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The following e-mails were sent by Gina Gorman. They are posted here for those who may not have received them. If you would like to be added to the e-mail broadcast list to receive future updates, as well as weekly devotional e-mails by Mark, please click here or send an e-mail to updates@markgorman.com with "Subscribe" as the subject.

This page contains sequenced updates. For easy navigation, click the hyperlink below to automatically scroll down to that particular section within this page.

May 1, 2010
January 20, 2010
September 15, 2009
July 22, 2009
March 6, 2009
February 4, 2009
July 22, 2008
April 16, 2008
March 25, 2008
January 15, 2008
October 30, 2007
October 29, 2007
August 30, 2007

August 22, 2007
August 2, 2007
February 27, 2007
December 11, 2006
September 8, 2006
August 3, 2006
July 31, 2006
July 22, 2006
July 21, 2006
June 21, 2006
June 5, 2006
May 22, 2006
May 12, 2006
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April 25, 2006

May 1, 2010

Dear Ministry Partners and Friends,

Thank you, thank you, thank you! We appreciate each and every one of you who continue to stand with us, in faith, and prayer, believing for Mark’s total healing and health. And, we so appreciate all of you who have faithfully supported us with your cards, e-mails, words of encouragement, and of course, your financial support, especially now, when Mark is unable to travel, following his most recent spinal procedure.

 
When it comes to sending updates, on how Mark is doing, I sort of walk a tightrope, not knowing how much information is the right amount to share. If we give too much information, letting you know exactly what he’s facing, some people tend to view him as a cripple or an invalid, and think he’s "Out Of Business". They think he has stopped traveling and speaking forever. Can you imagine that?
 
And, if we don't tell enough, they forget that he’s going through anything at all, assuming that, since the procedure was 3 weeks ago, he’s probably fine by now. (Most people don't understand that the procedure's purpose is to create a certain amount of problems for the spine, to force it to regroup and re-organize the muscles, to solve its own problem, so it will pull the spine into proper alignment, and continue supporting itself in the future.)
 
For the past few days, Mark’s pain has been the worst yet, since the spinal procedure he received on April 5. In fact, a few days ago, he began having freakish jerks and muscle spasms, almost like mini-seizures. We eventually realized how and why it happens. 
 
The purpose of these spinal procedures is to selectively paralyze the primary (main) muscles in specific problematic areas throughout Mark’s spine.  Keep in mind, of the 26 discs in the typical human spine, 17 of Mark’s discs are diseased: (9 herniated, 8 bulging and 15 compressed), which leaves only 9 healthy discs. This is why the world-renowned Mayo Clinic told him that surgery is not an option. In fact, after 3 days of extensive testing, Mayo Clinic told him that:
  1. There is nothing that we can do to correct your condition, which appears to be genetic. 
  2. Your spinal condition will definitely worsen with age
  3. Also, the constant pain that you’ve endured for more than 30 years, will continue to intensify as you grow older.
 
That’s why we are so very grateful for the wonderful doctor we met here, in Nashville. Not only is he an absolute genius in regard to Mark’s condition, but also, he is the one who created the experimental approach, including the treatments, which Mark has been receiving for the past few years, since we moved to Tennessee following Hurricane Katrina. He is the ONLY doctor we know of, who has given us hope, that it may be possible to reverse or correct Mark’s condition, in part, or in whole.
 
The paralysis caused by the experimental spinal procedures, (which typically remains paralyzed for about 3 months) temporarily removes the function of those muscles, which had been doing all the ‘work’, supporting his spine. This ‘awakens’ the dormant muscles, which have NEVER supported his spine, forcing them to step into that ‘supportive’ role. But, since these muscles have been dormant for so long, when they fatigue, they REALLY fatigue – trembling, jerking and spasming. 
 
You may recall that, when Mark received the first of these experimental procedures, a few years ago, he had a similar experience, which was quite frightening, to say the least. That first procedure was focused specifically on some of his worst spinal problems, in the cervical spine (his neck). 
 
About 2 weeks after the procedure, when the paralysis was fully in effect, as he was talking to me one day, his head started wobbling & jerking, and he couldn't control it. 
 
