jeudi 19 septembre 2013

Victory against the disease

"The Lord is my light and my salvation-whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life of whom shall I be afraid? "Psalm 27: 1.

It all started with the preparation of my mission trip to Cameroon for evangelization in Douala and Yagoua in northern Cameroon in October 2012. It seemed that the enemy was bent over me with a violence that I had not yet experienced in this form there. It is first of Pastor Dick Dominique who was to join me in this mission I received the bad news first: while returning to their home in the vessel that drove home in Pointe a Pitre Guadeloupe, the boat moved abruptly and his wife had a bad fall; as she poorly dragged down, she had a fracture of the spine with emergency hospitalization in Martinique, hold for a few weeks, then home care bed in Guadeloupe for months. Consequently, pastor Dominique Dick could not accompany me in Africa for evangelization.

two sisters in Christ from our Church had offered to accompany me. Two weeks after the bad news of Pastor Dick, they informed me that they did not feel spiritually ready for this mission ... But still, God's plans were on for this mission and two very committed Christian, my neighbors, a young couple, proposed to join me in this mission.

The first attack
I was only aware later, was miscarriage the lady had just before joining me in Cameroon. Then I learned that my daughter who was five months pregnant had to be admitted to the hospital because she was losing water. A month later she lost her daughter while I was still in evangelism and while we kept praying that the Lord preserve her life and that of her baby.

Once back
in France in December, I did not feel well and I told my cardiologist with whom I had an appointment early in January of my concerns about my health. Then she ordered me some medical tests and asked me to present the results to my GP. Thus began my fight against an "invisible" disease. I presented the results to the doctor who gave me to understand that there was probably a little problem with kidney failure, but it could be because I do a lot of sport. He asked me to stop so my sport for a week and repeat the same analysis he ordered me to turn. This was done, but the results were the same. Then he sent me to get an ultrasound of the kidneys with a radiology downtown. I made an appointment with the radiologist and the day of the ultrasound he tells me that there was a small hyperechoic nodular formation with abnormal contour on my right kidney and the fact that it did not appear to the last ultrasound he practiced two years before on the same kidney prompted him to recommend further investigations, including a CT scan. He sent me back to my doctor. From there I realized that I probably had cancer of the kidney. But I decided not to tell anyone until further tests confirm.

When I presented the results to the general practitioner, he clumsily began by telling me that I had a tumor in the right kidney, then corrected himself and called it a "nodule" which requires further investigations. Then again awkwardly, as if to minimize the situation, he told me a lot of people live with one kidney and that this was common. It was then that I decided to talk to my daughter who lost her baby in November asking her to pray for me and not tell anything to anyone until it is confirmed by other tests. She told me at that time that the baby she had lost was just a matter of right kidney: she actually did not have any... I was convinced that this was a diabolical attack. I decided to inform some brothers and sisters in Christ so that they join us to pray for me. Thus, apart from my eldest daughter, two couples friends knew and prayed for me. I harbored a secret hope that the following tests refute the diagnosis of cancer. I did not want to unnecessarily worry my wife the more so because I did not find it appropriate to disturb the girls in their studies with this problem, especially if it turned out that it was not cancer. I had similar experiences as a board member of the association of parents of girls’ school and I knew the consequences of this on the labor of children involved and I wanted to avoid that to my daughters, at least as long as the nature of the illness was not confirmed.

So I had to
take the folowing exam at Paul Strauss, a Reserch Center against cancer in Strasbourg.

For me the
wordtumor” rhymed (in French) with the phrase "you die". Since the doctor had pronounced the word, it was eating me inside and I was even more disturbed in my inner, all the more that I could not talk about with anyone yet. It was very heavy to carry it almost alone every day the Lord has made, because this situation was constantly in my thought. But the evangelist that I am remembered the Master's words echoing in me as an encouragement: "I will be with you every day unto the end of the world. " Matthew 28: 20. After all, I told myself, I am the servant of the Living God and everything is under His control. This illness is not for the dead, I was convinced that even a man of God from the U.S. who visited our church in Strasbourg prophesied over me that I would not die of disease, or lying quietly in bed, but in the action in service to Christ! Hallelujah! Therefore the enemy could attack me on that ground, I will not fear him (Psalm 27: 1) knowing that the Lord is my Shepherd (Psalm 23), I was then ready to face the disease.

On March 15,
when I was leaving the Paul Strauss Reserch Centre, I became convinced that it was time for me to talk to my family. I then gathered Marie-Hélène and girls in the evening to tell them the news. But before that, I expressly left hanging Paul Strauss Centre folder on the table so that they could see it and have an idea of what was goin on and make it easier for me to make this announcement. As on the folder one could clearly read "Research Centre against cancer," I said to myself that my wife who is always curious to read all the medical documents I bring home would certainly fall over it. And this was the case.

After dinner, we went up to our room and that's where I announced the news to all three fo them. As I expected, my wife had seen the folder and she had some doubts. The reaction of the girls was less catastrophic than what I could expect, which was an encouragement to me. They seemed not even have measured the extent of the situation. After this I also informed the church and the people of God. They brought us in prayer, my family and myself. Churches that have received us in Cameroon, were in daily prayer as well as all Christian organizations to which we belong. It was good for us to feel surrounded by God's people. The family of God has no borders. What a grace!

