Eugene Cho

an unexpected tumor

Update 10/30:  Received word last night that the surgery was completed and the tumor removed.  Craig is recovering.  However, there’s possibility of some very difficult news. Unfortunately, what was initially diagnosed as a benign tumor is likely cancerous – 80% probability according to the pathologist.  The complete diagnosis and pathology report will be released in 3 days. 

I have chosen to move the updates on Craig’s situation to the Quest Church community blog.  Because this blog receives its fair share of visitors and subscribers from all over, I prefer not to take the focus away from surrounding Craig and Betty with care and prayer.  Some comments were posted re: the authenticity or reality of prayer [and God] and while I’m a supporter of open dialogue, I’d rather not use this occassion or blog entry to pursue that.  Instead, I’d prefer to direct people to this blog entry, Does Your Prayer Work, which was written by one of the commenters on his blog, I believe, in response to this blog entry.  Feel free to engage there and be nice blokes.

And yes, I still invite you to join us in prayer for Craig and Betty.

****************************************************

I heard some not so good news about a congregant at church yesterday.  After hearing the news after the 2nd service, I called and went to visit Craig and Betty at their home to pray with them.

Craig is only in his 30s and a wonderful guy.  In the past couple weeks, Craig was experiencing some discomfort, dizziness, headaches, and general illness.  I actually remember chatting with Betty about it couple Sundays ago – it wasn’t that big of a deal. 

After couple visits to the doctors, Craig went once more just this past Friday for an MRI for some clarity to his illness.  And on Friday, he was told the reason why he was feeling so much discomfort and it was the absolute last thing he could have imagined.  He was told that there was a tumor in his brain and that he needed to consult a neurosurgeon ASAP.  And just like that, he is scheduled for surgery to remove that tumor in his brain this morning [Monday].

Such is life.  Unexpected events take place.  How will we respond?

Even under difficult circumstances, I enjoyed visiting and praying with Craig, Betty, and their children today.   Please join me in praying for them as Craig has surgery today.

Filed under: prayer, religion

17 Responses

  1. hughstan says:

    Have prayed for Craig, that the beauty of Christ will be real to him during this ordeal.

  2. Owen McLeod says:

    Didn’t you learn the first time you prayed?
    It didn’t work. He has a tumor.
    But yeah, keep praying. It’s only logical. *cough*

  3. Esther says:

    I had a benign tumor in my womb. I received prayer and it was still there. The doc asked me to come for the next possible date for surgery. However, just before, I went to a prayer meeting, where people prayed again. The next morning the doc examined me and he could not understand it: The tumor was gone! I told him that this is due to prayer. He said that he does not understand it but the real fact is: the tumor is GONE! Not logical, but real!

  4. Kim Aliczi says:

    Owen – what a mean thing to say! 😦
    Mean people truly do suck. Whether you believe in prayer or not, geez – what an awful thing to say and what a sad, sad way to live, kicking people when they’re down. Unbelievable!

  5. Keren says:

    yeah, i don’t know owen and wouldn’t have said what he said, but i understand that he probably just hasn’t experienced the power of prayer yet. although, prayers haven’t always been answered in the way that i want them too, i find that prayer just changes me and am so surprised sometimes. so, yes, let’s keep praying!

  6. e cho says:

    owen: yes, he has a tumor. and he’s in great spirits and surrounded by family, friends, and community that are praying for him and his family and the surgery.

    yes, we’ll keep praying and take care of that cough.

  7. Father God, i pray that your Kingdom come to Craig’s life, that you are with him during the surgery and that your healing hand conforts him while he recuperates. In the name of your beloved Son Jesus Christ, amen.

  8. Beth says:

    Owen:
    discursive reason (“logic”) is necessary but not sufficient for the full flourishing of our intellect–indeed, of our humanity. It is the lie of modernism to think that it is sufficient; and the lie of postmodernism to think that it is not necessary.

    So even as I pray for Craig, I pray that the Lord might use him to make this tangible for you, and thus show you something of who we can be in Christ.

    Eugene:

    May the Lord use you to offer His head, heart and hands to both Craig and Owen.

  9. Owen McLeod says:

    My statement still stands.
    The responses offered to my comment were no more than a display of the habitual ‘safety in numbers’.
    You may keep praying, I obviously can’t stop you.
    Although, while you’re praying on Sundays for health, charities, and all those other unfortunate things, there will be doctors and other people who are actually making a difference.
    I did find interesting the post by Keren:
    “although, prayers haven’t always been answered in the way that i want them too, i find that prayer just changes me and am so surprised sometimes. so, yes, let’s keep praying!”
    This is correct. While prayer doesn’t really offer you the response you want, it will make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. So I guess that prayer does have a use.
    Just like meditation.

  10. e cho says:

    owen: you bring up good questions. it’s good to think critically.

    people are simply questioning your tact in addressing them as the person i bring up on this post is in brain surgery right now. that’s it. you get it?

    you have the freedom to have your beliefs and enjoy your life in australia.
    it’s a good discussion so let’s discuss it on your blog where you’ve brought up the topic:

    http://owenmcleod.wordpress.com/2007/10/29/does-your-prayer-work/

  11. billwp says:

    As I write (having just now read the above), it is late Monday evening. I don’t know if your friend survived the operation or not.

