Updates & Prayer for Ginny Smith

June 16, 2007

June 16 Update

Filed under: Uncategorized — by ginnysmith @ 2:47 pm

Dear family & friends,

Since our last update there is much to be gateful for. Let me share the many reasons why:

  1. First we are overwhelmed with the love and care of so many. Your expressions of kindness continue to encourage and lift our spirits.  We’ve enjoyed meals of every imaginable kind….home prepared build a burger, comfort food casaroles, mexican enchaladas, persian cuisine, chinese dinners, italian pizzas not to mention beef & pork roasts & ribs, ham dinners as well as wonderful tossed and pasta salads. Every time we sit down to eat one of these meals we give thanks for the giver and the love behind them.  This has encouraged us in so many ways.

  2. We are encouraged by the hundreds of cards and letters that just keep coming in. Some of you have sent several cards so that the effect of caring keeps on going day after day. 

  3. We are encouraged by the progress Ginny is making. The cancer is reluctantly fighting back yet retreating with the chemo. Blood tests affirm this.  And because the cancer is dimenishing her pain is dimenishing as well.  A few weeks ago Ginny was wearing three pain patches and taking break through medications every four hours.  Today she is not taking any pain medication and  has reduced her pain patches down to one.  This has encouraged us all.

  4. We were encouraged last Tuesday by hearing she is a candidate for a proceedure on the spine that should help fortify four places on her spine.  The date has been set for June 25th. This proceedure (“kephoplasty”) will require an overnight stay at Saddleback Hospital in Laguna Hills. This is being done to help prevent further compression of her spine. She has numerous lesions or erosions through out her spine but this is also an attempt not only to help elieviate her pain but also prevent further damage to her brittle bones. Ginny is getting pretty good using her walker. If possible she walks in front of our house three times a day with the help of a walker and a companion.

  5. We are encouraged by the women who have formed a team to help us five days a week. They tend to our every need. This has encouraged Ginny beyond explanation. They show their love to her in so many ways.  They take her to the doctor for regular chemo treatments as well as walk with her and care for her. This has really helped me get back into the daily routine of my ministry. As they help Ginny they are ministering to me and my pastorate.

  6. We are deeply encouraged by our family. Our daughters tend to us in so many ways… grocery shopping, helping their mom get ready for bed, taking her to the doctor, brining by the grandchildren and “therapy dog”.  For Father’s Day they invited me to join them on a picnic at a local park overlooking the ocean.  I was able to sit down and just enjoy being with my kids, sons n laws and my grandkids. They are my true delight. They each designed and drew Father’s Day cards for me. Hallmark couldn’t say what that meant to me. Ginny and I are so blessed to be so loved.

  7. We are encouraged by having “Dorthy from Kansas” (her sister) this week.  She joyfully took many of my duties and showered her sister with TLC. They are a team to be reckoned with.  “Dottie” came in with a whirlwind and will leave on a plane Monday.  We will miss her BIG  TIME!

  8. We were encouraged last Sunday night when Ginny was able to attend our church choir concert. Eventhough we were unable to be there through the entire concert it was a delight. Ginny wanted to show her love and appreciation to the church, the choir and all those who minister alongside me. 

 On Monday next week, Lord willing, Ginny hopes to return to her school before the school year ends to see the children in her class. It will be a very touching day for us all. It is a farewell to the children as well as a farewell to 23 years of teaching.  Its hard to watch all these things come to a sudden and abrupt end but we are also hopeful to enjoy uncertain days ahead together. On July 3rd we will be celebrating 44 years of marriage! I fondly think back over those years giving thanks for every year we’ve had together. What an adventure! How blessed to have each other! How blessed to be a pastor! How blessed to have our family & grandkids! How blessed to have the Lord!

As you think of us be in prayer as we learn to persevere. Our goal is to get the myeloma in remission so we can have a stemcell transplant for her by October. In the mean time we are taking one day at a time…encouraged by you and blessed by the Lord.

Yearning for Christ

Don & Ginny




  1. I am happy to read the news of Mrs. Smith’s progress! Nicole and I read your letters and appreciate the time it takes to keep everyone up to date. We look forward to seeing our favorite 3rd grade teacher at school on Monday!
    The Thee Family

    Comment by Patricia Thee — June 16, 2007 @ 9:39 pm |Reply

  2. You are indeed blessed, Don and Ginny, and I feel so excited for you with this good news and grateful to God for listening to all our prayers. I check this site almost daily to read the comments and couldn’t wait to get home tonight to see if there was a news posting. Ginny, you are making amazing progress, reduced meds, reduced pain, almost ready for a walk around the block, choir concert, and school on Monday. I wish I could be at Valencia to see you. Know that I will be thinking of you then and I can only imagine all the positive electricity that will be flowing through school. You will take with you all the love and caring of the last 23 years that you have received from all those children, parents, fellow teachers, staff, and administrators, not to mention the effect that you have had on their lives. This time next year you will probably be subbing for one of your 3rd grade team members. Ginny, I am filled with such happiness that you are doing so well. I know God will continue to bless you with improved health and sustain the wonderful people who surround you daily – women helping women. God bless your wonderful husband, daughters, sons-in-law, grandchildren and dog. Happy Father’s Day Don! With continued love and prayers, Rose

    Comment by Rose Dowling — June 17, 2007 @ 3:28 am |Reply

  3. Hello Don and Ginny!

    I am so happy to read about Ginny’s progress and that her pain has lessened. I just checked my messages and couldn’t believe you had called me! The fact that you thought to take the time to make that call to thank us in the midst of all that is going on, is such a testament to your kind and loving heart! I am praying that you will make it to school tomorrow. I know it will mean so much to so many. Don, I wanted to thank you too for dedicating our son today. It meant so much to have you up there with us, as you have been with all of our children. May God continue to give you strength, peace and more good news!!
    With much love,
    The Craycraft’s

    Comment by Shannon Craycraft — June 18, 2007 @ 3:56 am |Reply

  4. Hi Don and Ginny,

    I finally got on your website. I had the wrong address for awhile and couldn’t find you.