Obviously, he was shocked - not knowing what was happening. The doctor asked us to come to his office, and when he examined Mark, he found that the previously dormant muscles, which were now being forced to support the weight of Mark’s head, would fatigue quickly, resulting in this spastic jerking. So, we had to cancel a few more weeks of speaking engagements, and wait for the outcome - to see how much longer it would take for things to stabilize. 
 
After about 2 or 3 more weeks, the muscles grew stronger, and he was able to stand, without his head jerking and wobbling.  And, I’m very happy to report that, since that time, which was at least two years ago, not only do those previously dormant muscles continue to properly support the head and neck, but also, the tone and strength of those muscles continues to improve on a daily basis.
 
So, I'm guessing that this may indicate that we’re in for another 2 or 3 weeks of this present situation, as his spine reacts to the spinal procedure he received on April 5.
 
By the way, this time, the procedure was focused on his low and mid spine, at the base of his largest curvature. So, as you might guess, since it's that far down, those muscles have an even bigger job, supporting much more weight above them. 
 
Last night, our friends Rick & Dianne Goodman brought food to the house, so we could have a meal with them. 
 
Just after Rick & Di arrived, Mark’s neck went into a severe spasm - bad pain. he ended up in bed for the rest of the night, unable to eat with us at all. That’s just how unpredictable it can be, during these few weeks, until his spinal muscles learn their function, and gain the strength and tone necessary to support Mark’s spine on a sustained basis.
 
So, that’s the update on Mark’s condition. He stands firm in FAITH, refusing to let any situation get him down! 
 
I’ve always said that, if Mark was as big on the outside, as he believes on the inside, you couldn’t get him through the door! He has BIG Faith, BIG Courage and ENORMOUS Determination. 
 
By the way, one added blessing during this difficult ‘season’ has been my diet, www.CajunDiet.com. Thank God for it! Although we don’t have hundreds and hundreds of ‘Cajun Diet Clients’, we continue to pick up new clients - nearly one a day! And, although we don’t charge huge amounts for the diet, we do make some profit from it, which helps to sustain us, along with your faithful support for the ministry.
 
So, please rejoice with us, that Mark’s spine has responded to the procedures in the past couple of years, with at least a 30% correction in the curvatures in his spinal structure. Also, keep praying and believing with us for even greater results from this present procedure, and those to come in the future.
 
One last note, if you have sent a message to Mark by mail or e-mail, or if you’ve left a voice message for a phone call he need to return, please bear with us, until he completes this process of recovery and healing, following the spinal procedure. Thank you, in advance, for your gracious understanding. And, if you need help with something in the meantime, please contact Mark’s assistant, Jason, Jason@markgorman.com.
 
And don’t forget, a few weeks from now, Mark will be back at it: traveling, preaching, singing, and telling his Cajun jokes, as well as motivational speaking in business conventions. 
 
DO NOT ASSUME THAT MARK GORMAN IS OUT OF BUSINESS!! HE WILL BE BACK ON THE ROAD SOON!
 
This is a temporary situation, due to the spinal procedure. But in a few weeks, Mark will be chomping at the bits, ready to get back out there!
 
So, contact Jason if you’d like to schedule Mark for an event.
 
We Love You,
Gina Gorman


January 20, 2010

Dear Friends and Partners,

 
This is Gina.  I wanted to give all of you a quick update on our family.  As you know, our daughter-in-law Krista had her tonsils removed on January 8th.  Thanks for all your prayers.  Her surgery went smoothly, but she had quite a few challenges with her recovery. 
 
She had a bad reaction to the pain medication they prescribed.  It took us a few days to find the problem, but we finally "got a clue" and got her on the proper medication.  It is amazing how quickly she started recovering, once her body wasn't fighting against the wrong medicine.  She is almost totally recovered - Praise the Lord!
 
As you know, Mark continues to fight the battle with his own health challenges.  His doctor says that Mark has the worst spinal condition of this type, that he’s ever seen, and Mark has more herniated and bulging discs in his back than any of his other patients. He doesn't understand how Mark can endure the pain. He always "champions" Mark for not giving up. 
 
In spite of the medication he takes to ease the pain, Mark is never "pain free".  That's just how awful it is.
 
