A failure in 1957 led to a present-day miracle.
The failure was the death of a little girl “gravely ill from congenital heart disease.” The miracle was the healing of my heart.
The world of health care was much different 65 years ago when President Russell M. Nelson was pioneering efforts in open-heart surgery.
Pioneering efforts are fraught with trial and error, mistakes and failure. Yet, few have more dire consequences than the pioneer efforts in medical care. But without the failures, and the consistent pioneering efforts to work through the failures, the successes rarely show up.
Dr. Nelson continued through his struggles, even when he was ready to quit. That moment came after the sister of that first little girl also died because he was once again unable to use his skills to save her.
Listen to his gutwrenching words shared in 2015.
“I was not optimistic about the outcome but vowed to do all in my power to save her life. Despite my best efforts, the child died. Later, the same parents brought another daughter to me, then just 16 months old, also born with a malformed heart. Again, at their request, I performed an operation. This child also died. This third heartbreaking loss in one family literally undid me.”
Can you imagine how he must have felt?
“I went home grief stricken,” he continues. “I threw myself upon our living room floor and cried all night long. [My wife] Dantzel stayed by my side, listening as I repeatedly declared that I would never perform another heart operation. Then, around 5:00 in the morning, Dantzel looked at me and lovingly asked, ‘Are you finished crying? Then get dressed. Go back to the lab. Go to work! You need to learn more. If you quit now, others will have to painfully learn what you already know.'”
When struggling in our pioneering efforts, the voice of one who loves us may be the gift we need to keep going. Elisa and our children have been such a voice for me. So have many of you.
We have been blessed this weekend to be counseled by President Nelson. His words of love and encouragement to have forward momentum have nourished us as we have drunk deeply from the “Fount of Every Blessing.”
We hope you enjoy this beautiful arrangement of “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” by our friend Jason Tonioli.
Have A Beautiful Sunday!
We Love You!
Les & Elisa