    You all have been in our constant prayers. I have been very busy getting the word out. I sent all your info. to Cordillera and am now in the process of sending it to the retired teachers at Cordillera. I have put you on Saddleback Church prayer chain every week. I contacted Christy Miller and her family. They are all praying for you. I gave a copy of your web news to Maggie B. last week. She did not have it, and was so grateful!
    I was so surprised or shocked would be a better word, when I heard about your illness the week you left school. I do miss out on a lot of news because I am only in and out of my schools. Usually, I have so much business to get done while I’m there, that I don’t have a lot of time to visit. I could see you walking into music the week before. I would have had no clue how much pain you must have been in! You were so brave and uncomplaining.

    About 8 years ago I was diagnosed with throat cancer. I had a leision about the size of a 1/2 dime. I was diagnosed on Friday and scheduled for surgery for the next Thur. I went through the whirlwind of tests, 2nd opinions etc. A dear teacher friend who was battling cancer came up to me on Monday, and shared with me this thought which was so uplifting to me at one of my most down times that I can remember ever being in. She said: “Diana, it used to be that people died with cancer, but today people live with cancer so fight the good fight. There are a lot of us survivers out there.” On Tues. night before my preop, I went before the Lord in total submission. I invisioned Abraham laying his son on the alter. I laid my voice on the alter that night and said: “Lord, you gave me this voice and I have tried to use it for Your glory. If I loose it, I know that You will find a way for me to go on and be productive. Lord, I ask for Your will, not mine.” I only had one grand child at that time, and the thoughts of not being able to sing lullabyes to her or teach music were almost unbearable. The next day when I went in for my preop the leision was gone. I did not have to have surgery and even though my voice has never been totally back, I can still sing. I still have to have regular check ups. In my heart, I know that I had a miracle healing. The doctor said so too…although many people say that it just must have been a misdiagnosis. I know that just like the blind man, who said,”I was blind and now I see.” I can say: “I couldn’t sing and now I can.”

    Ginny, we don’t know why we have to go through these times, but we do know that God will use it for good things. Already the wittness that you have had to others is amazing! Your story is bringing hope to many people. Many are coming before the Lord daily in prayer for you. Know that we all love you so dearly.

    Your web site is so wonderful! Now I can pray specifically
    for your needs. Jack and I are praying for you every night and morning. Sometimes during the day, I send up “arrow prayers” for you.

    May God bless you and yours and all those who are ministering to you and those waging the war and figuring out the battle plan for you. It is amazing all they can do.

    Know that you are loved and covered with prayer. Have a blessed day.

    In Christ’s love,
    Jack and Diana Cranny

    Comment by Diana Cranny — June 18, 2007 @ 2:24 pm |Reply

  5. Ginny, it was lovely to hear your voice on my answer machine when I got home last night. That was so sweet of you to call. You have been in my and my family’s prayers since we heard of your illness and it is wonderful to hear you are doing so well, especially the lessening of the pain.

    Don, your sermons are always so right on and this series is such a special blessing. Thank you for reminding us of God’s awesome love and care for us all and showing us the strength He provides.

    God bless you both,
    Linda Wilson

    Comment by Linda Wilson — June 18, 2007 @ 5:55 pm |Reply

  6. Ginny,
    I have been checking the website often to follow your progress and was very encouraged to read that things are improving. I think of you daily and we pray for your recovery. Our daughter Erin has included you in the prayer chain at her church. Patrick sends his best and hopes that you feel better soon. Valencia will certainly miss you. I feel so fortunate that two of my children were lucky enough to have you as a teacher. Keep fighting the good fight .
    Love and blessings,

    Comment by Nancy Sullivan — June 19, 2007 @ 3:40 am |Reply

  7. Ginny, it’s wonderful to hear you’re doing so well. We continue to pray for you!!! Don, what a blessing it is to have you in the pulpit each week. We are thankful for those beautiful women the Lord has blessed with gracious and loving servants hearts to come and tend to Ginny so you can do the work the Lord has called you to. It is a true blessing to our family. We are amazed each week at what the Lord is doing. We love you and your family so much!
    our thoughts and prayers,
    Carlos, Tavia and kids

    Comment by The Reyes Family — June 19, 2007 @ 5:51 am |Reply

  8. Dear Jesus,

    Please be with Don and Ginny today. Please give them Your peace which passes all understanding. Please give them the strength and wisdom to walk through today’s events. Please send encouragers when needed and grant them healing rest. Amen

    Comment by Diana Cranny — June 20, 2007 @ 1:24 pm |Reply

  9. Hi Ginny and Don,
    It is so great to read the loving comments and prayers for you. We pray for you daily and I thank God he answers prayer and your pain is less.We will be praying for June 25th- that you can have that surgery.
    Psalm 145:8-9- The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all,he has compassion on all he has made.
    Love and prayers,Jack and Bonnie

    Comment by Bonnie George — June 22, 2007 @ 2:01 pm |Reply

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