On November 17th, 2019, Mark Brewster shares his ongoing testimony of health issues and trusting in God that He will continue to heal.
RE: MARK’S TESTIMONY OF GOD’S PROTECTION 2019
Good morning everyone. It’s a privilege and a blessing to speak to you today. I want to thank my wife, Linda, who helped prepare these notes.
This story about me starts at the end of February this year, after my wife, Linda, fell on ice & broke her left elbow, which required immediate surgery, 4 pins installed permanently, plus taking her to weekly physio appointments for a few months. – This ordeal brought us closer together, and closer to the Lord Jesus. We prayed for each other more regularly and were very thankful for the great support from family, friends and the body of Christ.
Near the end of March, I started feeling congested and very tired, like I had a virus. I work as a tax manager at an accounting firm and the extra busy “tax season” had JUST started mid-March and would continue until April 30th.
On Saturday April 6th, we went to church in the evening. Pastor Howard preached. My wife, Linda, noticed that I had closed my eyes during Howard’s teaching and was kind of alarmed by that and thought I must have been extremely exhausted! After the service, Linda went up for prayer for her elbow and arm, and also asked for prayer for me. That night, I had a very high temperature and was sweating so profusely, I had to change my top and put a towel over wet sheets on my side of the bed. By morning, the high temperature and sweating had stopped.
For a couple of weeks, I continued to have night sweats and feel very exhausted. I went to work, came home & went to bed early. I worked from home on the weekends and didn’t take any “sick days”.
I was busy with work and thought I just had a virus that would pass and didn’t realize it was anything serious. Linda continued to pray for me & request prayer for me from the pastor and various friends.
On “Good Friday” April 19th, Linda had a brief dream about me that morning: in the dream, she noticed something odd about my face, like I was having a stroke, so she was going to call for an ambulance. She decided to tell me about the dream, and then we prayed together for God to heal and protect me. I noticed that while Linda was telling me about the dream, I felt a warmth come over my body. Linda sent an e-mail to Pastor Howard and asked him about all of this – he replied quickly and commented that this was a good sign, and said that he’d pray for my healing and protection right away too. Linda also contacted some other friends who had been praying for me and told them about this dream and requested more prayer for me.
On April 25th, I was still having a high fever at night & sweating profusely. Linda called and spoke with an “on call” nurse at about 3:30 a.m. that night and she got me to talk to him. After reviewing my symptoms with the nurse, I agreed to make an appointment with our doctor and saw her the next day. After her examination, she concluded I had a sinus infection and prescribed antibiotics, and also sent me for a chest x-ray and blood test due to my symptoms. The following Monday, she called to tell me the x-ray showed a nodule in my lungs and that she and the Radiologist had concluded I had pneumonia! I was surprised to find out I was so sick.
I persevered through the April 30th tax deadline and then I took some time off. During May, I tried to rest and take it easy. I went to bed early every night. I started to feel better as time went by and, near the end of May, I was finally able to stay up to watch some of the exciting Raptors games!
Near the end of May, my doctor called & asked me to arrange for a follow-up x-ray to check if my lungs were cleared up. A couple of days after having the x-ray, she called to tell me the x-ray showed the nodule in my lungs was still there and she arranged for me to have a CAT scan a week later.
On Friday June 7th, I went to my appointment for the CAT scan. After the procedure was completed, I was told to wait until they advised me I could leave. They wanted to ensure I didn’t have any side effects from the dye injection. After a while, I was told they wanted me to meet with a doctor to receive the results of the test. I was taken to the Urgent Care Centre and admitted. I met with a doctor who advised me the CAT scan showed “an unusually high number” of blood clots in my lungs. I really didn’t know what to make of this news but I was at peace.
The doctor advised me they found no underlying issues that are usually associated with blood clots in the lungs such as cancer. Also, I had not had any of the usual symptoms of blood clots in the lungs – no shortness of breath, and no chest pain during all this time.
Some other tests were done – EKG, bedside ultra-sound, etc. – and all my vital signs were good. They then took some blood to run more tests. After a couple of hours, a nurse gave me a shot of blood thinner through my abdomen & the doctor gave me a prescription for blood thinners; and he arranged for me to see a hematologist (blood specialist) “as soon as possible”.
A couple of days later, at church, Pastor Howard greeted me and said “I heard about your great report.” I didn’t understand this as I was quite concerned about the blood clots in my lungs and having to take blood thinners. However, I later realized he was referring to the fact I didn’t have cancer. This was something to be thankful for in spite of my diagnosis.
The next day, the hematologist’s office called and asked me to come in. I met with the hematologist who advised me I had not had pneumonia but had suffered an “infarction” in my lungs (- He explained that this is like a heart attack for your heart, but in your lungs – cells had died because of lack of oxygen – but, those cells can regenerate). He also advised they didn’t know the cause of the blood clots, so I may need to take blood thinners “indefinitely”.
The dream God had given Linda of me having a stroke on April 19th was over a month and a half before the doctors detected the “unusually high number of blood clots” in my lungs on June 7th! God knew, well in advance of us knowing, the real, underlying problem that was causing my symptoms since April, and that we needed to pray for my healing and protection from having a stroke!
My wife and I are so thankful for God’s omniscience, that He goes before us, for His protection & for His sustaining power. We are also grateful for our very caring & gracious pastor & his regular prayers for both of us; as well as the prayers & generosity of many friends and members of our church, including the prayer teams! Also, for our doctor, Victoria, who had the wisdom to send me for x-rays and a CAT scan, and our local hospitals and specialists.
Early this year, in January when Pastor Howard advised our church of his health news, I had a dream about Pastor Howard walking along beside me with his arm around me. Perhaps this dream had to do with us both walking “the same road”, facing health crises, and praying for each other.
We believe it is God’s will to completely dissolve & remove all of those blood clots from my lungs, and to restore my health completely, so I will not have to continue taking blood thinners.
In closing, I would like to share a scripture passage – Psalm 5:11-12:
But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name, be joyful in You.
For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous;
With favour You will surround him as with a shield.