From Mark:

DustyMark's Journey 23 Comments

Noember 28th

A quick note from me…

Our little blood pressure cuff talks to us. At first we thought it annoying. But its nice when we can just listen and put it into the ipad. I should name her. Give me names.

Usually she says “according to the World Health Organization, your blood presssue is….” mild or high hypertension is what we usually hear but this last week she said “normal”. We both looked at each other and celebrated for a second. Now, I’m worried it will go below 90 (on top) during dialysis. That’s not good. I’m suppose to do something…but not totallly sure. Saline Bolus…. but not sure what else. I hate being in this position. But lets not worry about that until it comes.

Today we went to Karson and Abbey’s engagement party and then took Cora to meet her carpool back to college. She wasn’t excited to go. She is nervous about finals. I’m really glad Mark was able to go to the party and meet Abbys parents. After that I went to get a coat of paint on the upstairs base trim as the carpet is coming.

Mark is in so so so much back pain. It radiates down his legs. A deep ache….a writing pain. It keeps him from being able to take steps some days. I hope so desperately praying..that this procedure can relieve this.


From Mark:

Where does my personal identity and value come from…

Some of the things we obtain our self worth from are not necessarily wrong when we recognize the Giver and that it is a Gift.  

“God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure. ”

― Eric Liddell

Galations 3: 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

1 John 3:2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.

Colossians 3:1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

August 2021—I’m 45 years old, married to a beautiful wife, about to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary, 6 beautiful children, I have a great job that brings me feelings of accomplishment and satisfaction.  I fly corporate Jet aircraft around the country, it’s a fun job to talk about— I get to go to interesting places, fly with great people and enjoy adventure. I also am a Pilot Examiner, its an important job with authority that I receive a lot of respect and my opinions hold weight in the aviation community.  I am a Deacon and Sunday school teacher at my Church, its a great Church and I feel like I fit and have worthwhile, fun roles in my ministry there.  I have many great relationships and friendships and social circles that I thoroughly enjoy.  I am fit for 45, active, healthy and enjoy my life and friendships.

I Feel Like a Man

The Shake up

My world has been turned upside down the past four months.  In August I had just finished a hiking trip with the youth group and my wife.  During the trip I didn’t feel the best,  didn’t have my normal appetite, low energy—wanted to take naps daily, and I would get up 4 times per night to go to the bathroom—Dusty and Cora, my tent-mates, did not appreciate me climbing over them constantly to run to the woods every night.  I didn’t think a lot about it, just hoped that once I got back to my routine and normal sleeping schedule I would regain energy etc.  But it only got worst when we returned home. Eventually I ran to to the ER to take a look at what I thought was appendicitis.  After some tests and scans they said it wasn’t appendicitis and sent me home. However, in the next few days they called me to have an emergency consultation with a urologist to pursue a stint and review the scans—and that there was a slight possibility we were dealing with cancer.

I was working/ flying  (its hard to call flying work) on the East coast when I came back to what became an emergency operation to relieve pressure on my kidney system which were failing due to a swollen lymph node…A short time later we realized I have kidney cancer and within a few days my kidney fails..

Dialysis Begins.

It was not fun.  It made me physically sick at first, it made me exhausted afterward it took a huge chunk of HOPE from soul.  Dialysis felt so permanent, using a machine to clean my blood for me— forever.  When the Dr. left all I could do was cry.  I felt like I was losing a piece of me, a huge piece of ‘my armor’ had been chipped away.  I was less of the Man I identified as. 

Side Note

One of my core beliefs that I have faced every trial in my life with is The sovereignty of God.  I know He allowed this, however He also provided for us.

I can see how He wis taking care of me and  my family—The Church and friends from work and previous employers have reached out to us in unbelievable ways. I need you to understand that I did not get bitter toward God.   Our home church, other local churches and friends have provided meals, gas cards, money and prayer—I have never experienced so many people praying for us before.  My employer and boss have been beyond gracious and supportive during this time and remind me constantly to just worry about getting better—when its easy to begin worrying about health insurance, co-pays (on ridiculously priced drugs ) finances, and the future.  God has been Good to us despite this trial.

Crank up the Pain—No more tough guy.

