January 2016

DSC_0105
Christmas, 2015

I have been staring at a blank Word document for twenty minutes trying to find the words to say. I can’t bear where we’re at and the situation we are in. I can’t comprehend how we’ve gotten to this place. I can’t wrap my head around the fact that there is nothing left to do for Andrew except tell him how much I love him, hold his hand and be with him for very second we have left together. The doctors tell me death is imminent and that Andrew is going to die from this disease. There are no treatments, no clinical trials…there is nothing left to do. I struggle to grasp what they’ve told me and I spend my nights crying and moaning in pain as I think about losing the one I hold most dear and close to my heart- my husband. He is afraid of death and I am afraid of life. I’m afraid of life without Andrew Smith by my side as my spouse, my protector, my best friend, my everything. My heart breaks into a million pieces thinking of all who would lose so much if he goes- a friend, a son, a brother, a teammate, and an inspiration to us all. We would all lose so much because he has impacted every single person that he has ever come into contact with. His kindness is instantaneous to strangers and his caring nature and ever-gentle heart is felt by every person lucky enough to have any sort of relationship with him. Truly, Andrew exudes and shines the Light of Christ. Andrew is the perfect example of what God has called us to do here on earth; to love one another at every opportunity, to glorify Him in all that we say and do, and to preach the Gospel to the masses. But Andrew doesn’t even need words to do that preaching. The way Andrew lives every single day preaches the Word of God. One quote that Andrew and I have prayed over and try to instill in our lives together is “Be careful how you live; you will be the only Bible some people ever read.” Andrew and I strive to make our lives preach loudly instead of our lips and he has done that ever so beautifully. I’m so proud of him and there aren’t words to describe the honor I take in being his wife.

What the doctors tell me do not change my prayers. I still pray every waking moment for a miraculous healing. I ask that that is your specific prayers, as well. I ask that we all pray for God to reach down and touch Andrew’s body and rid it of this absolutely vicious disease. I ask that we all pray that God would remove all of the bad and replace it only with good, that He would touch his blood and remove the impurities and terror of this disease. My prayers haven’t changed, but I can admit that my faith has wavered at times. I don’t understand this. I know God is able. I know all God has to do is simply THINK healing over Andrew’s body and it would be done. So my constant prayer is that God will do so and until He intervenes, we will continue to intercede.

So while that is first and foremost my hope and my prayer, I also ask prayers for strength. The pain I feel each and every day makes me ache to my core; I feel it in every bone in my body and in every inch of my shattered heart. This is true heartbreak. Every day is hard and I’ve had to make decisions that no 24-year-old wife has any business making. I mourn for the future that every doctor keeps telling me I will not have with my husband. I grieve for the children Andrew and I didn’t get a chance to bear. I’m scared beyond belief as I have never pictured a future without Andrew. We fell in love in high school; there has never been another life in my mind that didn’t involve waking up to him each and every day. I need strength, but not just today, every single day from here on out if the Lord decides He is ready for Andrew. I need peace. Over the past 6 months, I have felt a constant mantra being spoken to me as I’ve prayed. “The healing is coming,” God has told me countless times. It is, of course, my deepest plea that that healing is of Andrew’s earthly body and that he and I have so many more years together. But I also understand that his promised healing may be Christ making Andrew whole and perfect in Heaven instead of here on earth. And it pains me to even write that sentence because I so selfishly want that healing now, at this very second, WITH ME. I desperately want Andrew to stay with me. So, so desperately. I understand fully why God would want Andrew with Him, but so do I.

I’m sorry to have broken all of your hearts this morning. It is not lost on me how many care so deeply for Andrew. He’s an easy one to love. So again, I ask for prayers for his miraculous healing- and soon. I ask for strength and peace. I ask that you keep Andrew, myself, and our families and friends in your thoughts and prayers during this extremely difficult time. God has granted us miracles before in Andrew’s life, He has saved it once before, and we pray and plead that He does it yet again.

