Tuesday, October 5, 2010

An Update on Pastor Andy McQuitty

I meant to post this over the weekend but I was too busy enjoying the beautiful weather here in Texas. Trey, Sophia, Tallen and I have been spending all of our time outside playing and visiting with our neighbors. This if my favorite time of year and I am trying to enjoy it while I can (and before it turns too cold).

Many of you have asked about our pastor, Andy McQuitty, who was diagnosed with Stage four colon cancer a little over a year ago. He has been in remission for over six months and is still in chemo. I think I will just let him fill you in on the details...

October 1, 2010
My Dear Friends,I know it’s a bit of a shock to receive this note from me. It’s been a long time since I’ve written. You’re probably thinking that’s because I’ve been distracted with an annoying brush with cancer, and perhaps concluded that the cessation of these notes must be due to Pastor Andy’s becoming debilitated, deranged, or even deceased.
Just to let you know, I’m rehabilitated and definitely respirating (notice I said nothing about derangement, that will have to be your call). And I’m back. Hope that’s good news for you. I know it is for me! Now I’m not quite all the way back, but I am getting there. Which leads me to realize it’s high time I gave you an update on where I am in my little grudge match with this stupid disease!
As you may know, I got a second clear PET/CT scan on August 11 which means that for six months, stage four cancer has gone into complete remission in my body. As a result, doc has dialed back the chemotherapy both in frequency and toxicity. I’ll have another scan in December, and if it’s still clear, chemo will end and I’ll receive my official “get out of jail free” card. Prospects are this will be the best Christmas gift I’ve ever received. All I can say is, O come, o come Emmanuel!
Even as I navigate these last months of chemo, I’m feeling stronger. Yes, chemo is still chemo, and my family and IBC staff still have to deal regularly with my “chemo brain” forgetfulness. But I’m feeling better, doing more (preaching and leading and dreaming and working and writing and loving life), and getting increasingly pumped for that day sometime after Christmas when, Lord willing, I can be 110% back in the saddle here at IBC.
From my heart I thank you all for your prayers and love and, yes, patience, through this last long 14 months. For you, and to God, I am eternally grateful!
I’m also deeply accountable. It’s no secret that statistically I should be making birdies on golf courses in Heaven right now instead of continuing to make double bogeys here on earth. I believe my life and increasing health and strength is nothing less than God’s miraculous response to the sustained and faithful prayers of His people. In other words, like Hezekiah in the Old Testament (2Kings 20), He’s chosen to extend my life—for a reason. Unlike Hezekiah in the Old Testament, I steadfastly do not want to blow my second chance and botch up the work God wants to get done! Therein lies the sense of accountability.
That’s a rather negative formulation of what I’m feeling, so let me rephrase a bit more hopefully. I’m excited to be here and convinced that God has some big plans in store for us all at IBC as we follow Him in days to come. I’ll keep you posted about that through these little notes if you like.
Bye for now, and 10,000 Blessings,
Pastor Andy

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