During this time my lower back began to cause me greater and greater pain that meds did very little to combat.  My Dr.s were more focussed on their specialty—urology, oncology, nephrology, etc.. to be too concerned with a little back pain and it became a thorn in my side—especially after I returned home from hospital stay.

I couldn’t sleep and felt like I would go for days without real rest.  I would shuffle in circles around my kitchen island because I couldn’t lay down or sit. I would Cry and Cry —and Cry out to God and He did not answer me.  I would leave the house at 2 am and walk my gravel road.  Singing hymns, mumbling prayers over and over again, hollering as loud I could, my angry and  confused ramblings would take over, just me and the orchards—it hurt so bad I said more than once Ito myself and God that I would rather die than feel this and that I see no purpose in it—I can’t do it. (Job 38:3 Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me. 4 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand.).  My favorite song for the last few years is “Where were you” by Ghost Ship   A little more of my identity stripped away— I couldn’t brace myself like a man I could only cry by myself like a child. All these people telling me how strong I was and really I was a fraud, and it just took a little pain to reveal it—another piece of armor falls to the ground

Rejoin the Battle—Time to redouble my efforts and Fight

Let’s turn our attention to the route cause— CANCER

This is where my mind had to fully wrap itself around the fact that I have cancer and its serious.  Giant tumor, dead and dying lymph nodes etc.  But maybe we can fight this and regain kidney function for a full recovery—sliver of hope.  You see, I’m an optimist by nature, pragmatic but very positive.  If we fight this cancer the kidney can regain functionality and I can return to normal life.  That’s been my story in the past— I’ve had multiple accidents, broken ribs punctured lung, malaria, meningitis, toxoplasmosis, stitches upon stitches upon stitches…and yet God has always healed me entirely.  

We begin the cancer journey, first Spectrum, then to Mayo and finally to U of M Cancer center,  none of my Dr.’s shared my optimism.  Every time we thought we had won a battle or taken a step forward we would be slammed with news that felt like we had to take two steps back.

One day driving back from Ann Arbor from an Infusion treatment at Michigan Cancer treatment center, my nephew gave me a call.  It was a great conversation, just catching up on what his first year out of college has been like, his new job girlfriend etc.  When we started to discuss this cancer battle he said something that I had heard many times in the past few months—“Uncle Mark, you got this, you’re a fighter, you don’t ever give up, you’ve got that competitive drive you are going to beat this!”  Every time I heard this before I nodded in appreciation to the giver of kind words.  But this time choking back tears all I could say is; no I can’t fight this battle, I haven’t given up hope, however I’ve come to realize I can’t fight this, it is out of my hands, my control, my efforts, my intellect,  my health is in God’s hands and he is trying to convince me to walk with him and trust him.  Does that mean I have abandoned my efforts? Of course not! I just realize I cannot put my confidence in these systems.  I need to learn how to walk with God in peace and pain trusting His sovereign plan for my life and inevitable death. .

I love that simple song by Michael W. Smith “This is how I Fight my Battles”  in the beginning of the song MWS sates “The Word says in Spirit of heaviness put on a Garment of praise.”  (Is 61:3)

I am not the warrior people think I am. I have lost my grip and my sword falls to the ground..

My Body has Failed me

One of the things I have always had is a body that would perform for me.  I’m just a normal looking guy, not really big, not a body builder or anyone you would do a double take at their visible size or strength.  However, I have always been able to do physical things and my physical abilities did not diminish like my friends who were my age.  Dusty and I would be walking and I would ask her do you think I can jump over that chain link fence or picnic table and she learned to say “yes” so I wouldn’t prove her wrong (she is always worried that I would hurt myself).  I played in a 3 on 3 with some 20 year old kids last summer and they were jumping up and hanging on the rim and they urged me to try—I was a little nervous since its been a while since I had attempted this—but I took two steps jumped  and was hanging on the rim.  I can’t remember a time period when I couldn’t run a 5k at the drop of the hat.  I was always challenging young guys to feats of strength, climbing barn ropes with just your arms, foot races, pull up contests, etc.  I don’t really work out a lot, but I loved to play games and challenge myself.  My wife was training for a big race she was preparing for and I remember someone asking me “do you think you could run with her now that she’s in such great condition?” And I said to them “ Run with her?  I would crush her in a race…I am a Man.”  I have always been known for and taken pride in my ability to compete and accomplish physical feats despite my lack of visible athletic size or strength.  It was part of who I was, its what made me a Man.

