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  • Writer's pictureStephanie

Pushing at an open door

Open doors

Years ago I saw the movie Amazing Grace in theaters. It tells the true story of William Wilberforce and his fight to end the slave trade throughout the British empire. It is one of the most powerful movies I have ever seen and is one I regularly rewatch. This past fall I read a biography on Wilberforce and my immense admiration for him grew even more.

Wilberforce was a man of great convictions, who refused to back down in his fight for what he knew to be right. He dealt with intense health battles, political opposition, attacks on his character and yet he persisted.

In the movie, we are given a glimpse into the friendship between Wilberforce and Prime Minister Pitt. Pitt faced his own health battles, and on his deathbed we see him encouraging Wilberforce. He tells him that the political tide is turning and that the next time Wilberforce presents his antislavery bill, he will be "pushing at an open door." This scene always brings me to tears. After eighteen years, Wilberforce was finally going to see his dream come true. Slavery was finally going to be abolished.

Yesterday I was thinking about something and suddenly the phrase "pushing at an open door" dropped into my spirit.

I believe this word is for me. I believe this is a word for my heath, that I have battled for for years with my prayers, my tears (surgery update below). But I believe it is a word for more than just me. I believe there are many of us right now finding ourselves in a season of asking "How much longer, God?" God has not given up on you. He has not given up on your situation. He has not given up on our country. He has not given up on His church. Keep pressing, keep praying, keep believing. One of these days, and I pray it is soon, you will be pushing at an open door.

Updates and Prayer Requests:

  • I am having a Linx device put in to help with my GERD. I will also have my hiatal hernia repaired at this time. Surgery is scheduled for Tuesday, February 2nd, first thing in the morning (I won't find out the exact time until Monday afternoon).

  • Tomorrow I will go to the hospital for pre-op bloodwork and a chest x-ray. I have already seen my cardiologist and been given clearance on that front. Saturday I will go for a COVID test.

  • I have several specific prayer requests - if you could partner with me in praying for these things, I would be so incredibly grateful!

  1. I will be going into surgery (and having to do recovery, possibly overnight) without Ricky. This has caused a good deal of anxiety in me. Pray for peace and the assurance that God is with me at all times!

  2. I do not handle anesthesia well. Of the five procedures I have had that required anesthesia, three of them resulted in me feeling incredibly nauseous and dizzy for hours and sometimes days afterward. Please pray that I am able to communicate this to my anesthesiologist, that they have wisdom in how to proceed and I am able to recover easily.

  3. The surgery is being performed laparoscopically, which will require carbon dioxide gas to inflate my abdomen. My surgeon (Dr. R) explained that this causes pain in the shoulders, neck and chest area for a few weeks after surgery. Please pray for this pain to be manageable.

  4. "Physical therapy" after a Linx procedure is eating every hour, to keep the device from scarring into a fixed position. Please pray my nausea is not so intense that I struggle to eat and that I am able to swallow easily, without choking. Pray I find foods that are easy to eat and settle well in my stomach.

  5. In most cases, dilation after this surgery is not necessary. But because my esophagus is so bad Dr. R has already told me he believes I will need to come back 1-2 months after surgery for this procedure. To try to get the best fit possible, Dr. R is going to have several Linx reps in the OR to help with this process. Please pray that they pick the right size and it works from day 1!

  6. Recovery from this surgery can take up to six months. Please pray for a quicker recovery and for me not to get discouraged if it does take six months.

  7. Please pray for wisdom for my entire medical team, myself and my family throughout this process!

All my love,

To learn more about William Wilberforce:


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