Walk In Your Miracle

Today’s a new day! On my Facebook memory today, it shared my bride and I were in Seattle on June 14,2019. We were going on a cruise to Alaska in celebration of our 20th Anniversary. What my medical team shared would be our last anniversary (our anniversary is actually in September) and probably my last trip ever. I was dying.

After almost 18 years of battling multiple life threatening health issues, my body was shutting down. I weighed 112 pounds, could not eat and could barely speak. I was living off a feeding tube. I was a dead man walking. But Laura and I were not thinking about death. We were too busy living life and making memories. We were living with Hope. Still believing in a Crazy Beautiful Miracle. Several months later, I would experience that crazy beautiful miracle under a tent. I would not experience death as most of my medical team predicted. No, Jesus had other plans. Plans for me to live and share the story he gave me. To Thrive.

Today you might be facing a storm. Maybe even death. But I want to encourage you to live with Hope and Believe our wonderful Savior might just have a crazy beautiful miracle for you. So walk in your Miracle today. ~OC

This picture was taken in June 2019 on our trip to Alaska.

The Storm

Today’s a new day! It doesn’t matter if the storm you are facing was started by the hand of the enemy, it still has to pass through the hand of Jesus. ~OC

My Covid Journey

For most 2020 was a year to forget. The Covid Pandemic turned most of the world upside down. We watched in horror as we watched so many people and families suffer tremendous suffering and lose. As my wife and I watched all this unfold, we were thankful that Covid19 had not touched us. Until it did.

On Super Bowl Sunday 2021, I woke up a little tired. It had been a long week so I did not think much of it. I took my temperature, but thankfully it was normal. I headed off to church excited for the day. You see, I am a life long Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan and they were playing in the Super Bowl. After church, I headed home and had a little pregame nap. When I woke up everything changed. I woke up with my shirt being soaked in sweat. I took my temperature and it was at 103,6. It would later jump to 104.2 and stay there for several days. I immediately went and had a Covid test. Of course this was on a Sunday, so my results would take a few days. I went home and basically slept through the Bucs winning the Super Bowl. Go Bucs!

On Monday morning I woke up feeling much worse. My temperature was now at 104.2. I also had a terrible headache, body aches, terrible cough and did not want to move. Later in the day, it was determined I needed to make my way to the ER. Once inside the ER, test revealed I had Covid and double pneumonia. I was headed to the Covid floor.

During my stay at the hospital I received Blood Plasma, Steroids and Remdesivir. Being isolated on the Covid floor was tough. When I have been hospitalized in the past, I was used to having visitors and walking the halls. This hospital stay was filled with staff in protective covering and closed doors. Complete Isolation. After more than a week on the Covid floor, I was released. Time to recover from Covid and double pneumonia.

After arriving home, I waited to get better. Surely I would feel better in a few days. But that has not been the case. Today is just under two months since my diagnosis. Unfortunately my symptoms have not gotten much better. My CT Scan shows my lungs are still filled with Covid. I am still dealing with headaches, breathing issues, cough, no appetite, hoarse voice, fatigue and brain fog. Most of my days fill like the movie Groundhogs Day.

My medical team has classified me as a Covid Long Hauler. Not a club anyone wants to be part of. Everything is wait and see at this point. So, what do you do with that news? When you cannot rely on anything that was once reliable. When you have taken every step you know how to take-what then?

You Hope. You Never Give Up.

My life is totally different than it was a few months ago. At times I stand up having no idea where I am going. Trying to process new information has become a challenge. But here’s some good news. God is still in control. His promises never change.

So, I will focus on the unseen. I will continue to pray with great expectancy to wake up one morning with no Covid symptoms. That day when I am renewed physically. But until that day, I will live in Hope. ~OC

“So no wonder we don’t give up. For even though our outer person gradually wears out, our inner being is renewed every single day. We view our slight, short-lived troubles in the light of eternity. We see our difficulties as the substance that produces for us an eternal, weighty glory far beyond all comparison, because we don’t focus our attention on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but the unseen realm is eternal. ~2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Keep Overcoming

The enemy will try to knock you down. Keep Overcoming. The enemy will tell you your not good enough. Keep Overcoming. The enemy will try to put fear & doubt in your mind. Keep Overcoming. Whatever the enemy throws at you today, Keep Overcoming. ~OC

GPS

Today’s a new day! No GPS will take us where Jesus wants to take us. Keep pressing forward. ~OC

Where Are You Running?

At some point in this journey called life, we will face a giant. That giant could be a health issue, a financial need, a career decision or a relationship struggle. These giants can hit us out of nowhere. Sometimes we want to wish our giants away. But we know we cannot just wish these giants away.