In the past 4 months I have lost over 46 lbs of muscle and fat,  my glutes are hanging flaps of skin, my quads are smaller than my knees, my pant size has dropped to a 28 waist, my arm and hand strength are virtually gone, I wear my wedding ring on my middle finger so it doesn’t fall off,  I struggle to walk distances over 100M without out stopping to catch my breath. Steps have become a feat of strength, I walk with a cane some times, my back bones are so brittle due to cancer I need a back brace because I fractured my vertebrae by wretching during a vomiting episode!  Every night I need my wife to help my undress because I lack the flexibility to do it myself.  When I stair in the mirror I see a guy whose spandex underwear hang off him like boxers, who looks like he’s been in a POW camp the last year.  Every morning I weigh myself and we can’t believe I’ve lost more weight.  I’m wasting away due to cancer and can’t seem to slow it.  My body is failing me, it makes me feel like less of a man.  It makes me feel like less of me,  like part of who I am is gone.  All the physical things I used to do for my wife and kids because I was the only one who could do them are gone.  This physical failure has hit me like a double failure, not only have I lost my ability to do basic things, I lost a large part of my psyche, of what I thought/think defines me. 

Is He enough for me?  Is He?  Is there Meaning in this?  With my armor and sword gone there is no covering or hiding, some days I feel like a shell of who I once was or who I was meant to be.

Influence, Authority and Respect

I have taken personality tests at work during the past and often am a little ashamed of the results.  The results usually feel right on, like they have pin pointed who I am, however they never feel very Christian like or humble.  I feel like there was a large portion of my life where my feelings about my personality and my faith have been at battle and I think in the last 5-10 years I have come to balance those feelings and seen how God can use me with the gifts and abilities he has given.

Here is a taste of who I am:

Strength Finder Significance analysis “You want to be very significant in the eyes of other people. In the truest sense of the word you want to be recognized. You want to be heard. You want to stand out. You want to be known. In particular, you want to be known and appreciated for the unique strengths you bring. You feel a need to be admired as credible, professional, and successful. Likewise, you want to associate with others who are credible, professional, and successful. And if they aren’t, you will push them to achieve until they are.Or you will move on. An independent spirit, you want your work to be a way of life rather than a job, and in that work you want to be given free rein, the leeway to do things your way. Your yearnings feel intense to you, and you honor those yearnings. And so your life is filled with goals, achievements, or qualifications that you crave. Whatever your focus—and each person is distinct—your Significance theme will keep pulling you upward, away from the mediocre toward the exceptional. It is the theme that keeps you reaching.”

After rereading this, I question posting it because I feel a little embarrassed by the description—however, I just described to you what I look like in my underwear— so in the spirit of humility, this is what  I look like in my ‘mental underwear’, and whether you find it attractive or ugly, God given or Sin driven, it is who I am.

I have had the privilege of holding some pretty cool positions the past 10 years and they fit my personality and brought me a lot of enjoyment and confidence in who I was as a man. I was selected by the FAA to be a Designated Pilot Examiner.  There are only a few of us in the industry that are selected after a pretty intensive interview and training process.  The FAA then allows us to perform pilot tests for the Aviation community, that means all the flight schools need to send their students for one final practical exam before they can be issued a Pilot License.  With this authority comes a lot of influence and respect.  Flight schools are regularly calling to ask how they can improve their training curriculum etc.  Students and Flight instructors always refer to you as Mr. Linsley and Sir and I enjoyed the position and did not shy away from having to make difficult decisions and communicate them.  I was blessed with ability to build a nice little business, Arise Aviation 

Along with the pilot testing I was able to move from a corporate sales position to a Corporate Pilot position 4 years ago—which is a blast and flying a business jet around the country is always a fun conversation and has been a great part of my job the last few years.

I was elected a deacon and selected as Chair of the Board this last year at Kent City Baptist church, and enjoyed the board members, the work and team work, and my position thoroughly.  It felt comfortable, it felt like it fit.  I teach a Senior High Sunday school class, and it was one of my weekly joys—High School kids who have questions and are hungry to learn how the Bible fits together and what is God’s story and plan for this world was fun, fulfilling and energized me.  These things may seem trivial, but they are part of the pie that made me feel like a man.