Andrew has this verse underlined in his Bible & I know this is his heart and prayer every day: “Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or death.” (Philippians 1: 19-20)

103 thoughts on “January 2016

  1. My prayers are with you friend. I’m asking the Lord to wrap His beautiful arms around two beautiful souls who trust Him with their lives. Lord, I ask in Jesus Name that you bring comfort to this couple. Help them to feel your presence at this very moment and know that you have everything within your control. You know the plans you have for them, and it isn’t to harm them, but to give them a hope and a future. Reveal your plan to them clearly and let them be set at liberty to operate in that plan. Let them rest under your wing and under the shadow of the Almighty. I praise your name Lord. It’s in Christ Jesus I pray, Amen.

    1. I am a minister in the healing ministry. I was contacted tonight by a former major-league baseball player whose daughter attended Butler. They forwarded me your link. I have read your heartbreaking story. But the Christ in you Will bring the victory. I pray that His healing anointing will come up on you this very hour and flow through your mortal body in Jesus name and in Jesus name I curse every cancer cell just as Jesus cursed the fig tree and it withered and it died. So I pray in Jesus name this cancer will die and you will live and not die and declare the glory of the Lord! And I pray that the same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead will quicken your mortal body. I pray that Jesus will walk into the room as you rest and lay his holy Nailed pierced hand upon you and heal your body. And I asked that He sends the angel of the Lord and assigns it to you for your healing and full recovery. I leave this promise with you Psalms 41 verses one through three.

  2. My prayers are with you. I’m going to try to send you and Andrew a card each week to help me keep connected. I’m sure you have a host of family and friends around the country, so I want to be a part of it. The Philippians verse is beautiful, and as Andrew has noted it, especially for his life, it has special meaning for all of us. If I lived closer, I would offer to come and relieve you from time to time , but……. Both of you are in God’s hands – and as St. Francis of Assisi said, “Preach the word; and if necessary, use words.” You are setting a great example of walking this path with all that God has for you. My prayers are with you. Please give Andrew a hug for me! Thanks!

    Chuck

    Dr. Chuck Mealy Director of Volunteer Services Southern Wesleyan University 907 Wesleyan Drive | P.O. Box 1020 | Central, SC 29630 864.508.0555 http://www.swu.edu cmealy@swu.edu

  3. We are praying for peace, joy, healing, long life, a silence of the enemy, a engulfing of the spirit of God like you’ve never experienced before. We ask for Andrew’s blood to become pure and that every cell would do what God designed it to do. We curse the disease in Jesus name. We don’t know you but God does and He cares for you.

  4. Positive thoughts and prayers to you and the entire family!
    The Butler Nation is strong and behind you. If WE can do anything, please let us know and don’t be shy! Thinking of you both!

  5. thanks so much for sharing your heart. Such a sad letter, but so real too. I love how your break your heart wide open for all to see what you are going through. May God’s grace supernaturally abide in you and your whole family. My husband and I have been praying everyday for Andrew and you and the whole family. (I am a good friend of Marion Webster)

  6. You don’t know me but a friend shared your blog. Sending you all much love and prayers. There is a healer you might want to look up who is the most powerful healer on the planet right now- Mas Sajady. God bless.

  7. Dear Samantha and Andrew, Tony and I received your message and have spent much time this evening interceding before God’s throne. Our prayer is that our heavenly Father would heal completely Andrew and all those close to him. We believe Andrew’s healing would bring great glory to God and bless countless people around the world for as you stated this would be a second miracle of life. We are continuing to add our prayers to all of the others that are coming before His Throne. Love, Suzanne and Tony Twist

    Sent from my iPhone. Please excuse any mistakes or short messages.