Due to the level of constant pain, he grinds his teeth (bruxism) in his sleep.  The bruxism is his body's reaction to the pain.  In spite of sleeping with a mouth-guard, he has actually fractured and broken several teeth in the past few years.  Recently, his pain levels have been higher than usual, and he has broken yet another tooth in response the pain. 
 
Last night the top half of the tooth (a molar) broke off. The remaining root structure, beneath the gum line, has developed an abscess, so his jaw is swollen from the infection.  Today he started taking antibiotics to kill the infection, before we can have the rest of the tooth (the root structure) removed by an oral surgeon. 
 
He is having a very tough time right now.  Please keep him in your prayers.  We know that God is able to completely heal his body.  Today he was going to record a new message on Video, but we had to reschedule that recording, due to the pain and the obviously swollen jaw.
 
Please keep him in your prayers, as we couldn't get an appointment with the oral surgeon until next week. 
 
The Bible says, in Isaiah 59:19, that when the enemy comes in like a flood, God will raise up a standard against him.  We have been under attack, and we would appreciate you joining your faith with ours for God to "raise up that standard" to defend us from this obvious flood of attacks from the enemy. 
 
We love you and thank God for each of you.  I have said over and over again, that you, our faithful partners, keep this ministry going.  If God should lay it on your heart to sow a seed at this time, please do so.  We have been asking God to give our partners "new harvests" for the New Year.  Spring is just around the corner, and now is the time to plant seed for a new crop of harvest this year.
 
2010 is the start of a new decade.  It is a time of New Beginnings!  We are believing God for bigger and greater things this year - for this new decade – for us – for you & your family – for this ministry – for our nation & our world.   
 
As Mark always says, “EXPECT HARVEST”!
 
Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

September 15, 2009

Partners, Supporters and Friends,

 
We appreciate the love and support you have shown our ministry in the recent past, especially those who have faithfully tuned in week after week for our weekly webcasts.  For this week, however, Gina felt that we should cancel the Webcast which was scheduled for tonight.  She said that, in the past few weeks, Mark's spine & neck pain has become very intense.
 
 
His doctor told us that, because of the shifting in his spinal posture, in response to the spinal procedures, his pain is now at least 2 to 3 times what it had been. Also, the pain medications often make him ill. This has made it very difficult for him to sleep.
 
And, we apologize to any of you who are waiting for an e-mail reply or call from Mark. But, for the past few days, Gina has removed the phone from their bedroom, hoping he can get some rest.
 
IN SPITE OF ALL THIS, Mark refuses to give up. Here is an excerpt from an e-mail he recently sent to me:
 
"... I am convinced that, as the earth goes through 4 different seasons each year, so also, our lives experience cycles, seasons.  And the key is not always to run at full speed, because sometimes, that isn't even an option.  For me, now, at this moment, I can't run at full speed. 

And, although I do believe that attitude, belief, desire are a MAJOR part of what determines our personal success or failure, I've learned that desire and passion aren't enough, without ability. 

And, although I have great belief, desire, courage, determination, I also realize that at this time, those attitudes & emotions are short-circuited by my physical limitations."


 
Through his pain he continued to write:
 
"God has HUGE plans for me, and before He designed my destiny, He already knew everything that I would go through and all the pain I'd encounter in my life.
 

 
And I know, for certain, that I have not nearly achieved the destiny He designed for me. So, that means that, if I'm stubborn enough - determined and persistent enough, I'll still be here when my next season arrives, and it will be my greatest, most productive time of my entire life."

We are praying faithfully for healing for Mark and for the support of the ministry.  PLEASE JOIN US in our prayers.
 

Jason

Assistant to Mark Gorman

July 22, 2009

...Now, for the Great News, let me give you an update on Mark. To be clear, my man is still fighting an uphill battle. And I know that there are many of you who love Mark, and are concerned to learn of his progress in his ongoing fight with pain. But we also have some very encouraging news about his spinal procedures, to share with you.

I accompanied Mark on his monthly visit to his spine and pain specialist. The doctor was amazed and thrilled. He told us that the spinal posture has changed significantly, with much greater straightening than he had expected.