Slowly, the phone stops ringing.  The FAA although totally supportive is required to put my DPE Authority on hold, The Company is required to hire a contract pilot to airline to Michigan to take my flying responsibilities.  I am not capable of making deacon board meetings, teaching Sunday school, or even keeping up with house remodel project so we can move in.

Flight schools no longer call with questions,  flight students no longer contact me looking for Checkride advice.  People would want to visit me but talk about my health—or not bother me with a questions etc.  It’s at the point where my kids would call Dusty to ask for something basic while I sit in my chair in the other room! I’ve always known that people are much more replaceable than we tend to believe, life goes on, the work is picked up by others and so on.  However, its strange when your not gone, just incapacitated.  After recently reading the book of Job I recognized that even he felt the pain of no longer being an influencer! Job 29:7 “Those were the days when I went to the city gate and took my place among the honored leaders. 8 The young stepped aside when they saw me..” 

This one is a must listen to.  Is He enough for me?  Is He?  Is there Meaning in this?  Am I letting this build an Eternal weight of Glory in me?  Romans 8:18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

“Though you Slay Me” by Shane and Shane   I still can’t listen to it without tears.  

Now you see me, no armor, no weapon, naked, weak, and wasting.  This is who I am in my fragile human form.  However, I am learning..deep down where no one can see—I am not defined by being a Man!  And thus the characteristics that make me feel like a man are meaningless!  I am crucified with Christ!  It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around and I am constantly revisiting it.  If I were to die in the next year and face my Creator what would any of this mean to Him anyway?  I trust in His payment, His plan, and that He has a purpose that is beyond me!  

My wife and I have been reading through Acts and now the Apostle Pauls letters to the Churches.  In Philippians Chapter 3 he writes some powerful words describing his faith.  Pastor Ken and Pastor Chris taught on the subject at Stayko this year and I went back and listened to the messages again:

Phil 3:7 I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. 8 Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ

And Probably the most powerful section to me:

Phil 3:10 I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, 11 so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead! 

And finally

Rom 8:18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

I know some of you will think this is pretty ‘religiousy’—but its who I am, these are the thoughts I wrestle with, it’s more than a coping mechanism—it is my World View.  It is how I plan to face my creator—Jesus. 

Comments 23

  1. I’ve been struggling the last 5 years with my diabetes I often wondered why hasn’t God healed me it’s been 46 years t keep going back to Paul’s thorn which never was removed then I hear kutless sing about even if the healing doesn’t come and I now realize that healing or no healing when we know God we know we have a house with many rooms prepared for me I can’t hardly fathom it. My brother died at 36 he went to a church where they all laid hands on him prayed over him on the way home he told me he felt God’s calling him home and who would say no to God? I love you mark healthy or not your still a great man father husband and friend when you should have told me to just come watch the guys play ball instead you said come play you let the old guy play other people have not been that kind your one of a kind and proud to call you my friend

  2. I don’t know you or Dusty very well, as we’ve really only ever had casual conversations in the church lobby.
    But I’ve always admired the things about you that you now say are “who you thought you were- what made you a man.” I mean, who wouldn’t admire a guy who flies important people around the country, and teaches new pilots and is responsible for accreditation of new pilots? But really, what I’ve admired is the way you balance family and work, and most importantly, that your faith is always evident. People look to you for spiritual guidance and wisdom. That says more about you than any pilot’s license.
    We don’t know, and certainly can never humanly understand why God allows these horrific things to happen. How could we? We don’t know the mind of God.
    What I do know, is that He is being reflected over and over again by the many who are sharing in your journey, bringing meals, shopping for groceries, finishing your house, PRAYING for you and your whole family. He is being glorified by your hearts of thankfulness, and by your talking/blogging about His faithfulness through all of this. That you are trusting Him, no matter how hard it gets. THAT, my friend, is who you are. He is where your identity is, and it takes a real man (or woman, Dusty!) to not only accept that, but to claim it and proclaim it. That is who I see.
    My prayers join so many others out there that are praying for the miracle you seek.