  8. Sam, You don’t know me but I’m Aggie Schmank’s mom. Aggie has kept me updated on your blog and Andrew’s struggles. I wanted you to know how fond I have been of him & you as well, your perseverance, strength and faith is unlikely what many people your age have ever had to think about. I smile when I think about Andrew’s performance on the basketball court. I remember asking Aggie about him, he always appeared cool as a cucumber to me, never seemed worried about the challenges ahead, a great player to watch. Amazing what you can learn about a person just by watching him play in a few games. Thank you for sharing with everyone your feelings and especially yours and Andrew’s faithfulness and hope. I pray for him daily and you as well. I will continue to pray for a miracle for Andrew and peace for you and your family. God bless you both.

  9. Sending you love and prayers tonight. Your journey has been a brutal one and yet you two have been an inspiration to this Butler family. Know that God is with you and will comfort you. Sending you and Andrew prayers for peace.

  10. I was 8 when the 2009-10 butler team went to the national championship and one name that always stuck with me was Andrew Smith and I will be praying for you and your family and don’t give up hope miracles do happen.

  11. Sending prayers of comfort and peace to you, Andrew and all your family today. This sad news has reached all the way around the world. Love from Perth Australia – Mary Wolfla Butler class of 05

  12. You are both loved and prayed for. Pain is pain, but faith and hope are faith and hope. The latter 2 can wipe away all pain and in the name of JesusChrist we present this prayer, petition a request for earthly healing of Andrew’s body, remove cancer cells, provide healthy bone marrow for production of blood cells needed to provide life. To provide strength for day to day living and see strong heart to continue to worship, praise., share with others, speak His word and proclaim the word of God As The Only truth, And Surrendering To God, the only way. What more dear Lord, your people are praising you and at the same time begging You to put into action the miracle of healing, now, for Andrew and Samantha. Hear our prayer, dear Lord, and show us your mighty strength as You rid Andrew’s body of all cancer.

  13. We both will pray for you at time we must all face. Only our heavenly father truly knows the answer to all pain and suffering. We will pray for you and Andrew.

    1. I do not know you or Andrew, but I am praying for you both. If He leaves you from this earth, remember, he is still with you in spirit from heaven. My sister lost her young husband 2 years ago to cancer. We see signs everywhere that his spirit is here. She looks for signs and it helps her through tough days. She found a pure white feather in her bedroom one day laying on the hardwood floor. She called me frantic. That was a gift from God to assure her. And you have such faith you will surley have signs as well.
      Linda

  14. Andrew through you has reached out to me with the scripture that was a source of strength and comfort to him and shared that strength. I needed that exact scripture at this time. May our Fathers will be done….Bless you both….I will fervently be praying for you.

  15. Sam,
    I can’t begin to find words to comfort the relentless ache your heart is enduring, but I do believe in the power of prayer, and know that our Great Divine has a plan for you and your family. I pray that plan involves a miracle for instant healing for Andrew which allows for years of fulfilling all of your spoken (and unspoken) dreams together, that only seems fair for such a wonderful, young, inspiring couple so full of love and ferver. In times like this I review in my head, “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.” Romans 8:28…I will pray, and pray hard for strength, comfort and healing for you and your families.

  16. I can feel your pain. Having been there only a few months ago and losing my best friend only 5 weeks ago, I have only one piece of advice. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you how to do it or what to do. Follow your heart, what is left of it. Listen to Andrew. His wants and needs. Carry his love with you. Your heart is shattered. I am just beginning to be able to pick up some pieces. Unable to go out in public. Everyone says it will get better. What is better without him? Just allow yourself alone time and cry time. I talk to my lovest every morning and every night as though he is next to me. Just follow your heart. My heart truly breaks for you.

  17. You two are in Jake and I’s every prayer. Reading this post and the comments that follow remind me what a powerful cloud of witnesses the two of you have. I’ve got Mark Schultz’ “Cloud of Witnesses” on repeat today, praying for your comfort, His presence, and a miracle nonstop. You are so loved by our Savior.

