James you've always had a special place in our hearts since we met you in Dillon and you and Dustin played that fun tune together on one fiddle. It's such privilege to be able to make good friends in music! Keep trusting your heavenly Father for He cares for you and "has plans for you" . We are sending up petitions for only the best for you. It will be exciting to watch your miracle unfold! Chris and Jack Horn
James, I started reading your journal-Just wanted to say keep hanging in there. I am 56 and had an aortic valve replacement a year and a half ago. Also had open heart surgery when I was 2 years old. I feel blessed to be doing ok now. It does get better. God Bless, Candy C.
Dear James, I hear you've been moved out of the ICU! Parker and I did a little dance around the living room to celebrate! I also heard you have been playing fiddle! So cheered by all that good news! We can't wait to have you back home again, Don't try to rush your recovery--healing takes time! And make sure you send your Mom out for a walk in the fresh air once in while! Hoping to see you very soon, Anna & Parker
Hey James:) I just thought this was a nice prayer.....madi
Lord God, in my affliction,
I come to thee in prayer,
unshaken in conviction,
my life is in thee care.
Dear Lord, give me endurance,
in trouble and in pain,
and grant me sweet assurance,
thy cross is my great gain.
I know that every sorrow,
sent by thy loving hand,
points to a brighter morrow,
in heaven's Holy Land.
Lord keep my faith unswerving,
and let thy will be done,
until all undeserving,
my rest in heaven be won.
I am wishing you a speedy and full recovery and I'm sure that your youth and vitality will make you better than new in no time at all.
Be patient with your body's adjustments to the surgery and remember that all of us have gone through these hoops.
My name is Tobi Brokke, I am Renee Westlake's oldest daughter. I have been keeping up with your progress through my mom. I just wanted to let you know that I have been thinking of you and praying for all the best. You and your family are such an inspiration! Keep up the great outlook. I will continue to pray for a speedy recovery for you. :)
Its David and Denise Carswell over here in Hawaii. We just want you to know that we are praying for you everyday. You are such a special person and God has surrounded you with such an amazing family, and sounds like lots and lots of friends, what a great support network you have, and what an amazing influence you have been on so many people' s lives. Hang in there and get well soon. We are waiting for you to come visit us in Hawaii some day, soon!!
May the Lord continue to watch over you and your family.
David and Denise
The toughest week is over now. There will be ups and downs, but it will get better. I saw my cardiologist today and, almost 7 months after surgery, was given the green light to do anything I want. Hang in there, and before you know it you will be up to full speed.
Praise God that you continue to improve. Thank you for sharing your story with others. Rachel Schlender babysits for us and Theresa told me about your surgery. I have been where your parents currently are as my son also had open heart with numerous complications afterwards. Continue to cling to God and watch His workings in you and your family. I believe that those who go through open heart truly have a unique view on life and an energy that is only understood by God. I will be praying for less fluid and complete recovery. Thank you, Doug, for sharing a father's perspective. May God bless and heal you, Kristin Sayre
Dear James, Sandy, and Doug,
You are all in my thoughts and prayers as recovery continues. Lots of love, care, and prayers are being sent your way by my five siblings , my two adult children, and my Mother. They all remember going through a similar process with me many years ago. We're all rooting for you, James! Love, Miss Linda
James- I hope and pray for a speedy recovery! You are a strong person and you are in God's hands. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers daily. We miss and love you very much. Stay strong buddy!
"The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you: he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Deut. 31:8
James-Sandy-Doug, We know that one week must seem like an eternity, but we're so glad you are having good quality time together. Our prayers for the swelling to go down, lungs recoup, and your faith to stay strong. We love you all! Grma & Grpa
My name is Cindy Smith, my son's Brandon and Jason attend the Tues. noon Bible study with the other BHS kids. I am involved in the high school Mom's in Touch prayer group and we meet each Monday morning to pray for our kids and schools. Please know that we are earnestly praying for James as a group each Monday (and on our own every day). James, we lift you up to the Lord and trust His healing power! Thank you for this web site so we can keep up with your progress and specific prayer requests. Brandon and Jason are also praying each night for James and enjoy the updates. Stay strong in the Lord! He is good!
