Kelly Stafford, the wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, announced Wednesday on Instagram that she has a brain tumor. She will undergo surgery later this month.
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This is a picture of Matthew & I the day we found out. I said I wanted this picture of us, so that the day this was all over, we could look back at this photo & remember. Within the last year, I began to notice things that I thought was just me getting older.. I would show my girls how to do a front roll or twirl in ballet class and immediately feel dizzy & off balance… Things that I had been doing my entire life were now, all of a sudden, difficult. The beginning of Jan was when I experienced my first spell of vertigo..It kept happening & then it happened while I was holding Hunter. Matthew took me straight to the ER. They checked vitals & bloodwork, all were fine.. Several vertigo spells later, Matthew’s team doctor recommended we go get an MRI of my brain to rule everything major out. A few days later we were hit with the results. I had a tumor sitting on some of my cranial nerves. The medical term they used was an acoustic neuroma or vestibular schwannoma.. All I heard was brain tumor & that they had to do surgery to take it out.. so that is what we are going to do & we believe we found the best doctor to do it. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t completely terrified of brain surgery. I am. I am terrified of them opening my head, I’m terrified of losing my hearing, I’m terrified of losing facial function, I’m terrified of far worse things that could happen and I’m terrified that I won’t take the time I need to recover because the guilt I might feel of being absent from my kids for too long.. I am telling y’all this to ask for prayers and support. Things to pray for: -calmness in these next 2 weeks as I know anxiety will run high in myself & my whole family leading up to the day of surgery. -that God be in the room with the surgeons & give them all the guidance, steadiness, & confidence they need. -my safety during and after surgery. -please pray for matthew as I know his nerves will be high during this surgery. I couldn’t imagine being out in that waiting room. Thank u. Thank u for reading this novel. thank u for all your support and most importantly, thank u for your prayers.
There is a lot we can do for people we have a relationship with and live in close proximity to. We can help with practical needs like transportation, food, and community. But they also need our prayers. In fact, for people we do not know, prayer becomes one of the only ways we can help.
Prayer is powerful because it works. God has given us an open line of communication where we can come to him and make requests on behalf of ourselves and others. What can we, as a community of believers, be praying for on behalf of Kelly and Matthew—even if we do not know them personally? What is Kelly asking for:
“Calmness in these next 2 weeks as I know anxiety will run high in myself & my whole family leading up to the day of surgery. That God be in the room with the surgeons & give them all the guidance, steadiness, & confidence they need. My safety during and after surgery. Please pray for Matthew as I know his nerves will be high during this surgery. I couldn’t imagine being out in that waiting room.”
I took the liberty of breaking down Kelly’s requests and gave scripture references to each category for the rest of us to pray through. There is power in praying the very words of God back to Him!
“but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
“So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7
“When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought me joy.” – Psalm 94:19
Guidance, steadiness, and confidence for the surgeons
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” – Colossians 3:23,24
“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31
Safety during and after surgery
“But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name may rejoice in you.” – Psalm 5:11
“God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.” – Psalm 46:1
Matthew in the waiting room
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.” – Romans 8:26,17
“May the Lord answer you when you are in distress;
may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.” – Psalm 20:1