  18. Samantha-
    We met you and your husband 8-10 months ago off and on while my wife was undergoing chemo as well. We were both impressed with how well you were handling things and thought you and Andrew were delightful people. As the months have gone by I would occasionally read an article cc your husband, via Indystar or sports website, it is with utter shock and sadness we read of your situation. I wish I could say or do something, I like you feel utterly powerless with our only hope and resolution in the Fathers healing power. We will offer up our prayers for you and Andrew.
    In Him
    Jason

  19. my heart aches for you and your family. No one understands what God has in store for use. We only know that he has a plan. I pray that you find peace in your heart. I pray that the Sutter-Smith family has the healing and the encouragement that they need in this time of spiritual pain. God bless you all.

  20. We pray for complete healing for Andrew, strength for you and all your friends and family.
    I can tell how much you admire Andrew for who he is, I know through your posts and blogs how grateful he must feel to have you fighting and keeping him going. Caregivers have an impact that they never realize how much they do by being the hugger, handholder, smiling when you don’t feel it, and feel the pain their loved one is going thru! In prayers all day yesterday , that thought was made clear to me, as much as we admire Andrew for his own courage and strength, everyone’s posts seem to feel that about you too. I prayed not knowing you or Andrew personally but admiring your walk thru this journey and your honest and heartfelt words that have inspired us all. I hope you continue to feel all the prayers you both are receiving.
    In Christ,
    Michele

  21. Reblogged this on Roman Observations and commented:
    I’ve brought Mr. & Mrs. Smith’s intentions (specifically their request for miraculous healing) before Our Lord, through the Ven. Servant of God, Fr. Emil Kapuan, whose intercession I have sought in prayer. I understand the Smiths are Evangelicals, and I hope they are not scandalized by my decision: I am Catholic, and do not know how to do otherwise. In any case, I understand that I am only asking a righteous man – whose prayer Holy Writ tells us availeth much – to pray for them and for me and for all of us. I also prayed for them in a general way to Our Lady – though I promise I was very careful not to ask her to do anything except pray for us all in turn. In fact, the whole structure of the prayer I offered, it now strikes me, is a rehearsal of the testimony regarding Mary that we find in Scripture, followed by a prayer request: “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.” Amen.

  22. Hi Sam,
    You don’t know me, but…we are sisters in Christ and sisters in basketball (I’m a Dukie. Don’t hold it against me.)
    Mark 6:50 got me through my twins being born prematurely:
    “Take courage. It is I. Do not be afraid.” That’s what Jesus said to His disciples when they saw him walking on stormy seas, and feared him. Then He got into their boat and immediately the storm calmed.
    He is in your boat. I know you know.

  23. Matt and I are praying earnestly for you both. In this time of deep sorrow and uncertainty, we pray that your circumstances can be a beautiful reminder of why Christ went to the cross for us – to conquer sin and death. As the Jesus Storybook Bible so eloquently puts it: to make everything sad come untrue.

    “When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’ ‘O death, where is your victory? O, death where is your sting?’ The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the VICTORY through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” – 1 Corinthians 15:54-58

  24. I just read that Andrew went to be with our Lord and Savior. There are no words for your loss. I know heaven has gained an angel and Andrew touched so many lives here on earth. Even lives you nor he may never know. I have 1 child currently at Covenant and 1 who graduated a few years back so I have followed you and Andrew’s journey. God Bless you as you continue your life. Know that God must have a plan for you although it seems impossible. I will be praying for you along with a huge community of people who you and Andrew have touched. God Bless you!
    Teresa Hay

  25. Samantha, I do not know your family personally have been forever touched by your story. After hearing the heartbreaking news today I hit my knees in instant prayer. For your husband, you, your family, friends and the lives of people that will be touched and hear the name of Jesus from your story. You have handled this unimaginable situation with such grace and proclaimed your faith and the name of the Lord. I will continue to pray for you and hope that after this sadness you will be able to rejoice in knowing Andrew is playing basketball in heaven and is at peace. God bless you sister in Christ.

