February 20th 2004
Coach and I pray for you everyday as well as all your family members. We know God's hand will be guiding the surgeon’s hand when you have your cranioplasty. You are a great warrior John - I know the going is slow but your fight will be rewarded abundantly. Be encouraged and know that you are loved.
The Pencil Maker took the pencil aside, just before putting him into the box. There are 5 things you need to know, he told the pencil, before I send you out into the world. Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best pencil you can be.
1 ... You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in someone's hand.
2 ... You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, but you'll need it to become a better pencil.
3 ... You will be able to correct mistakes you will make.
4 ... The most important part of you will always be what's inside.
5 ... On every surface you are used on, you must leave your mark. No matter what the condition, you must continue to write.
The pencil understood and promised to remember, and went into the box with purpose in its heart.
Now replacing the place of the pencil with you, always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best person you can be.
1 ... You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in God's hand. And allow other human beings to access you for the many gifts you possess.
2 ... You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, by going through various problems, but you'll need it to become a stronger person.
3 ... You will be able to correct mistakes you might make or grow through them.
4 ... The most important part of you will always be what's on the inside.
5 ... On every surface you walk, you must leave your mark. No matter what the situation, you must continue to serve God in everything.
By understanding and remembering, let us proceed with our life on this earth having a meaningful purpose in our heart and a relationship with God daily.
-- Author Unknown --
January 6th 2004
Good morning John,
Just got home from a stay in the hospital, got knocked off my healthy mountaintop by a bully again. Oh my, from my present perspective laying here flat on my back that mountain looks so very high – insurmountable! Yesterday I didn’t think I could do the massive climb for a third time but my family and friends prayed my spirit back. This morning I’ve been thinking, thinking, thinking about my preparation for the climb, about your courage, your fight, and your wonderful progress. Now you are helping to strengthen me.
I’ll tell you what this whole experience with all its difficult consequences can’t do:
It cannot cripple love
It cannot shatter hope
It cannot eat away peace
It cannot destroy confidence
It cannot kill friendship
It cannot shut out memories
It cannot silence courage
It cannot invade the soul
It cannot reduce eternal life
It cannot quench the spirit
It cannot lessen the power of the resurrection
Though Satan may spew his lies all about you he cannot touch your spirit for it belongs to God. Why must you bear this pain? I cannot tell: I only know our Savior does all things well.
Always remember and never forget: You cannot get down off an elephant but you can get down off a duck.
I found the most wonderful Scripture this morning and wanted to share it with you. Bless you John and your family and
keep up the good fight to be well again.
I can hardly wait to continue on my course. I don't expect to be embarrassed in the least. On the contrary, everything happening to me in this jail only serves to make Christ more accurately known, regardless of whether I live or die. They didn't shut me up; they gave me a pulpit! Philippians 1:20/MSG
December 24th 2003
Thinking & praying for you and your family and wanted to share a story about Christmas Love...
Each December, I vowed to make Christmas a calm and peaceful experience. I had cut back on nonessential obligations - extensive card writing, endless baking, decorating, and even overspending. Yet still, I found myself exhausted, unable to appreciate the precious family moments, and of course, the true meaning of Christmas.
My son, Mike, was in kindergarten that year. It was an exciting season for a six year old. For weeks, he'd been memorizing songs for his school's Winter Pageant." I didn't have the heart to tell him I'd be working the night of the production. Unwilling to miss his shining moment, I spoke with his teacher. She assured me there'd be a dress rehearsal the morning of the presentation. All parents unable to attend that evening were welcome to come then. Fortunately, Mike seemed happy with the compromise.
So, the morning of the dress rehearsal, I filed in ten minutes early, found a spot on the cafeteria floor and sat down. Around the room, I saw several other parents quietly scampering to their seats. As I waited, the students were led into the room. Each class, accompanied by their teacher, sat cross-legged on the floor. Then, each group, one by one, rose to perform their song.
