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  • Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Joanne and I’ve been blogging for many years under the name The Simple Wife (you can see all of my old posts under the archives or by clicking on any of the categories that interest you). I love receiving comments from you and try to respond to each one personally. I hope you’ll visit often!

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« The Problem of Pain | Main | March 24 »


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Barb Motyka

Will be praying all day tomorrow! Good luck to Joanne-hope they schedule this as soon as they can. Keep up the great work!
Barb from CNY

Kristy Beckendorf

Praying for a great visit with the doctor - for that flap to be put back and behind ya'll very soon!!!
Praying for "Team Joanne" too - that God will give ya'll what you need to motivate, encourage and love her to do all she needs to do.
I appreciate your updates SO much. But so many times, I come on her blog and miss HER so much.... I can't wait till she's on here again!!!!


Prayers going up Toben! You are running well, friend. I know your wife is so proud of you.

Prayers from GA,

Elizabeth Mattson

God has gifted you with a support system and other friends at just the right time. Praising him in Texas on behalf of all of your family and trusting him for the strength to persevere.

Peace be with you all.
Texas Siesta

Amelia in NC

Big Prayers for Joanne! Praying Big Prayers for a Great appointment with the neurosurgeon. Big Prayers for "Team Joanne"!

Kathy Rivera

Encouraged by this post and the thought of that brother, who is in the race himself, sharing a cool drink with a fellow runner.
I think too about Joanne's dedication to fitness before this occured and how that will help her. she is an athlete, and just as you saw her wake up to her surroundings her body has a memory too.
God who foresees and foreknows is with you in this, at every level for each of you on team Joanne. His mercy for Wednesday is waiting in Wednesday. He is a your Father Toben.
Can you believe its still snowy in Idaho/ I can't either!!


Dear Toben,
You know Joanne has my prayers about tomorrow. And you are very right that you have a long road ahead. Seems like God put this man in your path for a reason today.
Sending prayers, love and hugs to Joanne and you!

Holly Smith

You know I am praying. And as a small part of Team Joanne, I have a few ideas forming to help encourage and spur. We'll see if God says yes to them. As I have said before, God is setting Joanne up for success...and He is also setting you up for access, dear brother. He holds each one of you close to His faithful heart.

Holly Smith

Oops Autofix...meant success...perhaps access is a good word, too!


So glad you had lunch with a friend that encouraged you. That is a blessing....and we all need someone like that in our life.

I will be praying for Joanne's appointment tomorrow and for the surgery to take place soon so she will not have to think about it anymore.

Praying for strength, endurance, wisdom and patience for team Joanne.

So thankful for your updates....and I am thankful to pray for whatever is needed. Yes...grateful for the opportunity.

Jen (from Redlands)

Child of God

Will be praying tomorrow Toben.

Thank you for keeping all of us so up to date. Joanne is a very blessed woman to have you as her husband!

Praying and praying,

Dedra Herod

Praying specifically and in this marathon with you.. however long it takes and then some.. I'm ALL IN!

Brad & Kim Oaster

We are so thankful for your lunch buddy today! Here's two things to think about:

Expanding Team Joanne. It would be great if you would consider having a Night Shift. The purpose of the NS would be two fold: To ensure that you get adequate sleep and that Joanne has her needs met. And that Joanne would have a few more people surrounding her, giving her more outlets and of course interactions. You can seek volunteers from your inner circle and Bible Study. The Night Shift would run from 9:00 PM until 6 AM. You have enough women who are willing to help that you can have them scheduled for once a week or even once every two weeks. You cannot safely keep up this pace for the long haul. Please talk it through with your family. And let the Body of Christ move through life with you.

Also, the suggestion has come to have Joanne follow The Biggest Loser. The people on this show have many of the same life challenges as J. - Working so hard to be healthy. Overcoming pain with knowledge of how life will be bettered. Coming to an understanding that perseverance is necessary to make it long term. That pain will not overcome you. Think about it.

Love you! Brad & Kim


Still prayin' for y'all! Missing your girl on Twitter. Praying for her pain to subside. Hugs from So Cal.


Praying in Ky.


Will continue to pray for Joanne and her appointment tomorrow.