  26. Dear Samantha,

    My name is Samantha too, and I found your blog when my spouse got her cancer diagnosis. I didn’t know then who you or your husband were, only that you were somewhere in your journey…a journey that, like you, I didn’t and don’t want to be on. I’ve thought of you often over the last months and I just found your blog again by accident and have since discovered your loss.

    As tears for you and yours, and fear for me and mine, well up and pour out…I want to say thank you. Thank you both for reminding me that my God is an awesome God and my job right now is to hold on to Him while bringing my spouse as close to Him as I can. I am terrified and you are in the belly of that terror. Thank you. I am so sorry, dear one who I will never meet, but thank you for putting yourselves out there for people like me who are drowning in the same horrid place. Absolutely nothing was in vain, despite how cold that comfort is right now. I get you. I get this.

  27. It breaks my heart to know how much you’re hurting. Although I don’t know either of you, my heart aches for a being facing such deep and painful loss. Please know that I will pray for your peace, comfort and strength tonight. Although it will be a difficult night and many more to follow, know that the Holy Spirit is there with you. I always ask to hold me tight when I feel deep pain overtaking me. May the Lord be with you. Rest in peace Andrew.

  28. Hi Samantha, I am Pete Nees’s sister and have been praying for you and Andrew. I really don’t have the words to say. I know Andrew was such a role model for Brandon. You are right, he rubbed off on everyone he touched. Including me. Love and prayers for you during this seemingly impossible time. Glad you know Jesus is with you every minute.

  29. While I don’t know you at all, you have ministered to me by simply writing your thoughts, your love, and … your brokenness. Thank you for transparently sharing your walk of love with your husband and your walk of trust in you God. I pray that God will bring healing and hope to your heart despite the passing of your husband.

  30. I listened to the Podcast of Andrew’s service yesterday. It was a such a moving and meaningful service. The faith, grace and generosity of Andrew’s family sets a very inspiring example. Please consider making the service available on the TPCC website so that people can access it on demand, or at least portions of it. The pastor’s message about how to answer the question “Why?” was very especially powerful and uplifting. Many could benefit from hearing it. Thank you for considering this request. Godspeed to you all. — A proud Butler alum

  31. Just read this. Never knew who he was. Not even a basketball fan. Just saw his obituary in a recent sports illustrated. This post has changed me. I can’t explain. I guess I just read a page from the two of yours bible. Thank you.

  32. Dear Mrs Smith,
    I am so sorry for to hear your story and i understand your burden. I will pray for Andrew and your family.
    I had several times nearly die on my bed i understand the fear of death, i believe everybody does.
    Praise Jesus, both of you still have faith in Him.
    Yes Lord Jesus will heal Andrew just believe in Him.

    Dear Mrs Smith, there are so much i want to tell you that your husband can be healed in Jesus Christ our Lord, but it can only be done if you know the root of his sickness. You and doctors can not deal with his sickness if you do not know the root of his sickness.

    All sickness come from satan- spiritually placed by cursing on people, just like Job (Job 2:7-8), you need to find the spiritual door in Andrew’s life which allows satan to curse Andrew.
    Andrew’s sin, his forefathers’s sin, own unholy things, hatred etc can be an open door for satan to curse Andrew.

    Satan can only operates through sin, except if God has another plan for men just like Job, but from the book of Job you see satan is the person responsible for sickness and death.

    Mrs. Smith,
    there are some circumtances that the healing of God does not happen to someone just by simply praying and believing. It is not because God does not want to heal men or because God wants it to happen, but rather God wants people to find /undertand the cause of the sickness so that they will not make the same mistakes or they will take lesson from it, repentance.

    I would suggest you read a book title “Unbroken Curses” by Daniela Brown, this book will give you more information about the root of sickness, the reason behind christian get sickness in their life.
    The book also will teach you how to deal with your sickness in Jesus name without money, operation or death. This is no promotion.

    The healing of Jesus is real for those who believe in Him.

    John 15:7

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