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"Ivy's League" continued...

GIOA: What kind of treatment is available for a person with Cystic Fibrosis?

Julie Thomas: Most often, treatment for Cystic Fibrosis begins with techniques to trigger strong coughs that help loosen and clear thick mucus from the airways. Of course, airway clearance is just one part of the treatment routine. Nutrition and drug therapies are also important for children and adults with Cystic Fibrosis.

GIOA: What has God taught you through Ivy and this organization?

Julie Thomas: Having a child with a terminal illness definitely puts things into perspective. God has taught us as a family to live each day to the fullest! Terminal illness or not, no one is guaranteed tomorrow.

GIOA: What encouragement can you offer a family facing this disease?

Julie Thomas: Being told Ivy had CF was devastating. Nothing can prepare you for that kind of news. I ran the gamut of emotions after receiving her diagnosis... sadness, fear, despair. The first few months were exhausting. We had LONG appointments with LOTS of information thrown at us. We had to become experts on a disease we knew very little about. However, over time, it does get easier. You get into a routine. There are still days where I get down about her having to battle such a terrible disease...but I continue to thank God for her and for what she means to our family.

I would also advise someone facing the disease to get connected to others who are facing the disease as well. I have met so many WONDERFUL people who have been in the fight long before Ivy even existed. They are a great resource when I have had questions.

GIOA: How would you address the question, “Why does God allow suffering?”

Julie Thomas: We live in a fallen world. Sin entered the world when Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden. As one author explained: “When we humans told God to shove off, He partially honored our request. Nature began to revolt. The earth was cursed. Genetic breakdown and disease began. Pain and death became part of the human experience.” Though suffering isn’t good, God can use it to accomplish good. He does this by fulfilling His promise in Romans 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Notice that the verse doesn’t say God causes suffering, just that he promises to cause good to emerge. Notice too that the verse doesn’t say when we’ll see the good emerge. It may not even be in this life...but He promises that good WILL emerge.

GIOA: Is there a particular Bible verse that is close to your heart?

Julie Thomas: A few weeks after receiving Ivy’s diagnosis, our house nearly burned to the ground on Thanksgiving Day when our microwave malfunctioned. We were not home at the time the fire started and are thankful the fire departments responded as quickly as they did so that our home was not a complete loss. As traumatic as this was, it was a blessing in disguise. We were able to get rid of our carpet and install a new air handler...renovations that would be to Ivy’s benefit! With the house fire and having received news that our sweet and beautiful daughter had been diagnosed with a terminal disease all within the same month, my husband and I relied heavily on scripture. Two in particular helped me get through such a trying time: John 16:33 - “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” I also love Romans 12:12 - “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”

GIOA: What do see for the future of Ivy’s League?

Julie Thomas: We have talked about forming a 501c3 organization for Ivy’s League but have not filed the paperwork at this time. This is something we would like to pursue in the future. At this time, our goal is to continue to fund research. Ivy’s League will not give up and will fight until CF = CURE FOUND!

www.ivysleague.net

From: Volume 1 - Issue 4


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