ICU in God’s providence. His dad is a leader on the BMT floor for 40 years. He is from Lebanon and a soccer nut. He came to my room last night to watch USA vs. Jamaica, an US National Game that my son managed at DC United Stadium.
Last Monday, these 4 Godly Pastors, anointed me with oil and prayer.
Above all this is my greatest gift of a wife who loves me and demonstrates her love by being at my side this whole process! What a gift!
Here are the three treatment drugs I am on for the next 19 months. They are complicate to say so we call them Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego, walking through the fire with Jesus!
Thursday, day 2, I have my large dose of Obinatizamab and it lasts for 7-8 hours. The medicine gave me the chills but it is working. Please pray that my white blood cell counts drop to below 100k and my spleen reduces in size. The concern for the ICU was a ruptured spleen full of white blood cells. I still will need to lay low with no Soccer or major exercise for 2 months till my spleen returns to normal size. The spleen is the filter of your body and mine was clogged with white blood cells.
On a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being best I am a 4.3 right now. I feel good and have a good appetite and have gained back weight. I lost 7 pounds to 193 and am back at 200.
Galatians 6:14 says “May I never boast except in the cross of Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me and I to the world.” I consider this an honor to share in the sufferings of Christ and pray I do not waste this cancer but lift high the name of Jesus Christ and his cross as I boast and glory in my weakness.
Yours for the Nations!
Central District EFCA