This past week was a very interesting and frustrating one. March 23 was Easter. That Sunday was wonderful. Our church had its Sunrise Service which was centered on the empty tomb and the solid Rock of Jesus Christ. This was followed with a breakfast of biscuits and gravy, sausage and pancakes. Then came the morning worship and a wonderful Easter celebration focusing on the rush that Easter gives us as we rush from the darkness of death to the light of life, from dwelling on the past to rejoicing in the future, and from the appearance of religion to the reality of Christ.

Then came Tuesday, March 25. After exulting in the resurrection of Christ I had to deal with the ten year anniversary of the sudden and unexpected death of my father. His passing had a profound effect on my life. It raised some issues that I finally got a grip on in the past two years. Unsettled situations and raging doubts can nag a soul to spiritual drought and eventually death, but only if one allows them to do so. I had to get some things straight in order to get them resolved. With the anniversary of his death came only the pain of not having him here with me now, and nothing more.

Then the press of what was coming for Sunday, March 30 was right before me. March 30 was a fifth Sunday. Normally, under the plan of the congregation I serve, that would have been a Youth Sunday. However, during my bout with cancer there were no Youth Sundays even though there were two fifth Sundays. It was time to reinstitute the Youth Sunday celebration. I had planned a program called, "Meet the Lemons", based on a series of pictures I had on file in which fruits and vegetables were portrayed with facial features. It took most of the week, but it finally came together and the kids loved it this past Sunday.

With those three things figuring prominently in my mind this past week I almost forgot that it wasn't that long ago that I had gotten out of the hospital. March 27 was my appointment with Dr. Colin, my ear-nose-throat specialist. No time for the euphoria of Easter or the sorrow of one's passing or the press of a needed program. It was reality time. Through all of the events of the week I was seeking reassurance; of Christ's resurrection, of my father's salvation, of the coming program's success. Now it was time for the reassurance that my voice would come back to fairly normal.

I have been preaching with a paralyzed vocal chord since March 2. I have been doing well but I have a breath problem talking. My good vocal chord has nothing against which to work so the air just flies past it making my speech a little fragmented. I have to talk in phrases to make up sentences instead of having the breath to speak in complete sentences. I know in my heart (and have for some time) that my voice is probably not coming back on its own. I needed reassurance that I could recover a semblence of my former voice.

Dr. Colin informed me that I could. It would be a fairly simple procedure of inserting a plug against the bad vocal chord to press it over against the good one. He said that the success rate for the procedure is almost 100 %. As I left his office that day with my wife, Becky, I remembered the words of the apostle Paul when he wrote, "I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content." Philippians 4:11 Christ is risen, my father is with Him, the children learned and as long as I have a voice to proclaim such truths that is all I need.