Mike Cope's blog

Monday, January 24, 2005

The slow process of rehab continues for us at Cook's. This is now eight days after the wreck. Just as Chris was intubated for about 30 hours to help his lungs begin to heal, so we have all been intubated by the community of faith. People have breathed for us when we couldn't breathe. They have prayed for us when we were too tired to pray. Yesterday Chris got to talk by phone to the only other child still in the hospital in Abilene. That was very comforting to him.


  • Dear Mike & Diane
    Was thinking about you all and praying over the weekend - and it's good to hear how Chris is improving.
    I know we haven't met, but Praise God - there's no distance in the spirit realm!
    Hang in there....we may not know the answers - but we know the Answer.
    I pray that you will know His presence all around you - especially at this time.
    God bless you all,
    Penny (UK)

    By Blogger Penster, at 1/24/2005 05:22:00 AM  

  • Mike,

    Someone, a few days ago referred to your blog community as a "church". I realized that after several months as a (mostly silent) visitor among this community of believers, I did indeed feel like I was a member of this cyber limb of the body of Christ. How amazing is God's love that we can receive it from people we've never met or even laid eyes on! How amazing that these "strangers" would weep for our sorrows and rejoice in our truimphs!

    Now that the "crisis" is over, and the long lonely daily journey of recovery begins, please know that we continue to lift you and your family to the Father in our prayers.

    By Blogger Lisa McD in FL, at 1/24/2005 05:46:00 AM  

  • Mike,

    I am a grad student at ACU and have been attending Highland for almost 5 months now. I am in a mentoring group with Jeff Childers and ever since news of the accident reached me, I have been moved beyond words with emotion and radically blessed by the family of faith. It is my hope to be able to life your family, as well as all the families who were personally involved by this tragedy, up in prayer for the rest of this year - as too often the prayers in my own life tend to cease once the routine of life takes over again. I look forward to becoming more involved at Highland, as well as getting to know all the families affected through prayer this year.


    By Blogger Donald Philip Simpson, at 1/24/2005 06:59:00 AM  

  • M,D& C,
    What a difference a week can make! I am amazed at the response and all the comments on this blog. WOW! I echo the person who likened it to an e-church. Though Chris has a long journey ahead, it's great to know that eventually he will get there and be just fine. Our thoughts and prayers will be with you evey step of the way! On a lighter note... while your Mom is still there, I hope you and Diane have a chance to sneak out for some Papasitos and an hour at B&N ...since your just right there! :) All our love to you and yours! Stephanie

    By Blogger SG, at 1/24/2005 07:33:00 AM  

  • I just had to send my love to you, having thought about and grieved with you all week long. The exhaustion you speak of so reminds me of how I felt caring for my brother last summer before he died. My parents and I couldn't eat or sleep when we most needed to do so. (My brother's brain tumor recurred while in his pediatric residency in Louisville, and he died last June.) And I am still weary, six months after his death, having thrown my whole being into his care.

    And so, I can empathize in a small way when you speak of your weariness. I was so tired one day, I actually slammed the jeep hatchback on my own head, knocking myself unconscious to the ground. It takes authenic talent to accomplish such a feat. But, I think I was aware of God's presence the most when I would get up yet another morning, knowing Who was walking me through this hellish path. Where does my help come from--it cometh not from me!!! I would go straight to my email family every single day for a cup of cold water. I have saved every email sent to encourage me.

    I am praying specifically for your health and sanity as caregivers. And I can only imagine the added turmoil of reliving your tightly held memories of Megan. There must be so many deep emotions vying for your attention all at once.

    I am sending my love from middle Tennesee. I deeply miss my days at ACU and Highland, but I am being incredibly blessed with my time at Woodmont. Rubel did a masterful job sharing some of your thoughts yesterday.

    I read your blogs often, but in my own emotional weariness and grief have never written to tell you so. I have not seen you since the Wineskins fundraiser several years back. By the way, my husband, David Hutchens, wrote the book used at a Zoe worship service two years prior--Pageland.

    I am ELATED to hear that your family has hope for Chris' full recovery.

    I have come to learn that hope is life.

    Robbie Robinson Hutchens

    By Blogger Robbie Robinson Hutchens, at 1/24/2005 07:40:00 AM  

  • What a beautiful metaphor about how we are sustained by God and his people when we cannot breathe on our own.

    Prayers for Chris, Diane and you continue.

    By Blogger Serena Voss, at 1/24/2005 08:20:00 AM  

  • Mike, your posts and the posts of everyone are giving me a sense of the power of God through community. When the crisis hits, it is so good for there to be a net to fall into, someone to breathe for you, as you said.

    What is amazing, perhaps even transforming, is that differences that are perhaps bothersome (not sure which word to use here, so bothersome it is) when there is no crisis seem to evaporate when there is one.

    There is a theology of compassion that just kicks into action in the midst of a crisis that just isn't so easy to arrive at when "everything's fine."

    Mike, I wish this had never happened to Chris, but witnessing the response of the community of faith is instructive to me. Your willingness to be so open with it, especially over the blog world, means a lot.

    By Blogger Fajita, at 1/24/2005 08:46:00 AM  

  • Robbie (I hope it isn't against the blogging rules to address other members of the Mike's blogging community),

    Bless your heart. It sound's like you took the phrase, "Go knock yourself out," seriously.