Because the public school system had long stopped referring to the holiday as "Christmas," I didn't expect anything other than fun, commercial entertainment - songs of reindeer, Santa Claus, snowflakes and good cheer. So, when my son's class rose to sing, "Christmas Love," I was slightly taken aback by its bold title. Mike was aglow, as were all of his classmates, adorned in fuzzy mittens, red sweaters, and bright snowcaps upon their heads. Those in the front row- center stage - held up large letters, one by one, to spell out the title of the song. As the class would sing "C is for Christmas," a child would hold up the letter C. Then, "H is for Happy," and on and on, until each child holding up his portion had presented the complete message, "Christmas Love.
The performance was going smoothly, until suddenly, we noticed her; a small quiet, girl in the front row holding the letter "M" upside down - totally unaware her letter "M" appeared as a "W". The audience of 1st through 6th graders snickered at this little one's mistake. But she had no idea they were laughing at her, so she stood tall, proudly holding her "W". Although many teachers tried to shush the children, the laughter continued until the last letter was raised, and we all saw it together. A hush came over the audience and eyes began to widen. In that instant, we understood the reason we were there, why we celebrated the holiday in the first place, why even in the chaos, there was a purpose for our festivities. For when the last letter was held high, the message read loud and clear: CHRISTWAS LOVE" And, I believe, He still is.
Mother Teresa was asked what was the greatest need in the world today. She said, "Go home and love your own family."
Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Merry Christmas John celebrate the love God put all around you. Bless you and each member of your family and loved ones. 2004 will truly be your Happy New Year.
November 29th 2003
I’ve kept in mind what your parents good friend JoAnne Harper said on 11/10/03 in her note to you: “The body goes where the mind takes it” With that in mind John and Team Hessler may this be an encouragement to each of you for what lies ahead. We already know GOD ANSWERS PRAYER...HE IS FAITHFUL, SO SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP TO THE NEXT CALLING OF GOD FOR YOUR LIFE.
SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP!
This parable is told of a farmer who owned an old mule. The mule fell into
the farmer's well. The water wasn't very deep, so the mule could stand on
the bottom. The farmer heard the mule praying-or whatever mules do when they
fall into wells.
After carefully assessing the situation, the farmer sympathized with the
mule, but decided that neither the mule nor the well was worth the trouble
of saving. Instead, he called his neighbors together and told them what had
happened...and enlisted them to help haul dirt to bury the old mule in the
well and put him out of his misery. Initially, the old mule was hysterical.
But as the farmer and his neighbors continued shoveling and the dirt hit his
back a thought struck him. It suddenly dawned on him that every time a shovel
load of dirt landed on his back he should shake off and step up. This he did,
blow after blow of dirt hitting his back.
"Shake it off and step up....shake it off and step up...shake it off and step
up" repeated to encourage himself.
No matter how hard the blows, or how distressing the situation seemed, the old
mule fought panic and just kept right on shaking it off and stepping up.
It wasn't long before the old mule, battered and exhausted, stepped
triumphantly over the wall of the well. What seemed like it would bury him
actually helped him, all because of the manner in which he handled his
adversity. That's life. If we face our problems and respond to them
positively, and refuse to give in to panic, bitterness, or self-pity...the
adversities that come along to bury us usually have within them the very real
potential to benefit.
Remember, amateurs built the Ark. Professionals built the Titanic.
John, You and your family are all doing great. Keep on shaking it off and stepping up. You are loved.
November 22, 2003
Coach and I are both so happy for you and your family and friends. People are jumping for joy all over the world. What a glorious Thanksgiving for Team Hessler and all those who love you and have been praying for you. We earnestly thank God for His second touch and your awakening. Enjoy your loved ones as you continue your healing process.
Mercy and truth have met together; Righteousness and peace have kissed.
November 19, 2003
Wow, what a joy to share this good news of continued healing progress. Jolenes joy just makes you want to smile from your toes - doesn't it? I just want to share the Scripture I read this morning and my thought while studying. You are all in His tender care.