  3. O my goodness. Reading this story made me cry. I had a hard time getting through this without tears for you and your family. God is diffently using you to encourage others . God has made you a very made you a very strong man. Spiritually you are truly a blessing to all who know you. Thank you so much for sharing🥰🥰love you guys and continuing to keep you all in my prayers🙏🏻🙏🏻✝️✝️🥰🥰🤗🤗

  4. WOW is the only thing that comes to my mind. How to go from strong on the outside to strong on the inside. Truly inspirational!!

  5. Oh Mark, Thank you for sharing your journey and your heart. I didn’t know much of that. I pray for you and Linsley everyday. After hearing your words,, I will pray more. You are going through a tough situation. I am thankful you and your family have God and Jesus as your personal and intimate Savior.

  6. Mark, The surrendering that you have gone through is incredible. What a gift that others can read what this has been like for you to help others in their process. Praying for you, your family and your health care team.

  7. Dear Mark,
    I can’t help but look at you through the eyes of your grandma Joan. A very capable, and oh, so humble woman. And she liked! me? Remember when she and her sister danced at their birthday party? I wasn’t there but it’s seared on my mind. A beautiful picture of joy. As my prayer life has evolved in my walk with Christ a main staple sentence is:”Dear Lord, help us to the day when we barely remember this request.” It is a hard time. Job, Joshua, Caleb….good guys to study.

  8. Mark, thanks so much for sharing your heart and struggle. I too am struggling with health issues; not as serious as yours are yet. But I’ve lost my strength and the person I used to be. Just as you described. Your words encouraged me greatly for there are many of us who go through these battles. Praise God that we don’t go through them alone.

  9. Mark. You are incredible. Even in your mental, flapping undies you continue to lead. Thank you for sharing, friend. We are thinking of you and your family, holding you close in our hearts always. (dana and josh)

  10. Mark, I heard about your situation from my dad, and it just made me realize how human we really all are. Reading this, I thought that way again, that we are very mortal. I also try to keep my armor on and my sword sharp and live by titles, goals, ambitions, success etc. and with that I can only imagine how I’d feel being incapacitated. I will say this, when I went through my divorce in 2018 I also thought those same thoughts, “is there a point to this? Is He doing anything about this?!” I remember those cries. I lost 41 pounds, became anorexic, developed chronic migraines, went through depression, anxiety, panic attacks (for the first time ever I couldn’t control my own body!?), and I felt like giving up myself. I couldn’t find comfort or peace from the support and kind words of others alone, I needed God. I needed to be humbled. A verse I read during my broken heart was Psalm 34:18, as well as Philippians 3 that you wrote about. Psalm 34:18 says, “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and He Restores the crushed in spirit”. While my body was failing, my spirit was down, my heart was broken, I fell to my knees every night seeking answers as well Mark, and I found peace from this verse. The Lord is Near, even while we don’t understand the trial we are going through, the Lord Restores us. Not by anything we ourselves or a doctor can do, but by His Own Doing, God Restores us and our broken spirit. I share in your optimism, knowing that we are mortal men of Christ, children of God, that by surrendering to His just plan, that God will restore you, in whatever that might look like. God bless you and the whole family, I will add you to my prayers! Much love.

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      Jeremy. This is Dusty…I did not know all of that. I’m so sorry you went through all of that. This situation has made both of us much more aware of the hurt around us. I read this aloud to Mark. He is so glad you were able to read it and to respond in this way. Others will be encouraged by your own story so keep telling it! Thank you for posting.

  11. Mark, Mark, Mark,
    What could I ever say that would penetrate the words of someone’s heart and soul like you just wrote. I know I have told you for years that you were and are my hero. Sure we have laughed about it and you would just shrug me off, the truth is you have been a good friend, a good brother in Christ and a person that I respected more than you will ever know. We choose people and put them in hero status for meaningless reasons, but I select mine in a different way. My dad is my biggest hero and you my friend are in the small group of what I call heroes. I will never forget the father/son campouts where really got to know you and over the years my respect for you has grown more and more. The only flaw I saw in you was your free throw shooting (lol) and the fact that I beat you at golf. Keep up the strong fight Mark and keep charging on in your spiritual fight. Sammy Hagar had a song “Remember the Heros” thanks for sharing brother.

  12. So good and profound, because you are who you are. And who you are — why you are loved and respected— has little to do with the parts that aren’t working right now. Replaceable is just not a word that anyone I know would apply to you — now or ever.