(You may recall that Mark has been receiving experimental procedures from this doctor for the past 3 ½ years. He told us that Mark is the first person ever to receive this type of treatments. Because of Mark’s significant progress, it is likely that his case study may eventually appear in medical journals. The reason this is so important is because it could pave the way for others to receive the same procedures in the future. And although our health insurance company has refused to pay for Mark to receive these procedures, or the expensive medications, Mark’s case could set the stage for future studies which would validate this as an accepted medical approach. Eventually, health insurance companies may pay for others to benefit from this treatment plan, without burdening the patient with such high medical costs.)

Because Mark has had this spinal condition since age 12, some of the muscle groups have been in constant spasm for many years. By injecting medications to unlock these muscles, forcing them to release for up to 3 months at a time, it allows the brain to engage other muscles which have been dormant for many years, not giving support to the spine. But remember, because these muscles haven’t worked for years, they aren’t capable of immediately assuming their proper role supporting the overall spinal structure. This is why Mark cannot travel for approximately 2 months after each of these procedures, because his spine cannot support itself for the first few weeks, so he has to do specific strenuous exercises throughout each day until the previously dormant muscles wake up and start doing their job.

When the doctor examined Mark, and saw a much greater correction of the spine than had been expected, he was so happy he almost shouted. He said that Mark’s diligent commitment to the difficult, sometimes painful exercises had accelerated the process of straightening his spine. Then the doctor explained that this is why Mark’s pain levels have been extremely high for the past several months. Basically, the spine, which has been distorted and disfigured for 39 years, is now being forced to change its posture.

Not only are the vertebrae, the discs and muscles of the spine being re-positioned, but also, Mark’s rib cage, pelvis, shoulders, etc., which were all out of place, are now beginning to respond as well. So, when you realize how much of his body is being affected, it’s easy to understand why his pain can be so debilitating.

This doctor tells us that Mark is a walking miracle, because although he has the worst spinal condition of this type that he’s ever seen, Mark is also the most active, productive, determined patient he’s ever known. And, with 17 diseased discs, (9 herniated & 8 bulging), Mark is more active than many patients who have only one or two bad discs, and spend their lives in a wheelchair or hospital bed.

You may recall me recently describing one of the side-effects, resulting from Mark’s spinal condition, which is fractured and broken teeth. Who would have thought that spinal disease would cause dental problems?

But, keep in mind that he has lived in constant pain since age 12, so he’s in pain all the time, even when he sleeps. The pain levels cause him to grind his teeth in his sleep, as many people do. It’s called “bruxing”. But Mark’s bruxism is much more intense than usual. And, although he wears a dental bite guard when he sleeps, his bruxing is so intense that he has actually broken and fractured 7 teeth in the past 18 months.

And last week, after dealing with an abscessed molar, which required a root canal, plus 2 front teeth, which have been re-attached 5 times, and are now only held by a temporary splint, we learned that he actually needs to have his entire mouth rebuilt, from the gums up! More fun!

In fact, some of the recent problems have even affected his ability to travel and speak. And now, we’re working frantically to do what we can to get back on schedule with the CD of the Month. And to our Ministry Partners, we apologize for the delay.

Mark still has not experienced the complete healing that he’s sought since the age of 12, but I’m so proud to say that, after 39 years of pain, he still hasn’t given up! And he’s not quitting now.


I believe it has taken much more faith for him to persevere for nearly 40 years, in constant pain, yet still pressing on, to travel around the world, sharing Jesus, not only with those in churches, but also in business events, with as many as 40,000 in attendance at a single event.

Many of you look to Mark as a source of inspiration, to persevere in the face of adversity and pain in your own lives. And because of this, we sometimes struggle, not knowing whether to let you know when we are weary and even overwhelmed by what we are facing. I hope you don't lose respect for us, because we are letting you know about our own encounters with discouragement and pain. Many of you have told us that you love the way that "Mark shoots straight with you". Well we are shooting straight with you again, now. We have been hurting, not just physically, but also emotionally and financially.

For many years, I have always thanked you, our faithful partners for your love, prayers, and financial support. Well, I am being as sincere as I can, once again saying, “Thank You”. It truly means so much to Mark and me to know you are standing with us. Every trial that we have faced has either made us stronger, or has amplified the areas where we need to "grow".

The Bible says that God will not allow us to bear more than we are able. In the past few months, I have been telling the Lord, "Thanks for the compliment, you must really think I can bear more than I ever imagined I could handle." My peace comes from the knowledge that God truly loves us, and only wants the best for us.