“And he was restored and saw everyone clearly.”
Mark 8:25 NKJV
This Scripture verse comes right out of the epiphany of Jesus healing a blind man. Knowing it’s about Jesus it’s not so surprising that a healing occurred. What’s surprising is that our Savior, Jesus, spit in the guys eye. Yuk! I actually prefer a more conventional healing myself - like touch! He touched me. Melodious isn’t it? Anyway, when the guy opened his eyes Jesus asked him if he could see and he said he saw people; they look like trees walking around. As I’m thinking about these verses, my mind wonders to thoughts about John and how grateful his loved ones and caring people are that John received our Saviors touch. As his brain is healing and he is slowly regaining the ordinary functions of life we all grow anxious for his old self to return. He too must be in the ‘people look like trees walking around’ stage so to speak. Jesus didn’t leave the man in the story in that condition and He won’t leave John in this stage either.
You would think Jesus spit would be strong enough to fully heal a blind man. It is fascinating to watch this story unfold explaining that while eyesight was restored, it was still somewhat foggy. A second touch was required and when Jesus put his hands over the guy’s eyes, “he was restored and saw everyone clearly”. Wow, we could all use a second touch from Jesus in our lives to bring into focus what is before us.
That’s what I’m praying for you John, a second touch from your Savior so that you may see clearly all you have loved and learned thus far in life. I also pray blessings and a heart touch from Jesus to each member of your family so their thanksgiving will be ‘thanksliving’. As your journey unfolds to Jesus touch may joy be the peace and confidence that puts a smile on each face that beams love your way.
November 14, 2003
June & Keith - I am praying for deep rest for you tonight. I know you must be weary – not discouraged but weary. It’s a very long time for Mom & Dad to carry this concern and longing in your heart for your son. May peace and rest flow over all the family tonight, may your strength be renewed and refreshed and may your hearts rejoice with song at sunrise.
Matthew 11:28 Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
THE REAL MEANING OF PEACE
There once was a king who offered a prize to the artist who would paint
the best picture of Peace. Many artists tried. The king looked at all the
pictures. But there were only two he really liked, and he had to choose
One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror for peaceful
towering mountains all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy
white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect
picture of peace.
The other picture had mountains, too. But these were rugged and bare. Above
was an angry sky, from which rain fell and in which lightning played. Down
the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look
peaceful at all.
But when the king looked closely, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush
growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her
nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird
on her nest in perfect peace.
Which picture do you think won the prize? The king chose the second
picture. Do you know why?
"Because," explained the king, "Peace does not mean to be in a place where
there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst
of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real
meaning of peace."
November 12, 2003
Praying The Holy Scriptures for Team Hessler
Psalm 77:16…...The ocean looked at you, God, and it trembled deep down with awe.
Nehemiah 1:5….O LORD, God of heaven, our great and awesome God
Psalm 27:13, 14...I am confident of this: Team Hessler will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.
Isaiah 57:15……Our holy God lives forever in the highest heavens, and this is what he says: Though I live high above in the holy place, I am here to help those who are humble and depend only on me.
Isaiah 53:5……..He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities;the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.
Acts 26:18……. Open your eyes and turn them from darkness to light.
Exodus 15:26…..I am the Lord who heals you John
Exodus 23:25…..serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water.
Proverbs 3:8……It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones
Proverbs 16:24...Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones
Proverbs 17:22…A merry heart does good, like a medicine
Proverbs 17:22…He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds
Psalm 126:5……Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy
1 Peter 4:8……..Father, I pray that Team Hessler love one another
1 Thes 5:11…….encourage one another, comfort, edify, and build one another up.
1 Peter 4:1……...Serving by the strength that You supply to each one, so that in all things You may be glorified.
Neh 8:10……….Letting the joy of the Lord be their Team strength,
Psalm 138:8……Father, I thank You that You're perfecting everything concerning the members of Team Hessler.
