It has been a long time since I have blogged and I decided today is the day! This past year has been wild for the whole world and I wanted to update you on how things have gone for the Gibbs since we were last in Gembu. When we left we had tickets to go back to Nigeria October 6. THAT WAS OUR PLAN.
Here’s what we have been up to. We left Gembu the end of June, 2019, and traveled to Germany for meetings with the Europe and Africa fields of Converge. It was a wonderful time of learning and being encouraged and inspired by the vision cast by our Converge Worldwide Leaders and to think and pray over where God was leading us as a ministry and what He wanted to accomplish in us and through us possibly in this next phase of ministry.
We got to Minneapolis July 6 and visited all of our Minnesota churches, in July, August, and our last MN church was scheduled for September 24. When we visit our Minneapolis area churches we stay with our friends, Mark and Jane. We were visiting with Mark and Jane, eating ice cream and drinking coffee after supper on September 23 and Dan flopped his arm toward me and said something incoherent. I looked at him, laughed (he is always doing weird stuff), and continued finishing the email I was writing on my phone. He did it again so I looked up and said, “Are you ok?” He was able to say, “No!” With Mark’s emergency training he knew just what to do. We all piled into the vehicle and Mark drove us to Mercy Hospital. They took Dan in right from the parking lot and he received the clot buster medication approximately an hour after having the first signs of stroke. It is really amazing how the brain works! Dan’s right side had movement issues, his fine motor skills were limited, his speech was slurred, however his quirky sense of humor was still there. We went home two days later with appointments for speech therapy in a nearby town and a check- up with our regular Doctor. We cancelled our October 6 tickets and made reservations for November 15. At the end of October, Dan’s mom decided that she was not going to go back to Texas for the winter. She is 93 and just felt like it was too much for her. Dan decided that since we had a couple of weeks we would drive to Texas, clean up and clean out her trailer and get it ready to sell as well as taking care of any other items that needed taken care of. We left October 29 and stopped in Lincoln, Nebraska at a hotel for the evening. Dan brushed his teeth, and got really dizzy. I helped him to bed and he spent the whole night so dizzy he couldn’t move or he would throw up. I talked with our doctor and she said with his past record I should take him to the Emergency Room. I drove to the closest hospital (which happened to be the stroke center for that area) and they diagnosed Dan right away with a stroke to the base of his brain affecting his balance and causing extreme vertigo. We were at the hospital for two days and left to continue on to Texas. Dan was a little shaky and dizzy but we continued on. We got to Bibleville in Texas (the Park Dan’s mom’s trailer was in) and started cleaning out, sorting, selling, packing items and making the arrangements that needed to be made. We took it kind of slow the first few days because Dan was understandably wiped. We cancelled our plane tickets as the neurologist said Dan would have to have quite a bit of testing and we should determine why he had this second stroke after having been on the blood thinners for about 3 weeks or so. We said our goodbyes in Texas to dear friends that have prayed for us, supported us, and loved us over the years and headed to Branson for a week of vacation to just be together and chill.
The thing I would like you to remember from these events is this: During this period of time we knew God still has plans for us and felt complete peace that God knew what He was doing and He was in control so we rested in this knowledge and understanding. I kind of think this can only happen when we put ourselves totally in His hands. Dan and I did that when we started this journey. It is a peaceful place to be.