The GP sent me to a urologist of good reputation in this field. It hapenned that he is the one whom I got a surgical operation on my prostate nine years before with. So I took an appointment with him and he decided to perform the surgery on April 14. He explained with diagrams on the computer, how he would proceed. And assured me he would necessary preserve the diseased kidney making only partial resection, that he calledpartial nephrectomy of the right kidney”. He told me he was going to do with "lumbotomy", that is to say, by making an incision on the right side to reach the kidney and I will be therefore lying on the left side. He strove to reassure me about the process of the surgery. I had confidence because the first surgery (on prostate) went well as he had explained to me and I was released from the hospital two days later; two weeks after I was evangelizing in Cameroon in an International Bible Camp. Praise God!

My testimony:

The day before
my surgery, my younger brother, who had especially come from Cameroon, and my wife accompanied me to the hospital where I was admitted late Sunday afternoon. While we were in the process of discussing a very relaxed way, I received a visit from an anesthetist who came to prepare me for the next day surgery. His remarks turned the atmosphere that was relaxed a few minutes before. According to him, I had to expect a total removal of my right kidney, which were about the complete opposite of the words of the surgeon who promised me to preserve the diseased kidney. I retorted that it was not at all what I was told by the surgeon. He replied that there has often been surprises between what shows imaging and what they discover when they open the patient, and therefore, we had to expect the worst. I took it very bad and started to panic until I finaly got a grip on myself and I took authority in the precious Name of Jesus, once this prophet of doom was out of my room, and I proclaimed, "get away from me Satan, you have nothing to do with me!" Then I could sleep quietly!

The next morning,
when the porter came to pick me up and put me in the wheelchair, I had an extraordinary vision to the sight of the cross, which was above the exit door: Jesus was sitting on His Throne and sent His Angel treat me. He gave him a pair of tweezers that seemed out of the liquid nitrogen in his right hand, and one that seemed to come from a fiery furnace in the left hand. The angel came down to me and to my surprise, he opened my stomach, not as the surgeon had told me he would, but below the last rib on the right side. He took the kidney out and just pinched it with the cold tweezers and only removed the tumor. When the blood began to spurt out, he took the incandescent tweezers and put it on the wound and blood stopped flowing. At the moment, the kidney resumed its normal appearance and shone as if there had never been anything. It seemed brand new! Then the angel departed.

Great joy
flooded me and I was totally relaxed when I arrived in the operating room. The porter handed me over to the care of a nurse anesthetist who strove to reassure me. At one point I could not restrain myself and I bursted into laughing. She asked me why I was laughing and I told her that it was she who needed to be reassured, because I already was, for my "boss" had already done the work. Then told her the vision that I had when going out of my room. Curiously, she did not seem surprised and left me and joined the team in the theater block. I nolonger saw her until another nurse came to take me to the block. Once in the block, I was lying on my back on the operating table. At that time I received a visit from a priest who introduced himself to me as "priest anesthetist." He said he had learned that I was a man of God and he had to look after me. I told him that I was happy, but the "Boss" was already in charge of the operation. At that moment, I heard a discussion between the surgeon and his assistant she noted that the surgeon had planned the operation by lumbotomy and was wondering if they should not rather put me on my side. I heard the surgeon saying they should let the patient fall asleep first; then nothing ...

When I regained consciousness
in the recovery room, I saw the surgeon leaned over me, telling me that everything was fine as I had expected. I then imagined that the nurse anesthetist had told them my vision. In addition, I came to realize that I had been operated not by lumbotomy as the surgeon had explained to me during the preoperative interview, but just as the angel had done: by a subcostal incision.

The days that followed were really painful for me. I never suffered that much physically in my life. I never imagined how it could be painful. But that's another story…

I left
the hospital ten days after my surgery, I had an appointment six weeks after, for a first inspection in the office of the urologist. On test day, when the surgeon began the ultrasound of my right kidney, he suddenly called me and asked me to watch the monitor of the ultrasound: - there is not even a trace of a scar, it your kidney is like new! He told me. Of course, I am not able to distinguish an anomaly, a scar or anything else on an ultrasound imaging and frankly I could not see anything. But I knew one thing: in my vision, I saw that my kidney had become new, no scar after the intervention of the angel, shiny as if there had been nothing and this is the confirmation expected. May the Lord be glorified!

Despite the uncertainty
of the disease and postoperative consequences, I received the conviction to maintain some activities: the Global Day of Prayer and Lifeline Expedition Reconciliation Mission in Guadeloupe and Martinique. For the first, the Lord had provided. A friend and brother in Christ with all my heart could replace me and help me in the organization. Other people were involved and the program could take place. For the second, my strength had been miraculously renewed when I put my feet in Martinique. I returned in excellent shape from this mission so that when the ENT specialist examined me, he found that I was able to withstand a second operation: the one of tonsils and soft palate on which another problem also arose. Two months after the the kidney surgery, I went back on the operating table. This time it was even more painful than the first and I hope it will be the last. I resumed my work and I am convinced that it is in the consecration to the Lord that I will find the renewal of my health, and the fullness of my ability.

“He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He keeps me from the grave and blesses me with love and mercy. He fills my life with good things so that I stay young and strong like an eagle.” Psams 103 v. 35

My main prayer request:

I’m presently preparing
three major international meetings:
- The Diaspora Consultation for the evangelization in Europe Amsterdam in late September
- The March in "chains and yokes", a prophetic walk for the reconciliation of peoples affected by the triangular trade in Haiti in November
- The evangelization in Douala and Northern Cameroon campaign in December.

May the Lord renew my strength!