I know I sent out an email that gave false hope and I am so sorry, but in all fairness, I truly believed Stacy would get better. I have spent the last 8 years of my life keeping him healthily and happy. I wanted to believe that he would be healed, that we would travel again. I wanted to believe that Stacy would be the first to walk into incorruption and immortality. Not to mention that he taught me that the ministry of a prophet is to build up, stir up and cheer up and as you can imagine, this suited me quite well as I am a positive person. Little did I suspect when I wrote the encouraging email that, in fact, he would not pull through. I mean, after all, it was an appendectomy. I did not know that people still die from a burst appendix.
Stacy got sick on March 8, 2007 and went into the local hospital. This hospital is not equipped for surgery, but he had to travel by ambulance and the drivers would NOt take him to the hospital 90 miles south of us. (I have been told it is state law). The hospital preformed a CT scan and found he had appendicitis. This hospital kept him 6 hours before the long drive south. When we arrived at the hospital in Canton, GA they decided he needed dialysis first as his potassium was too high for safe surgery. His access was clotted due to severe low blood pressure, so they waited until morning to put in a catheter, then preformed dialysis and the appendectomy finally around 2pm on Thursday. The appendix had burstand caused a hole to develop in his colon and his small intestine. The doctor removed about 12 inches of his colon and about 14 inches of his small intestine but the toxins from his colon poisoned his body. Stacy never really regained consciousness. He was in ICU with a ventilator and all kinds of medical drips to keep his body alive. His children, Jana & Stacy III and 2 grand daughters, came on Saturday and stayed until Monday. Sunday night a nurse told us that the ventilate might possibly come out on Tuesday, so the kids went back to Omaha, NE feeling like their Dad was going to get well again. On day 8 his doctor told me, if he lived, he would require months of rehab in a full-care live-in facility but would probably never get out of a wheelchair. She also said that his fever was going up. Stacy's body had an infection and they could not find the cause. It was in not his lungs, blood nor the surgery site.
Stacy and I had promised each other that we would never keep the other on life support if we were not going to come back at least as well as before we got in that condition. We both made out living wills. When I told the doctor she would have to take him off life support because of the living will, she agreed that she had to honor his request. His renal doctor also agreed it was the right choice. Removing the life support equipment was definitely the most difficult decision I have ever made. I did not make it alone though, Stacy's brother, Doug, after seeing Stacy said, "Pamla, he is not there, it's only his shell, we have to let him go now."
Doug and Doug's wife, Esther, were with him at the last breath. Three hours after removing all life support I stepped out for a bit of fresh air. I had been reading the Bible to him, singing silly songs, I told him I loved him, and rambled on saying all the things I knew I would never say again to my darling husband’s physical ears. I also told him this was his last chance to rise up and walk out of that hospital. When I returned Stacy already had drawn his last breath and Doug teased me by saying, it was a good thing I had left, as I wouldn't shut up long enough for Stacy to leave. On Wednesday, eight days after his admittance to the hospital, Stacy's body left us peacefully at 3:21pm.
I am so grateful for all he taught me and will continue to teach me. Although I would say my time with him was way too short, apparently Father has other plans for him now. Stacy is right were he has always wanted to be. Can’t you see him teaching a group who are staring at him with awe for all the knowledge God has given him? You see, Stacy and I do not believe that life quits when we cross over to the other side, instead we believe we continue teaching and learning and growing in the things of God. I can't wait until he comes to me in the night and whispers truths in my ear. How could it be otherwise? After all, he said he would never leave me nor forsake me. And he has kept his promise; I feel his love and comfort in a very real way.
I thank everyone who prayed for us the 8 days he was in the hospital and I want to say your prayers were answered. He is home and in no pain, and doing exactly what he loves. (Remember, he never called this earth his home). Stacy crossed over on the eighth day of his hospital stay, 8 signifies new beginnings. New beginnings for both Stacy and for me. We had just celebrated our 8th anniversary! Lots of 8's.
His body has been cremated. This is what he said he wanted. I am so thankful that the entire family also knew what he wanted so there was absolute agreement between us on what had to take place. We also agree that there will not be a memorial service here in Georgia, (although 2 of his brothers, Doug and Lee, and Esther and I are going to sprinkle his ashes over a trout stream. He loved fishing for trout when he was younger). If you feel the need to fellowship someone and remember all the good things about him, I am sure Stacy would be pleased if you do so over coffee or dinner. I assure you, he will be right in the midst of your conversation!
Now, I am in charge of running Promised Seed Ministries. The last eight years Stacy has been training me and while sitting at his feet I learned as quickly as my humble mind was able. I know Father has a plan and he will show me the way. I see the possibility of getting all the teaching videos made of Stacy while at Florida Theological Seminary put on DVD and perhaps up on the web. I also hope to make them available in our catalog. True, he was much younger but wouldn't it be fun to watch him teach again? I am getting invitations across the U.S. to visit and proclaim the good news of the happy God, who is Savior of all and condemner of none. Please keep me in your prayers as Stacy has left me his mantel and I am carrying on where he left off. We talked about it many times and I know it honors him.
If you feel to continue your support of Promised Seed Ministries, please continue sending all letters and support made out to Pamla Wood Gebhard, 205 Walnut Dr. Lakeport, CA 95453. I can be reached by mail through that address. If you want to talk to me personally, my home phone number is (707) 263-3875.
In “christed” love,