It never ceases to intrigue me how God orchestrates the details of our lives, crossing our paths with others on the precise day and at the exact time for His purposes. And so it was when we recently met this sweet family. They have graciously given me permission to share their story here.
Take a look at this precious little guy. It's impossible not to smile when you look at him, right? This is baby Nicholas. He is 8 months old and lives with his dad and his big sister Emily in Texas Hill Country. He is a very happy, busy baby. Like most babies his age, he is getting his first 2 teeth (see the drool?). But unlike most babies his age, Nicholas has cancer.
On July 4th, as his dad was playing with him, he noticed a lump on Nicholas' neck. After being seen by a doctor, Nicholas was diagnosed with mediastinal neuroblastoma, a cancer around the heart that can affect children. He had a tumor that ran from his neck to his heart. Doctors opted to try to reduce the size of the tumor with chemotherapy, with the hopes that the tumor would shrink enough for them to have a better shot of removing it with open heart surgery.
As you can imagine, this news hit hard. Nicholas' dad is a single dad, and he soon had to leave his job in order to take care of Nicholas with his many doctor's appointments, as well as to take care of his daughter Emily. He's doing a truly wonderful job trying to be a good dad to his young children.
He came to Light Shine Ministries, and they surrounded him with love and support. They got the greater community involved, and last night people from different churches and denominations joined together at a local church gym to host a benefit dinner to raise funds to help Nicholas' family with their expenses during this time.
We had a wonderful evening together and met many people from the community.
It also happened to be a week after big sister Emily's birthday, so we celebrated her special day with singing, gifts and cake.
And what was Sir Nicholas doing during his benefit dinner? Being cute, that's what. I couldn't get enough of him, and he loved the camera!
There are times when just coming around someone and loving them is the most valuable of all gifts. It's what Jesus does to each of us, and it's what we (as His hands and feet) do for others.
Having a birthday cake and some fun gifts delighted little Emily. Love comes in many languages.
This just looks like the yummiest thing to do with a frosting-smothered ribbon off the cake!
And did you really think that I could let the night escape without scooping up that bundle of joy into my own arms? And, oh how sweet babies smell! I held him and giggled with him and whispered prayers over Him. God has good plans for this little man, and I'm so very thankful that He allowed me to share in his journey. God always weaves together the details of our lives, and this is one part of the tapestry that I find exquisite.
And these teeny tiny toes... I can never ever resist the cuteness of baby feet!
Our Asian princess got in on the action too, as she adores babies. Look at this mutual love going on here! (Nicholas reallllllly wanted those pink glasses and the pink noise-canceling headphones!)
And how is Nicholas doing these days? Well, besides being really awesome on camera, he is also fighting cancer well. His tumor has been shrinking, and in a few weeks, they should know how this last round of chemo went. They expect that when the tumor is small enough, they will do open heart surgery. We'll see what amazing things God has in store. He is our Jehovah Rapha...our healer. I will post updates (and more cuteness) as we walk this road with Nicholas and his family.