"Interesting" conversation, music and baby steps make for memorable moments....such joy for all. It's the small things that count so very much right now. Blessings to all,
Ron & Marcia Anderson (Haley's Grdparents)
Hello, Sweet Baby James! Parker has been grumbling that you are getting all the attention and now pretends he has a headache too! I do hope that headache goes away soon, and that the fluid around your lungs clears. So glad you have a music therapist!! That can only make all the cells in your brain stand to attention and get to work making all those wonderful new connections that brains are so good at making! I have been doing some research on the brain and what I've read so far is just amazing! The upshot is this: the sky's the limit! So don't you forget that when things don't progress as fast as you'd like! Keep moving as much as you can and sleeping/resting lots, too, and God will do the rest. Much love, Anna & Parker (who is apparently not too jealous to send love...!)
Hi James, Sandy, and Doug, You are all in my prayers every day. James and Doug probably don't remember me, but I am the daughter-in-law of Gladys Warwood who dearly loved all of your boys. I have talked to Sandy a couple of times recently (at the Ellen and at Highgate) where James was playing. Such a fabulous talent! We rejoiced when you won at Hawks Night Live and I have really enjoyed hearing you whenever possible. So I know that God is watching over you and will hold you close. I have faith that He will heal you and let your talent shine. Besides there is a University (of Miami) waiting to hear you add your talent to their music program. Best wishes and all of our prayers go out to you for a speedy and complete recovery. Nettie Warwood
You don't know us well, but I want you to know that Claire (Chase's 9 year-old sister) heard Chase and I talking about your surgery the other day. She remembers that you knew her name when you came over with Hayden. Since our conversation, she prays for you. I believe you made an impression on her and that you touch the lives of many people through your beautiful music and vibrant personality. May God bless you and your family. You are in our prayers.
Hey James, I dreamt about you last night. You were playing your fiddle better than ever and I was so happy! You remain in our thoughts and prayers and I am grateful for whoever (I'm guessing Sandy) is tending to your journal.
I've been following the updates and my heart goes out to you and your family for enduring this journey so bravely. I wish I could be there to sing for you to bring you some peace from your headaches. Thinking of you always.
James, it was so great to talk to you today! I am glad that you are feeling better, are more alert and able to get back to normal. It's pretty cool that God is walking you through this whole process, and I am praying for a full recovery quickly! I hear you are getting pretty fuzzy, I'd like to see the beard soon. I am excited to introduce you to my daughter soon!
Hi James! I miss you so much! Its hard to get through orchestra without laughing at your jokes or your overall dorkiness :) but we are all really trying to trust God in this situation. Just wanted to say that you are an incredible disciple of Jesus who radiates Gods love to everyone you meet and I am so incredibly blessed to know you and to have you in my life. I've been praying without ceasing for this time to ignite a fire for the Lord even bigger than the one I already know you have, and that you would just have peace while you're there. I remember one tuesday morning when you thanked God for the challenges and struggles in life and asked Him for more of them because of how much you love growing closer to Him. You're an inspiration and i love you and miss you so much James!
James, hello second-cousin. :-) I've been following your progress through my cousin (your uncle) Kevin on facebook, but I've only recently learned of your Journal here. I'm not sure we've ever met, if we have it would have been along time ago when you were a little guy, and most likely at your Grandma Schlender's house. :-) My husband Jim (he's a James, too) and I are thinking of you often and praying each day for your continued recovery. You can find us on facebook when you're up to it. We love you and hope you stay encouraged. God Bless, Kellie and Jim Gower
James, I hear you are already making progress--just as I expected! John and I went to the movies yesterday and shared such a large container of popcorn that we could not manage it between us-if only you had been there to help us out with this! We can't wait to have you back here--Gale Court seems so lonely without its fiddler-in-residence! Rest, rest, rest, dear James, and let your body heal. The summer stretched before us, and we intend to make every minute count with you back among us! We are already planning picnics, even if we have to have them in the back yard at first. Love from Anna and Parker
Hi James & Family,
Thank you for having this guestbook and journal for us to keep in touch with you. We have been praying for you James, and believe that God has great things in store for you. He is there and He is in control. We pray that you will keep your faith strong and that you will not get discouraged.