    It is too late to ask that his surgeons be granted insight, skill and focus. I can’t pray for a speedy recovery. I can’t pray that those who mourn him be comforted. But I can pray that Jehovah’s will be done. This is the prayer Jesus offered when he was about to face his own brutal murder. I can pray that Jehovah strengthen those whose lives he has touched, as, no matter what the outcome of the surgery, they are under strain.

    If your friend did not survive, I remind you of the hope of resurrection. If he did survive; I would remind him of the hope of resurrection … to put it before himself so that when the day comes where the sun rises but he does not, his rest will not be eternal but will be broken by a renewed call to life.

    As Jesus said: “not my will, but thine”.

  12. billwp says:

    It has been my frequent experience that most of my prayers have been answered before I even prayed. That is, unbeknown to me, the answers were already in progress before I made my concerns known in prayer.

    That is analogous to the experience Daniel reported when the angel informed Daniel that he would have been there sooner but he had been delayed by conflict until he had gotten help on the battlefield. (Daniel 10:12-14)

    There are all sorts of explanations for that. Social scientists have had a field day on that topic for centuries.

    Yet, faced with problems I could not solve, I have asked for divine assistance and watched as superlative answers have unfolded without any further direct assistance from me.

  13. Esther says:

    I apologize. Sharing about God’s healing in my case sounded insensitive in the face of a surgery for brain tumor. My intention was to instill HOPE and the FOCUS that yes, God DOES answer prayer. Prayer matters, even though God often may choose a DIFFERENT way of responding to our prayers. My prayers have been with Craig and his family. I do not know them personally, but Got has stirred my heart deeply. I know from experience how much we need each other in painful and difficult times. Please let us know how Betty is holding up.

  14. e cho says:

    hey folks:
    updated the situation with craig. he’s out of surgery but still needs our thoughts, cares, and prayers. i’ll be updating @ http://seattlequest.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/prayer-for-craig/ from here on out.

    you can go to owen’s blog to continue a good dialogue,

    ESTHER: absolutely no need to apologize. thanks for sharing your testimony.

  15. […] 11.22..26 and the question if prayer works or not. Incidentally a similar discussion takes place at Seattle Quest. This Sunday we’ll hash through these troublesome sayings of Jesus and try to figure out what […]

  16. […] down and hopeless” Couple weeks ago, I posted a request for prayer for one of my congregants named Craig.  I recall dropping by his home to pray for him and his wife, […]

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Collaboration.

col·lab·o·ra·tion
kəˌlabəˈrāSH(ə)n/
noun

the action of working with someone or a group of others  to produce or create something.

May we hold our logos, egos, and tribalism have their place. May we hold them loosely for they too shall pass. May we collaborate for the sake of the greater Kingdom of God ... which endures forever. As we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., don't forget the God behind the man. The one true God who deposited this dream into MLK is still speaking to us today. Are we listening?

Be courageous. Be brave.

Being invited by the King Family to speak at the MLK worship service at Ebenezer Baptist Church in 2016 remains one of the most unexpected honors of my life. On the right is his daughter, Dr. Bernice King and his sister, Dr. Christine King Farris. Walking throughstreet markets in different parts of the world is the best. Soaking in the culture. Listening to the local language and music. Enjoying the amazing cuisine. Meeting new friends. Praying for the Gospel to penetrate. #ChiangRai Blessed be the local, indigenous leaders for it is they who live in the very communities they seek to love. For it is they who understand their context and culture...better than a Westerner ever will. For it is they who will continue to tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love when visitors like me leave.

Yes, blessed be the local, indigenous leaders. What an honor and privilege to celebrate with the on-the-ground local @thefreedomstory team to celebrate the recent opening of their Education and Resource Center for the local youth in Chiang Rai, Thailanf. This was made possible through a partnership and matching grant by @onedayswages and The Freedom Story.

While it was an honor to be there to cut the cord and say a few words, this is an example of collaboration. Much love to the Freedom Story team including their co-founders Tawee Donchai and @Rachel Goble, to their staff who live in the community, who understand their context and culture, and who tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love. And of course, much love to the students themselves for they each matter. Finally, to each person that donated to @onedayswages to make this grant possible.

May hundreds and even thousands of youth be impacted, encouraged, and mentored. May they capture a glimpse of God's love for them.

Photo: @benjaminedwards Part 2 on my wrestling with the complex issue of human trafficking. In part, documenting my trip to Thailand for @onedayswages...to listen, learn, and visit one of our partner orgs @thefreedomstory. More to come.

There's such painful and poignant irony in pursuing justice...unjustly. One way we do this is when we reduce people into projects...and thus, propagating the dangerous power dynamic of US as heroes and THEM as helpless and exclusively as victims. So dangerous.

Human trafficking is not just an issue. It’s ultimately, about people. Depending on the sources of statistics, there are anywhere from 29-40 million people in some form of forced labor and slavery, including sex trafficking.

And one thing I’ve learned, personally, is how easy it is easy to reduce people into projects which is why mutuality, reciprocity, and dignity are so vital. These are critical because God never intended people to be reduced into projects.

We forget this and we indirectly foster a culture and system of victimization or worse, the pornification of the poor or in this case, "the trafficked." And when you start dehumanizing the poor or trafficked, you have no genuine desire to build relationships with them. You believe or build stereotypes in broad strokes, singular, black and white narratives that have been told about them. You believe the lie that they have nothing to teach us and are incapable of contributing to the larger society.

Lord, break our hearts for the things that break your heart. Give us eyes to see others through your eyes. Give us humility so that we acknowledge our own need to learn and grow. (Photo via @thefreedomstory)

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