Mike - SAusmus Photography

Mike: After the Collapse, 3/20/15

I haven’t known where I am the last two weeks. Literally. I came to a hospital I’ve never been to before via the front seat of an ambulance; whisked through an emergency room entrance.

When the girls sent me home a few days later, it was like feeling my way through a dark room in the middle of the night.  Finding my way out of Saint Joseph’s tower, through a maze of cream-colored hallways, across a land bridge, and into a concrete parking lot was no small feat by myself. Thankfully, once in my car, a few turns put me on a straight shot to our neighborhood.

Even though our house is ten minutes from Saint Joe’s, the road to the hospital was an all new prospect.  The next morning, still by myself,  I realized that I didn’t know how to get back … just that the hospital is a tower on the hill and doesn’t have many other big buildings around it.  Bending to look through my windshield, I saw the tower and its brightly lit cross. The soft blue light flowed into the darkness and lit my way in that pre-dawn hour.

Saint Josephs Hospital in Tacoma … a reminder that the Cross lights the way. If you squint, you can see the cross.

The cross on top of our hospital encouraged more than one of us in the family.  Our international student, a very young Christian who hails from China, wrote this note to Mike (printed with permission):

Dear Dad:
When I came to this hospital. I saw a giant cross on the top of the building, which means God is watching you and taking care of you, right?
I just talked to you;  I know you heard me and I know you’ll be better pretty soon. We’re all waiting for you.  God loves you.  He’ll make you recover soon.
Love you. Charlotte

Every verse … every note … every song … every text, every email, every whisper of encouragement … we’ve hung onto every word. They have all pointed us to the cross.

Looking through some pictures that I took just a few weeks ago, I realized that one of my favorite walks affords a wonderful view of Saint Joseph’s.  I’m not feeling so lost these days, but it may well be that as we stand in persistent prayer for Mike’s heart to continue to strengthen and for the tumor to lessen, that I may need to take that walk and  look up again  … and again … and again at that cross on a hill.  How wonderful that it rests on a building that represents healing.  I may need to fix my gaze in that direction as one more reminder of where our help full comes from.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
    where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth.

We have come a long ways in 12 days.

Property of sausmus.com
Trusting God in a dark time. Taken March 11, 2015


Taken at 4:00 this morning (March 21st), Mike sits reading the "guest book" created while he was in his coma.  Our best day yet, so far.  So much laughter and praise coming from him.
Taken at 4:00 this morning (March 21st), Mike sits reading the “guest book” created while he was in his coma. Our best day yet. So much laughter and praise coming from him.

It might surprise you to know that my tendency is to be a fairly private person, but we continue to share openly our story and photos like these because what has happened in these last weeks has been far beyond us. This is your story too, because you are standing with us for God’s will and wonder to be at work.  We remain awed … and grateful … beyond words.





10 thoughts on “Mike: After the Collapse, 3/20/15

  1. Thank you so much for sharing. I look every day for updates so I know how to pray that day for Mike and your family. It’s so awesome to see God answering prayer right before our eyes. I believe that what the enemy meant for destruction, God will use for his glory! Mike has a call on his life that can not be stopped! We love you guys!!

  2. I’m still speechless at the merciful hand of God
    You are so loved sausmus.♡ thank you for your modeling discipline mentoring us during your tough times I’m just

    God is so Good

  3. God is Good All The Time!!!!! We are soooo thankful to see him up and smiling!! Can’t wait to give him a big hug!

  4. Thank you for sharing!!! Praise God for ALL that He has done in the past 12 days….. truly miraculous!!!!! Thank you for sharing it with us. What an encouragement!

  5. I love that Mike was reading his guest book. I also agree, Shelly, that your words and your journey with Mike through this time have been so inspiring and god-honoring. Thank you for opening up your lives to us, your FB friends.

  6. Shelly,
    You are an inspiration to us all. Mike has become close to me without him even knowing me! My church is praying for you all!

  7. Shelley,
    I was so worried when I first saw the headline of Mike’s collapse on social media, I almost didn’t follow the link for fear of what I would find. I am so glad to hear he is recovering so well! Best wishes to your entire family. This journey has been a story in the bonds of love and faith. Thank you for sharing it so openly.

  8. Shelly, your journey and thoughts are so beautifully written and so encouraging and humble, just like you. Your life is a testimony to the Lord’s love and faithfulness. It’s obvious that His Word is the anchor of your soul and the source of your hope and strength. I’m so thankful that Mike is doing so much better! God has heard all of our prayers and cries and will complete what He has started.

    I wish that I could be there near you to give you a big hug. Please know that I love you very much and am continuing to pray for Mike’s complete healing and for Jesus’ abundant grace and joy to uphold you and strengthen you. May He give you fresh faith for the journey ahead.


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