We'll look forward to your return to Journey Church a stronger person than you were before you left.
God's peace to you all,
Jeff & Julie Nichols
Wow. You guys have been on my heart and the hearts of my family so much this week. So many pleadings and prayers have gone up to our Savior on your behalf, and we know that He is good. As I've been thinking of you all, I've been remembering lots of the memories we've made over the years...Road trips to fiddle contests being some of them. I remember watching Little House on the Prairie with James and John in the backseat, and we'd turn it up too loud and poor Doug couldn't hear his phone calls....And the time when James courageously slew the wasp in our tent so we wouldn't get stung to death when he and John and I were supposed to be taking a nap. (wasps were scary things to my 10 year old self) And we can't forget Jamestown and that one picture of the tree that made everybody laugh so hard because it looked like you-know-what...
Keep clinging to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith....We're all lifting you guys up in prayer.
Dear James, Happy Monday! We rejoice in every single good word we read in your journal and try to travel with you in every challenge you face. You are greatly loved and highly thought of! Doug, thank you for speaking from the heart today. Sandy, thank you for all you have done to keep everyone connected when you all must be so preoccupied! Jesse and Brianna, I'm so glad you could come and visit - and Jesse the Children's Hospital is blessed to have you play! I know it has meant a lot to James. May tonight be healing and restful. Reneé Westlake
I thank you for sharing all the info on James but also your love and caring. I read Doug's entry with tears in my eyes---and then the wonderful picture of James with the fiddle in his hand. We will keep praying. I found a scripture today
"I had fainted , unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart; wait, I say, on the Lord."
We are waiting!!!!!!
Terri and Mike Kelly
This is Jared and Rebecca! We miss you guys so much. It's been hard being so far from you during this time. James, you're a little stud. Even through all of this, I'm sure your hair looks awesome (that was Rebecca). I hear the nurses are swooning at your smooth moves. :) Atta boy. We miss you bud, this aint no thang... You've got the BIGGEST heart out of anyone I know. ;) We love you guys!! See you back in the state that didn't get the memo that it's supposed to be summer!
Hey James! I'm working at the APEC conference in Big Sky this week and staying at the Journey condo. I only have access to the internet while working at the conference and when I have a free miniute the first thing I log onto is your journal to get the daily update. Always want to know how you are doing. I crashed a Journey small group in Big Sky last night - at Chad & Rebecca Liddle's house - and we all prayed for you. I feel so much peace about your future and continue to pray for you every time the Holy Spirit brings you to mind - which is often. Can't wait for the day you're back in Bozeman and standing on the Journey stage playing that fiddle! You're the best and we all love you lots. Keep that smile on your face and God's joy in your heart. Listen to worship music as much as possible - it has healing properties both physically and spiritually. Doug: loved your post and the scripture. Thanks for sharing. Sandy: you're doing great - keep up the good work. Strength, courage, joy and peace to you all in the name of Jesus! Tracie Jenkins
Aunt Sandy, Uncle Doug and James. I love and miss you all so very much and you are in my prayers daily. I sent this passage to you, James, a couple days before your surgery and wanted to share it with you again.
"Cast all of your anxiety on Him because He cares for you! And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you Strong, Firm and Steadfast." 1 Peter 5:7,10 I love you all and cannot wait to see you guys when you come home.
Our dear James, You have many more people praying for you after yesterday. I told our Sunday School class about your surgery (many of whom know your dad) and Scott had it announced from the pulpit. Also have a prayer chain whose special ministry is prayer. Mary Jo Kurtz, who gave piano lessons to Scott, Kristen, Lisa and Pam was wanting more details, so we visited after class. Prayers are being lifted by the hundreds from Manhattan. God hears our supplications. We love and cherish you and pray for God's blessings on you. Gma and Gpa Schlender
James and Family,
Just wanted to say that we're praying along w/ everyone else for a full and complete recovery. So thankful to know God has you in His loving hands! Thank you for sharing the scripture in the latest post..Your testimony is living proof of God giving peace and assurance through His Word during the tough times. Keep on healing!
Anne, Luke, Elsa and Ava Bentz