Courtney Brannen

First post: May 3, 2021 Latest post: Aug 6, 2021
Please join us in praying for and supporting Courtney and her family.  Her faith and hope are incredible.  Please see her message below explaining her diagnosis and upcoming surgery.

Courtney's words:

"6 years ago I was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue (tongue cancer). The working theory is that, for whatever reason, the skin on my tongue just doesn’t heal well.  When a tongue ulcer doesn’t heal properly - a very small percentage can turn into a malignant tumor - and that’s what happened.  At that time, the tumor was removed and it was considered a surgical cure.  Unfortunately, I have had a recurrence.  Thankfully - just like before it was caught early—my scans show no signs of metastasis - but the location makes the surgery a little more complicated if I want to retain the ability to speak and eat.  So - On May 5th I will head into the operating room for removal of the tumor followed by reconstruction of my tongue using a muscle from my arm.  I’ll be in the hospital for 5-7 days so my team can keep a close eye on my new arm/tongue. Thankfully, Jason will be able to be with me in the hospital.  COVID restrictions don’t allow for inpatient visitors - unless, you loose the ability to communicate - so - I guess that makes me thankful for the necessity of the temporary tracheostomy (surgical airway through the neck)?  It definitely makes me thankful for a husband who never once questioned canceling a week of work to move into MDAnderson with me - that’s right - move in. . . COVID restrictions don’t allow him to come and go!  Thank you for jumping onto this site to check up on me.  

Please pray for my girls, Griffin (14) and Gavin (11).  It’s going to be a long time of separation - for the first time since March of 2020.  Please pray that throughout all of this - they never doubt the goodness of God." 

Courtney also asked me to share Psalm 139.  Rest in it.

Search Me, O God, and Know My Heart

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

Psalm 139

O Lord, you have searched me and known me!

You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.

You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways.

Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.

You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. 

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, you are there!

If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!

If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.

If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb.

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. 

Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them,

the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!

How vast is the sum of them!

If I would count them, they are more than the sand.

I awake, and I am still with you.

Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God!

O men of blood, depart from me!

They speak against you with malicious intent;

your enemies take your name in vain.

Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord?

And do I not loathe those who rise up against you?

I hate them with complete hatred; I count them my enemies.

Search me, O God, and know my heart!

Try me and know my thoughts!

And see if there be any grievous way in me,

and lead me in the way everlasting!

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