Mark and I have talked on many occasions of how much more clearly we can see things, now that we have faced these storms in our own lives. We truly have more compassion and understanding than ever before. Mark and I both feel that we are "better" people for the trials we have come through. In spite of the difficulties which seem to surround us, just as Job faced and came back twice as strong in every area as he was before, we are claiming that same blessing from our Heavenly Father. I know that many of you are facing your own "giants" in your lives. Hang on, we will win, if we just don't quit!

Over the years, Mark and I have worked hard to prepare for our future, financially. So, when he had to take time off from travel & speaking, because of the spinal procedures, we were glad that we had saved some of what we had earned, so it was there when we didn’t have offerings, honorariums or speaking fees coming in.

But, when you’re unable to work for 5 months of each year, for 3 ½ years so far, eventually, you run out, no matter how much you’d saved along the way. Plus, Mark’s medical expenses which are not paid by insurance are about $40,000 a year.

And, as you know, Mark has always said that he would never ask you, our partners, for money. So, even when we didn’t know how we would pay the bills, Mark still refused to ask you for money, because he promised.

But I have never made that promise. So, as his wife, and his “partner” in this ministry, I am appealing to those of you who love Mark.

I say that because I already know, before we send this e-mail, that there will be some who will complain, and ask to be removed from our e-mail list. I never cease to be amazed at the number of people who want to join our Free e-mail list, so they can receive Mark’s teaching e-mails and glean from his wisdom, and his unique insights into God’s Word, and how it relates to our every day lives, but, the moment there is a mention of finances, they get offended.

So, if you do love Mark, and if you appreciate, and believe in this ministry, I’m asking you to consider sowing a seed. If Mark’s teaching, or his singing, or even his humor, have ever touched or blessed you, please take a moment to reach out to him now. He isn’t asking, but I am.

And if you do not wish to give, that is your choice. But please don’t criticize me for loving my husband, and trying to lift some of the burden he’s carrying. Just pray for us, that God will touch, and heal, and provide.

I pray God’s abundant blessings will be yours.

Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

 


March 6, 2009

 

Dear Friends,

 

It has been a few weeks since my last update on Mark.  Thanks to so many of you for your prayers and encouraging messages to Mark and me.  Tonight I wanted to give you the latest news on Mark. 

 

Since his last spinal procedure, Mark has been struggling with severe pain throughout his neck and spine.  The muscles and tendons are fighting against the shifting of the spinal structure.  Although Mark calls it "good pain", because it is producing "good results", it breaks my heart to see him hurting so badly.

 

As I told you in my last update, Mark’s doctor wanted him to stay home for two months after this procedure.  But Mark was determined to participate in our Marriage Conference two weeks ago.  He had to use a walking cane to get around, and had to sit on a stool to speak, but he was there.  Immediately after speaking in the Friday night session, one of the men helped him back to our hotel room.  After a difficult night of restless sleep, he woke up Saturday with his right jaw in severe pain. 

 

Mark's doctor has explained to us that the intense pain prevents him from reaching level 4 sleep, when the body can heal and repair itself.  He stays tense all night long because of the pain.  One of the side effects of this is bruxism, grinding his teeth, throughout the night.  Although he wears a specially fitted mouthpiece at night, he often wakes with his jaws sore and exhausted from the bruxism.  This is what he lives with on a "normal" basis.  

 

By Sunday evening, his jaw was throbbing and swollen.  It continued to worsen the next day.  We called our dentist, who started him on antibiotics.  We were now dealing with an abscess in his right jaw.

 

Basically, the intense spinal pain, since his last procedure, had caused him to grind his teeth so hard that it fractured one of his molars.  Imagine how much pressure it would take to fracture a molar, one of the largest teeth in the mouth.   

 

Yesterday I took Mark to the oral surgeon.  They had to put Mark to sleep, under general anesthesia, to extract the tooth.  So, last night he was in severe pain not only from the oral surgery, but also from the shifting of his spinal structure. 

 

The only foods he has been able to eat are yogurt, pudding and ice cream.  That's all he can tolerate with the pain in his jaw.  The oral surgeon put him on another round of antibiotics to prevent any further infection from setting in.  I feel so bad for him.  It's just awful to see him like this. 