Courtney McDermed

I think numbness can be a tool to help you make it through this. I'm always amazed at people who can feel their feelings as things are happening. I'm a champ in the middle of a crisis but fall apart after it's over. Numbness helps you accomplish all that you need to do for others and to a certain extent, for yourself. It may be a blessing. Keeping you and your family, especially Joanne in my prayers.
~ Courtney
Whitworth College, class of '92

Paige Szajnuk

Praying for Team Joanne right now. God bless you all.

Theresa Roach

God gives us what we need and you needed some encouragement:) I'm praying in Georgia for a great appointment! HUGS!

Becky K.

Continuing to pray!

It sounds like you received and listened well to excellent advice over your lunchtime chat.
It is so very hard but God is not sprinting here either. He'll not get tired and quit in the middle of the race. Remember to stop at the "water and rest stops" from time to is so good to have the race analogy. From the crowds cheering you on to the knowledge that races have goals and finish lines, it is a great analogy.

On another note...I don't know how involved you are in the meds and such that they give Joanne, but our family member with a brain injury used to get horrible nausea when he was transported to doctors, etc. It may not be the case for Joanne but it was my first thought when you mentioned the appointment. You might want to check and see if they are going to give her something
for nausea before the trip. Just a thought for whatever it is worth.


Best wishes for tomorrow. I hope the surgery can go ahead speedily and that Joanne has her fear calmed. I certainly understand it, I would be worried but hopefully it will indeed see a big boost to Joanne's recovery and that can only be a good thing.


You all are still in my prayers. I will be praying as you meet with the neurosurgeon. God is huge and His power is unlimited. Praise.
Love and Blessings from Mississippi

Sheryl Dean

Just want you to know I'm praying for that appot with the neurosurgeon. I pray that God will be glorified and you and Joanne will be drawn into a closer and more intimate relationship with God and each other.

May HIS Name always be praised.



Continuing to pray for Joanne and her team! I hope it goes well with the neurosurgeon!


Morning Toben and Joanne :)
I'm supposed to be studying for a political science test I have in a few minutes, but instead I choose to stop by and check on y'all! I will be praying about your neuro appt and your continued marathon...YOU CAN DO IT!! I have faith that God will continue to carry you through this <3

Still praying in Texas!!
Love, Mere

P.S. How about making Team Joanne shirts?? :)


When my husband was sick for 9 months I felt most of the time like I was in an Indiana Jones Movie...I knew the ultimate goal but had to stop so many times and put out the lasted fire/need/emergency. If you knew me more you would know that is not my personality but it was the way life was.


Praying for blessings with visit, pain, support...whatever is needed...Prayer of works...Tell Joanne that God does have a plan for her to use this trial in her mission...lean on from a Christian sister in Louisiana


Praise God for wise friends!!! <3

Continuing to pray!


much love to all of you, toben!

Krystal Luaces

Recently I had about four weeks of struggle (nothing like your family's) and was reminded by God to take life simply one day at a time, one hour at a time, even one second at a time. I'm asking God to help all of you persevere step by step in this very challenging time. My heart hurts for you, and yet I praise God for the ministry your family is having to others in this journey. I am encouraged to hold on and persevere by your story!

Jessica VM

Honestly, Toben, I think you're brain is doing it's job by keeping you in the "numb" phase so you can do what you need to as a husband, as a dad, as a care-taker. God designed our brains to work like this so that we don't become overwhelmed and become ineffective. If you have days where you cry and are exhausted (which we know you are) that's ok too. You need a release valve for all the emotions you are feeling. Know you are loved and that you're doing a great job as husband, dad and care-taker. Praying that you have a good appointment tomorrow. Remember, this is happening to you, too.


Praise God for those who have walked the path before us and are willing to encourage us along the way. Thanking God for your lunch...and praying for Joanne's visit with the neurosurgeon today.

Kristi Walker

So thankful that you were able to meet with someone who really encourages you in your marathon! A nice cool drink...just when you needed it. I just love that.

We will be praying that Joanne's appointment goes well, and that when she does have her brain flap put back that it is quick recovery, and even quicker recovery after that! We'll be praying that Joanne's nerves are as calm as a cucumber. Our God calmed the storm and walked on water; He can certainly calm us, too! God is so HUGE...

So many prayers and Blessings sent your way!


I am continuing to pray for you, Joanne, and the girls. May God grant you wisdom and strength for each moment of the day!

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