Each day these giants are staring you in the face. These giants just will not go away. Sometimes these giants can define us. These giants can overshadow all the great things going on in our lives.

The giants can turn a beautiful life into a hopeless and joyless existence. So what do most people do when facing giants? We usually run away from the giants in our lives.

Where are you running to? When Goliath was raising havoc over Israel, the people were running away from this giant. Except for one boy. When David showed up he had a different plan. He decided to face Goliath head on. No running away for David. No, David had a plan. He had a sling shot and five smooth stone. He only needed one. Most importantly, God was standing with David. God had prepared David to take Goliath down. David decided to run towards what everyone else was running from.

Are you running towards your giant or away from the giant in your life? Our journey is not about running away from our giants, but facing them head on. Maybe we do not have a sling shot and stone, but we have to have a plan. When we decide to run towards our giants, we must run with purpose.

After you decide to face your giants, make sure your running towards God. Only through him can we face and defeat our giants. Trust God with the giants in your life. He will give us the tools to defeat every giant that comes our way. God is our safe place. When we are facing our giants, putting our hope and trust in God is the only way. God will give us victory over every giant we face in life. Run towards that victory. ~OC

My Weakness

Today’s a new day! My weakness makes room for God’s strength. In times that are tiring and uncertain, when I feel I have nothing left in the tank, He shows up and reminds me that there is indeed nothing I can do… and He offers me His strength… because it is more than enough to carry this weight. ~OC

My Journey As A Bucs Fan

Well my Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to the Super Bowl in Tampa. That’s right. The Bucs are the first team to ever play in a Super Bowl in their own stadium. A lot of folks are jumping on the bandwagon and I am okay with that. Me, I have been rooting for the Bucs since the very beginning in 1974.

That’s right, I started following the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on April 24, 1974. That is the day the NFL awarded Tampa with a team. Wow, that was 46 years ago. I was born and raised in South Florida, but just never became a fan of the Miami Dolphins. No disrespect to the Dolphins or their fans. My grandfather was a huge fan and tried his best to make me a Dolphin fan. Heck, I even wore a Dolphins shirt for school pictures one time. But I could never get behind the team from Miami. Then that day in 1974 happened.

Once the NFL awarded the city of Tampa with a team, I was immediately onboard. Even though the Bucs did not start playing until the 1976 season, I was a fan. My parents even bought me a Tampa Bay Buccaneers shirt. Yes, I walked around proudly in my “Creamsicle” Bucs shirt.

After two long years, the 1976 NFL season finally started. Most people don’t remember that the Bucs were originally in the AFC West. I was so excited to see my Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally start playing. The Bucs were playing, but not winning. Tampa ended that first season 0-14. That’s right. A winless season. But I was not deterred. I still proudly wore my Bucs shirt, even though I was heckled by family and friends. I would not give up on my favorite NFL team. I was all in.

My journey as Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan has been a roller coaster. I remember fondly my Bucs winning their first regular season game against the New Orleans Saints in 1977. Oh what a day! Finally able to celebrate a win. Then celebrating a playoff berth in 1979. Then celebrating a Super Bowl victory in 2002. So many great memories.

In 2021, my Bucs are back in the Super Bowl. A lot of people are jumping on the bandwagon. But I have no hate for those bandwagon fans. Welcome aboard! I hope you will truly fall in love with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers like I did, as a child back in 1974. Go Bucs! ~OC

I Am

As I was on my morning walk, these words came to me:

I am a white man. I bleed red.

My brothers and sisters of color bleed red.

I am a white man. I love to pray.

My brothers and sisters of color love to pray.

I am a white man. I love my family and friends

My brothers and sisters of color love their family and friends.

I am a white man. I love to laugh and cry.

My brothers and sisters of color love to laugh and cry.

I am a white man. I love to praise God.

My brothers and sisters of color love to praise God.

I am a white man. I want the best for my family and friends.

My bothers and sisters of color want the best for their family and friends.

I am a white man. I love to read and listen to music.

My brothers and sisters of color love to read and listen to music.

I am a white man. I love great conversation.

My brothers and sisters of color love great conversation.

I am a white man. I have the right to share my opinions.

My brothers and sisters of color have the right to share their opinions.

I am a white man. I love diversity.

My brothers and sisters of color love diversity.

I am a white man. I reach out with love to my brothers and sisters of color. I am blessed that my brothers and sisters of color have always reached back with open arms and love.

Why did I share this blogpost? Because We have more in common than we have differences. There is no Them. There is only Us. As a world we are better Together. Celebrate Diversity. ~OC

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