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Hallelujah! My Healing's Already Underway!

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GOD BLESS YOU!
Hallelujah!
My healing has already started.
First, I've learned that the tumor on the pituitary gland in my brain is benign.
Second, I've made a "dramatic response" to new medications I'm taking to help treat my end-stage congestive heart failure, which, Dr. Valluvan Jeevanandam, the University of Chicago Medical Center's world renown cardiac surgeon, had first felt signaled the need for me to get a heart transplant as soon as possible.
Third, my prostate cancer has been diagnosed as "localized" and "early-stage" by Dr. Glenn Gerber, UCMC urologist, and can be cured by a minimum invasive radiation-seeds-implant procedure called brachytherapy.
All this means that my healing indeed is in progress.
When I shared this news with the members of Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church Thursday night, where I was preaching their 83rd church anniversary revival, the Pastor Joseph Jackson and his saints there greeted the good news with a rousing standing ovation, spiced with shouts of "Hallalujah!" and "Thank you Jesus!"
"When I invited Rev. Banks to be our guest minister again this year, I knew we would get some good preaching because he is one of the best preachers in the world," Pastor Joseph Jackson said. "But this week, we not only got good preaching, we got some good healing, too."
In reference to my brain cancer, I have learned after talking with Dr. Allison Hahr, an endocrinologist at Northwestern Medial Faculty Facility, that, for all practical purposes, the tumor is benign.
"It's something that we will continue to watch to make sure it does not grow and get worse," she said. "In that case, you could need surgery. But in the interim, it's doing no harm. Right now, it's not secreting anything. I'll have a better idea after you have another MRI and urine analysis."
Second, yesterday (May 8), Dr. Allen Anderson, University of Chicago Medical Center cardiologist, told me "You are making a dramatic response to the new medicine and you doing much better than we expected."
"It's Jesus," I said. "Do you believe in miracles?"
"Yes, I do," he said.
"Well, I am a healing in progress," I said.
Dr. Anderson had examined me for the first time since my April 4 release from a five-day stay in UCMC, where they sent me through a battery of tests to clear me for a heart transplant.

Banks battles two cancers and bad heart

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God bless you.

Welcome to the story of the adventure of the healing process that I am undergoing.

My blog will take you with me as I go from serious sickness to, I hope, miraculous recovery, by the grace of God and the aid of God-gifted doctors and nurses.

First, let me describe our outbound point of origin. Last month, destiny dealt me a triple dose of trauma. Doctors at the University of Chicago and Northwestern hospitals examined me over a two-week span and diagnosed three big problems:

• • Brain cancer, which might require surgery.

• • End-stage congestive heart failure, which definitely requires a heart transplant.

• • Prostate cancer, which also definitely requires surgery.

Any one of these diagnoses is enough to drape a man with doom and gloom. But the Lord has seen fit to visit me with all three.

I am a 64-year-old black man, a Sun-Times reporter for 35 years, a Baptist preacher for 55 years.

I have a family history of congestive heart failure, which killed my oldest and youngest siblings, my father and an aunt, and of prostate cancer, which killed three uncles.

Now, it's my turn to tangle with both of those terrors, and brain cancer, too.

Each diagnosis hit me like a proverbial ton of bricks, drove me to my knees in prayer, made me tell my wife and children, to their despair, and motivated me to surf the Internet and question doctors to see what information they could share.

Many doctors prefer that their patients be simple, silent and totally surrendered to whatsoever they suggest.

But it's my life at stake. I already underwent a cardiac triple-bypass in 2001 -- when I was sawed open, had three ribs broken and had a plastic surgeon fail to stabilize my sternum, or breast bone, with experimental titanium plates. The latter required me to undergo a subsequent serious surgery three months later to have the plates replaced with the standard steel sutures.

Since then, I have been determined to make sure I communicate more closely with my doctors, ask as many questions as possible, talk to as many patients as possible and get as much published information as possible to enable me to know exactly what it is that doctors say I have, what options are available, how they compare in effecting a cure -- and how much time do I have for ME to make the decision as to what will be done.

In other words, I have promoted myself to being CEO, as best I can, of my medical dream team, where, first and foremost, God is my primary-care physician.

I invite your feedback after each posting. I am most eager to hear from people who have recovered from similar medical issues, or are still dealing with them, or are caregivers for someone else who has dealt with them.

I cordially invite you all to watch God heal me.

Right now, I actually feel good. I take 10 different pills a day, run at least a mile on my treadmill, eat responsibly, don't do anything strenuous and get plenty of prayer and rest as I also schedule the surgeries that I feel are in my best interests -- unless God postpones them with a cataclysmic healing.

It's going to be one of the strangest, most exciting and -- I hope -- enlightening tales you'll ever read.

Lacy J. Banks

Lacy J. Banks, 67, has been a Sun-Times sportswriter/columnist for 38 years and a Baptist preacher for 58 years. He has preached at more than 100 different churches in the Chicago area. A native of Lyon, Miss., Banks graduated from the University of Kansas with a B.A. in French and he served three years in the Vietnam War as a U.S. Naval officer. Lacy and wife, Joyce, have been married 42 years and have three daughters and five grandchildren. Among beats Banks has covered for the Sun-Times are the Bulls, Fire, defunct Sting, Blackhawks, Wolves, Cubs, defunct Hussle, Rush, Sky, college football and basketball and pro boxing.

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