On Tuesday, my pastor, Austin Gardner, was hospitalized. After a few tests, the news was not good. Most likely early next week he will undergo surgery to remove a kidney and a 10 cm cancerous growth. Here is an update Pastor Gardner sent out on Wednesday:
I want to thank each of you for praying for me. I am totally unworthy of all of your kind words, thoughts and prayers. God has been super good to me. I have lived nearly 58 years without ever having a health problem. We will not let this get in the way of our thanking and praising God. If He decided to take me soon that would be best for me and for His work because He is the One that knows.
I think from what the doctor says that this will be handled fairly easily. It seems that I do have some form of cancer. I have a 10 cm growth on my kidney. I woke up yesterday and when I urinated I saw a ton of blood in my urine. I went to the emergency room at Parkwest Hospital in Knoxville. They ran blood work, two different CT scans, the last with dye or something, the urine was too full of blood to be really tested.
I have an appointment with a urologist here in Knoxville on Friday at 4 pm who will do the surgery. I simply do not know when until I talk to him. I really would like to find a doctor in Atlanta but the closest first appointment that I can find so far is two weeks from today and I prefer not to wait that long to find out what is going to happen.
I appreciate your prayers and also your understanding in my not being able to do some things in the ministry until I get this taken care of. The pastoral team at Vision will help you and do anything and everything for you.
I thank God for having the greatest and most wonderful family in the world and the greatest church family! God has given us friends all over the world and I am grateful.
I hope to have more news soon and will keep you posted as I learn things. Right now it is wait until Friday at 4 pm to find out anything.
Pray for Betty. Pray that God will give me grace to glorify Him in this no matter what He wishes to do with me. Pray that I will give a good testimony to Him, His grace, and His glory.
Thank you all for every thing.
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