 

As you might imagine, with him being unable to travel for two months, it has created a significant financial strain.  The added pressure of knowing this, has caused more stress, which affects his overall health, and causes increased pain levels.

 

Mark’s take on it is, that there are many people who live with much greater problems.  So, he counts his blessings.

 

But, I can tell you, as his wife, that he is living with a tremendous amount of pressure and pain. 

 

So, I want to say a special Thank You to those of you who have reached out with financial support in the time since his procedure. 

 

As you know so well, Mark is determined to live up to his promise, not to ask you to give to our ministry.  But, I never made that promise.  Ha!

 

Seriously, I want to thank those who have given, and to ask all of you to consider sowing a seed at this time. 

 

Just today, we received a letter from a man who sent $1,000.  He included a copy of the last e-mail I had sent, just after Mark’s spinal procedure.  His note said that this was “for Mark’s help, or to aid in the ministry”.

 

And, although we haven’t received many letters like that, we appreciate so much, the ones who have reached out to support us at this time.

 

As Mark’s wife, I want to ask you to consider sowing a seed into our ministry this week.  Without the ability to travel and speak, Mark is unable to do anything to provide the financial support needed for our ministry, and our family.

 

Over the past 3 years, Mark and I have used our personal savings to help sustain the ministry, during the times when he could not travel, because of the spinal procedures.  Also, the insurance company refuses to pay for most of the spinal procedures, and many of the medications.  So, those costs have fallen on us as well. 

 

I’m not complaining.  We thank God for all He has done for us.  But, I believe that many of you would agree that Mark has a ministry like no other.  His insights into the Bible, and how it applies to our daily lives, are so refreshing and powerful.  Many of you have told us, over the years, how great an impact Mark’s ministry has had in your life.

 

Now, I’m asking you to reach out to him, when he is battling for his health, and the future of this ministry.  Please consider sowing a seed today.

 

If you would like to sow a seed, to support our ministry, you may either call our ministry office during office hours, Monday-Friday at (615) 591-5900, or in our secure online store at http://www.markgorman.com/store/default.asp?page=13.

 

Sincerely,

Gina Gorman

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February 4, 2009

UPDATE ON MARK, FROM GINA:

 
Although we don’t mention it often, Mark is still fighting the battle with pain, from his spinal condition. As you know, since age 12, he has lived in almost constant pain, from a severe scoliosis, with 9 herniated discs, 8 bulging discs and 15 compressed discs. His new spinal doctor here, in Nashville, has been using cutting-edge, experimental procedures to cause a radical shift in the structure of Mark’s spine. In fact, by this time last year, we had seen a correction of approximately 30%.
 
Unfortunately, because of his inability to travel at times, following each of the spinal procedures, this had a significant impact on our ministry’s finances. And, since the procedures are classified as “experimental” (Mark is the only person in the world to ever receive these treatments for scoliosis.), the insurance company has refused to pay for them, and for the medications needed following each procedure.
 
Well, with reduced financial income in our ministry, we didn’t have the money to pay for more of the spinal procedures. So, Mark received only one of the spinal procedures in 2008. In fact, he went for nearly a year without the procedures. And, as a result, his spine began to shift back to its original posture, losing much of the progress we had made.
 
This caused a significant increase in pain for Mark. In fact, on the day of Kenneth’s wedding, Mark was in such terrible pain, he barely made it to the wedding. And, as one of the officiating ministers, he had to stand on the platform with the other ministers, when it was his turn to participate in the ceremony. Afterward, at the reception, he apologized to Kenneth & Krista, because he could not stay to see them off when they left that night. Instead, he had to be taken back to the hotel, during the reception, so he could lie down, to take the pressure off his spine.
 
I know that many of you will be frustrated with me for not having told you about this, before now. But Mark told me that he doesn’t want people to only think of us because of his pain. He has said on many occasions, that there are many people in the world who have much bigger problems than his. And, he made a promise to all of our ministry partners, many years ago, that he wouldn’t put pressure on you, asking for money for our ministry. So, he was concerned that, if you knew why he couldn’t get the spinal treatments, it may appear to be a “hint” for you to give, to help pay for the treatments.
 