Psalm 92:10…....Anoint them with fresh oil.
Psalm 103:5……Satisfy them with good things
Job 1:10………..Father, place a hedge of protection around each member of Team Hessler, around their households, and around all that they have on every side.
Psalm 34:7……..I thank You that the angel of the Lord encamps around them
Proverbs 2:24… They shall lie down and their sleep shall be sweet.
1 Peter 4:19…… I thank You Father that Keith and June and their household are committed to You
1 Peter 5:7…….. casting all their cares upon You
1 Peter 5:9…….. and steadfast in their faith.
Proverbs 17:6…..Knowing their children's children are a crown to Keith and June, and they as parents are the pride of their children.
1 Peter 5:10…… Father, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle each member of Team Hessler in Jesus' name. Amen
November 10, 2003
God can heal John, care for his family, encourage John’s friends, and lift the spirits of those praying from near and far away places. Moreover, I’ve learned He can do it all with His left hand:
Little Bobby was spending the weekend with his grandmother after a particularly trying week in kindergarten.
His grandmother decided to take him to the park on Saturday morning. It had been snowing all night and everything was beautiful.
His grandmother remarked, "Doesn't it look like an artist painted this scenery? Did you know God painted this just for you?"
Bobby said, "Yes, God did it and he did it left handed."
This confused his grandmother a bit, and she asked him "What makes you say God did this with his left hand?"
"Well," said Bobby, "we learned at Sunday School last week that Jesus sits on God's right hand."
“Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy”. Psalm 126:5
Joy, Joy, Joy. Have a Sonshine day!
November 9, 2003
Our hearts are thrilled with the good news. What a difference a squeeze can make. Go Team Hessler! “Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy”. Psalm 126:5
You must all be in need of a good nights rest so we are praying Psalm 4:9 over Team Hessler tonight: “Safe and sound, may you lie down and sleep, for God alone will keep you secure”.
Sweet, sweet dreams...
November 7, 2003
The coach for the little league team had not yet learned the names of all the players, so he called them by the numbers on their uniforms.
He yelled, "Number 5, your time to bat," and Jeff came to the plate to hit.
He yelled, "Number 7," and Steve jumped up. Then he yelled, "Number 1," but no one got up.
Again he called out, "Number 1." Still no one emerged from the dugout.
The umpire was getting annoyed at the delay, so the coach yelled out, "whose number 1?"
The entire team responded,
"We are, coach. We are!"
The entire Hessler team is number 1 and you are all fighting together. Lloyd John Ogilvie said, “Expect the dawn of a new beginning in the dark nights of life”.
"Just when a caterpillar thinks it's the end... he becomes a butterfly...."
I will be praying all week-end Romans 15:13 over the #1 Hessler team: "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit". And butterfly kisses on each precious forehead.
November 4, 2003
An out-of-towner drove his car into a ditch in a desolated area. Luckily, a local farmer came to help with his big strong horse, named Buddy. He hitched Buddy up to the car and yelled, "Pull, Nellie, pull!" Buddy didn't move.
Then the farmer hollered, "Pull, Buster, pull!" Buddy didn't respond.
Once more the farmer commanded, "Pull,
Then the farmer nonchalantly said, "Pull, Buddy, pull!" And the horse easily dragged the car out of the ditch.
The motorist was most appreciative and very curious. He asked the farmer why he called his horse by the wrong name three times.
The farmer said, "Oh, Buddy is blind and if he thought he was the only one pulling, he wouldn't even try."
The word of God is full of living power…. Hebrews 4:12
The good news is John is not alone. He’s not the only one pulling. His creator is watching over him. His family surrounds him daily speaking love and courage into him. Relatives, friends and strangers from afar send their love and prayers through out the days and nights. A little boy kneels by his bed in the soft cover of night bowing his wee head into folded hands and calls out to God….please make my daddy well. Just like the big strong horse pulled the car out of the ditch when he thought he had help so will the love and prayers of many pull John out of the ditch.