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Through It All by Andre Crouch

The Time for Miracles


      During our visit to Europe in the Autumn of 1999 and during the first half of 2000, my wife Sallie was experiencing discomfort in her lower back area. She never disclosed this to anyone as she hoped the pain would disappear at some point. In May 2000, Sallie told me about the pain and at the end of the month we sought help from her General Practice physician. Initially he was unable to diagnose the problem. Throughout June Sallie underwent testing but there was no diagnosis of the problem. In July another physician recommended she have a CT scan of her lower back and abdominal area; the scan revealed a 9cm tumor (the size of a grapefruit) on her left kidney. Her GP then advised her that she had a choice as to where she could seek treatment: either the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, VA, or The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, MD. We chose Johns Hopkins because of its reputation as the premier medical center in the United States and its proximity to our home (75 miles). The doctor assured us of a positive outcome.

     Our initial meeting with the urologist, Dr. Ronald Rodriguez, took place the first week of August at the Brady Urological Institute of The Johns Hopkins Hospital. During the meeting after Sallie’s examination, Dr. Rodriguez told us that hers was a very unusual case because of the size and location of the tumor. He mentioned that Sallie would need to undergo additional testing at Hopkins (CT scan, MRI and Nuclear bone scan). If the bone scan was positive then surgery could not be performed and treatment would not be possible. It was devastating to realize that if the cancer had spread to her bones there would not be any possibility of treatment.

     I can recall returning home that Friday, walking into my bedroom and feeling utterly helpless… like being alone in a desert and not knowing what direction to go nor how to get out safely. Was it possible to be saved from this desolate place? At that moment I got down on my knees and prayed to the Lord. Calling upon His name "El Shaddai" (which means God Almighty/The All Sufficient God), I prayed for Him to deliver us from this and I placed our frail humanity in His powerful arms. Only He had the power to fight this horrible situation; we may have been powerless, but we knew that our Lord was all-powerful in everything.