    Praying for your restoration, and ours.

  13. It is heartwarming to hear your soul and heart of God. His ways are higher than our ways and His plan for us is wonderful beyond thought. We are praying for you and your family know God does not disappoint. Romans 5:3-5

  14. Mark!
    Remember when you were in High School and I was working at the Newago airport? Your class came through for a tour of the hangar and I remember one of the girls pointing at the wheel pants on a Cessna 172, said, “I can’t believe the plane can land on water and float on those little things!” Oh, you have shared many good times and made great memories with countless people. Mark, you leave a wake of friends wherever you go and shine the love of Christ to all around you.
    Thanks for your honest and vulnerable sharing. Having just read through the book of Job two weeks ago, I thought of the parallels of Job’s life to yours. You ARE a respected leader in the aviation industry, church, and community. Yet sovereign God allows you to be tested like Job and you pass the test. Your words above are your version of Job 30, especially vs 16 – 17. I can only hope you have better friends than Job’s friends!
    Please know – we are praying for you and your family.

  15. Mark I love you.
    Thank you for your honesty. Reading this makes me think even more of you than I have in the past.
    Aunt Karen

  16. Mark,

    Your life is an amazing testimony to us. We are praying for you and your family. Thank you for sharing.

    Your cousins Kim & David

  17. Hi Mark and Dusty!
    We have been sending prayer intentions for you and quietly following along. ❤️

    Name suggestions for the BP…since she references the WHO what about Cindy Lou? (Or another character from Whoville. Perhaps the Grinch when feeling angered by it 😉)

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  18. Mark,
    Thank you for sharing your deepest thoughts on your struggle and God’s sovereignty. Your story radiates God’s glory, because at your barest, with everything stripped away that you valued, you are still filled up to all the fullness of God, to the praise of His glory.

    Praying with you for a physical miracle in your body.
    And also Praying for a continued spiritual awakening in you that will leave you forever changed.

    In Christ,
    Amy Maciel

    I am sending a quote from a book that I recently started reading.

    “Our battles in the visible realm force us to finally ask the right question. Until we recognize that the right question doesn’t focus on the externals of life, we’re never going to experience the unseen and eternal. When we finally realize that the right question has to do with the life within us, then the Holy Spirit will come along with an answer.

    The only answers we get to flesh questions-those that focus on externals-are flesh answers. Those answers all have to do with more activity, more dedication, and more commitment. That’s a flesh answer to a flesh question. It may even work for a little while. But it doesn’t bring life.

    The Spirit teaches us by bringing us to the place where we begin asking spirit questions instead of flesh questions. Spirit questions are questions from desperation. They arise when you reach the end of all your flesh questions. When we finally ask a spirit question, the Holy Spirit will give us an answer. It’s interesting how quickly the answer comes once you ask the right question. Because the answer always is (present tense). All we have to do is catch up with the answer. The answer is a Person who lives in us.

    This is why we have to fail. God couldn’t be God and let us succeed in the flesh or we would never know Spirit life.” – “The Rest of the Gospel”. Dan Stone

  19. Hey Brother! I miss having you in the cockpit. You have a gift in being able to put your thoughts on paper. (I must be an old guy. I mean putting your thoughts on a screen 😊). Thank you for sharing from your soul. When the Bible says to pray without ceasing, I am motivated to do that for you and Dusty. Kind of like in the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” when everyone is praying for George Bailey. (Again showing my age 😐). I have never met Dusty but after being “forced” to hear you talk about her for the last four years in the cockpit I pictured her as being Mrs. America. After reading her posts I now know why you talk about her so much and have come to believe she is Mrs. America with grit and gumption! I now know why you love her so.
    II Tim. 1:3-5 “I thank God… without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, when I recall the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother “Joan” and your mother Dianne, and I am persuaded is in you also”. Also 2:1 “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. “
    Love you Brother.
    Hope to see you soon.

  20. Mark,
    Thank you for letting us catch a glimpse of your bare soul. I am captivated by the story God is writing in your life. I grieve with you the wasting away of your physical body at the same time celebrating with you the strengthening of your spirit by the power of His Spirit. You are always in my prayers, and you will always be a man . . . a true man of God . . . in my eyes.

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