Sunday, June 27, 2010


Medical training can be roughly split into two halves.

The first is composed of learning the seemingly impossible complexities of how the human body works. From a biochemical level upward to whole organ systems, there are details that would require the most hardened cynic to not see the fingerprint of an almighty God who knit us together with an unfathomably delicate touch.

The second involves learning how this perfection of creation can be assaulted. It is time in the hospital working with people who are afflicted in ways that just don't seem fair. Nowhere is that disconnect more glaring than when kids get sick. It is during those times that it requires the most hardened faith to still see God's hand working in the details.

My niece Ava is one of the best people I have ever met. She has a tumor in her brain. One cell, at some point, just kept multiplying because one gene, out of 100,000 or so, isn't working to tell it to stop. And now it is up to us, the believers who trust in a God who loves us, to steel up our faith and ask to see God's hand still working in the details.

God still does miracles. The same God that knit those genes together out of 3,000,000,000 base pairs of DNA into 46 chromosomes for the first man He made can fix any of them at any time. He asks us for faith. Faith that has seen what the devil can do and then stands defiant in a belief that God still rules this world and can hold us together when we can't to it ourselves. Pray for Ava. God still hears us and He is still in the details.

Matthew 21:21: Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not can say to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and it will be done."


  1. Joel,

    Your words and your faith are not in vain. Be strong and take heart, for your hope is in the LORD. He hears you, He is with you, and He is mighty to save.

    Thanks for your honest expression. Your faith is evident and your courage real. God is already being glorified.

    Praying with you,

  2. Joel,

    I'm sure that all your knowledge and experience will be of inestimable value to Josh and Lisa as they try to absorb all the information that is being thrown at them - more especially in the waiting time when there is nothng to be done but tests, recovery and prayer. Cancer is a nightmare that makes your former life feel like a dream that was never real. But when you get through it, normal days are an unbelievable gift.

    There's nothing good to say about a vicious tumor picking the most innocent, impish, delightful little girl to wreak havoc upon, and I know that any of you would take it for her in a second if thatcould be done.

    One day at a time, and Ava will be more than a conqueror. F cancer.

  3. Love your perspective Joel. Thanks for sharing and reminding us that nothing is too big for the awesome God we love and serve. Praying for your entire family. I know He is hearing us all and loves that sweet Ava more than anyone.
    With love,
    Greg & Kristen Mikesell

  4. Prayers are going up and the faithfulness that your family is exemplifying in this time is nothing short of amazing. We are praying for you and Ava and all of the Hunter family.

  5. Joel

    We are praying for all of you and standing with you for the healing for Ava.

    Leanne & Jim Capobianco

  6. Hi Joel, I guess you got married :) We are a little out of touch :) Congrats on your baby, and know we are praying for Ava!

    We have seen God's hand so much going through Lon's cancer journey. Even in the darkest days, there was that sense of His being there!
    Lon & Val