    As a part of the blogging community, I thank you for sharing some of your own story. May God be with you and your family on your own grief journey.

    When I read the blog today, I thought of Ezekial breathing life into the dead bones. Praise God for the Ezekial's among us.

    By Blogger David Michael, at 1/24/2005 09:14:00 AM  

  • Dear Mike, Diane, and Chris,
    You have been in the Saffel's prayers. THank you for sharing the updates with us. My sister-in-law, Tess visited with Matt in ICU last Monday. She works at Cook's with the bone marrow patients. I think you were out. She had surgery on Fri. - but should be back today and hopefully will get to meet you. I have told her so much about your family and how your faith has touched our lives.
    Love, Donna

    By Blogger dssaffel, at 1/24/2005 09:25:00 AM  

  • Mike, Diane and Chris,
    I know the last week has been an eternity. Just as you have no way to express your feelings with words, there are no words to express what has happened and is happening here. I don't know that I've ever experienced family to the degree that I have in the last week. As difficult as those eight days have been, there has been a gathering occuring here that is deeper than words and so much wider than the Highland community. The community you will come home to is a very different place than the one you left. Satan's direct opposition to your call for unity and his hateful attack on our children has only served to draw us closer to the God of everything and to each other. In-fighting over women's roles in the congregation seems petty and far away at this point. Steady on, guys. There are literally waves of prayer in Tsunami proportions that are bathing you and the other families involved in what I would have called a tragedy, but for today, it seems more fitting to call a triumph. Love you guys. Bought with the same Blood, Wes & Teresa

    By Blogger Wes, at 1/24/2005 12:20:00 PM  

  • Mike, I know you don't know me, but me and all of my friends here @ McM are praying for y'all. If theres anything we can do for y'all let me know. - Ryan

    By Blogger Ryan, at 1/24/2005 09:43:00 PM  

  • Mike,
    I do not know if you remember me since we only met once or twice, but I was a grad student at ACU and graduated in 2002. I'm now in the Air Force as a chaplain and deployed to Iraq at present. It is amazing how God works because the only reason I knew about your blog is because someone was asking me to participate in a blog and used yours as an example. As I started to read and learn about the accident with your son, my heart went out to you and I had to post something. I also noticed the name Austin Lemmons. When we were in Abilene, my daughter, Brooke, knew Austin and was in the same grade and class as him at least in 3rd or 4th grade. My prayers go out to you and to their families as well.
    I must say I'm also hoping others who read your blog will start or continue prayers for our troops in Iraq. I work as a chaplain at the hospital here, one of the two major military ones in the country, and have already seen way too much tragedy here. This morning I had to tell two Army friends whose Bradley vehicle turned over last night that they were the only two out of seven to survive. I talked with an Army soldier yesterday who lost his foot to an IED (improvised explosive device), though he prayed his whole helicopter ride over that God would let him keep his foot. He had lots of questions, but I'm afraid I did not have lots of answers. When tragedy strikes, just like it did to your Chris, and Megan, we don't have answers. We just have God and lots of questions. He walks beside us and carries us when we can't make it on our own. I continue my prayers for you, your family, Chris and the other two boys and their families. Please also keep us in Iraq in your prayers as well.
    Grace and peace and comfort to you,
    Duane McCrory

    By Blogger Duane, at 1/24/2005 11:57:00 PM  

  • Mike & Diane,

    Paul wrote to the Phillipians, "I have you in my heart." That verse has taken on new meaning for me these past several days, as I hold you and the other families directly involved in the accident in my heart. I know I can only begin to imagine what you are going through. I think of all the times you have put your hurts and needs aside to pray with us for our child (well, she is a young woman now). You prayed for us on so many occassions as Victoria's health put her at risk. I know the peace that comes from those prayers, and I know God is granting you that same peace as you comfort Chris and care for him.

    Sunday morning, when I came into the auditorium for worship, the area around "our seats" (you know what I'm talking about) was filled with middle school kids. It was great - because they were surrounding John Westin. Charles waited patiently for them but eventually was forced to go ahead and begin our service. What a blessing for me to be able to see that and it spoke much to the Bennett family. I hope someone videotaped the service for you. Victoria's boyfriend was with her, and she said he almost cried when Jim spoke. I got to visit briefly with Thom and I got a glimpse of what the two of you must be looking like - totally drained and yet keeping on.

    Monday afternoon, we were privileged to be a part of the group that gathered at Highland to witness the baptism of Cassisty Green. It was a great experience to see the middle school kids gather around her to rejoice with her, and I praised God that the kids had something to get excited about.

    A death and a birth. That's how life is. Praise be to God for allowing us to be family for both the Bourlands and the Greens.

    We pray ernestly for the time the three of you are back with us. Part of our family is missing.

    May God grant you peace and grace for the days ahead.


    By Blogger P Watson, at 1/25/2005 07:10:00 AM  

  • Mike,
    In times like these I often marvel at both God's wisdom and love in the gift of the church. He KNEW we would need each other... and gave us such a sweet way to care and be cared for! In times like this, it's also seems so ridiculous that we sometimes fight and don't get along--- and that often it takes an incident like this one to bring us together. Praise be to God for all things. We truly can rejoice in every situation, can't we? Blessings! sd

    By Blogger SkipD, at 1/25/2005 03:49:00 PM  

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