So, out of respect for his wishes, I haven’t written to you about his spinal condition in many months. And, as you can imagine, since he is a minister, we’ve received quite a bit of “criticism” from some who have read my update e-mails, asking why he hasn’t yet received his complete healing. And, that doesn’t help at all.
 
As it became more and more obvious to all of us, that Mark’s pain was going to continue to worsen, we made a difficult decision, to have another procedure done. And, last Thursday, Mark received his first spinal procedure in about a year.
 
Thankfully, his doctor did not require us to pay him at the time of the procedure, but we know that we will need to pay it soon, as well as purchasing the specific medications Mark needs following the procedure, none of which are paid by insurance.
 
Since the procedure, Mark’s pain levels increased significantly, because the spine was starting to shift again, but this time, it was shifting toward correction. It is again starting to straighten. Mark refers to the increased pain as “good pain”, since it is caused by the spinal correction.
 
Please continue to pray with us, believing for Mark’s complete healing. And, in the meantime, believe with us for God’s continued financial provision for our ministry. 
 
Technically, Mark is supposed to stay home for one or two months after each procedure. But, he will have to do some traveling and speaking during that time. I’m so proud of him that, regardless of how he feels, he does what needs to be done, to take care of us.
 
I believe that some of you, who love and respect Mark, and appreciate his ministry, will want to sow a seed to help us at this time. As you know, Mark doesn’t want to ask anyone to give to our ministry. And he isn’t.
 
But as his wife, I am asking those of you who can, to help support him at this time, when he really needs time to heal, and to get strong.
 
Regardless of the financial situation in our nation and around the world, Mark continues to say that our God is Jehovah Jireh, the God of More Than Enough. So, we not only believe God to provide our needs, but even MORE, that He will provide for us to continue to be generous on every occasion. That’s why Mark says that, no matter how difficult things may seem, we will NOT stop sowing seed. If we stop planting today, we’ll stop receiving harvest tomorrow.
 
We thank God for every one of you, who have partnered with us in this ministry. And I hope you know how very much we appreciate all that you do. In the past few months, several of you have planted above your usual level of giving to our ministry. And, each time, it reminds us that God knows where we are, and what we’re facing, and He is our faithful provider.
 
Again, thank you for all your support, not only in finances, but also, even more, for your support in prayer, and as our friends. We love and appreciate every one of you.
 
If you would like to sow a seed, to support our ministry, you may either call our ministry office during office hours, Monday-Friday at (615) 591-5900, or in our secure online store at http://www.markgorman.com/store/default.asp?page=13.
 
Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

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July 22, 2008

Please keep Mark in prayer this week. 

 
Twice a year, he takes a break from his travel and speaking schedule, to give his body a rest from the pain medications for his spine.  This is not required by his doctor, but highly advised and beneficial.  In fact, his doctor has told us that Mark is the only patient he has ever had, who voluntarily goes through this difficult and trying process.  Plus, the doctor is even more impressed that Mark does it not only once, but twice each year!  The doctor told us that Mark has the greatest determination and resolve of any patient he has ever known.
 
Mark does this to cleanse his system, and to ensure that his body doesn’t become dependent on the medications.  Understandably, without these medications, his pain levels are so high, he would not be able to travel and speak.  As you know, we are praying and believing that he will not have to continue to take them.  We have faith that he will receive a total healing, but until then, we must deal with the reality of the tremendous pain associated with his spinal condition.
 
Last Friday, Mark and our team flew to Hartford, Connecticut for a Leadership Seminar. The turnout was tremendous. The teaching flowed so easily that Mark even started sharing leadership principles during the introduction of our staff! The hotel’s general manager was sitting in on that portion of the seminar. She told us later that she was able to put those principles to use that very day. The audience hung on Mark’s every word to the point that they didn’t want it to end. The “Question and Answer” portion went another hour and a half because they just kept wanting more.  
 
Needless to say, this weekend was very taxing on him, but you know Mark, and he wouldn’t have it any other way. When he speaks, he gives 110%. Many people are not even aware of his physical challenges because he presses through the pain, and he doesn’t let it stop him from fulfilling his destiny.
 
After flying home from speaking in Connecticut this weekend, he began the recuperation process on Monday, and is hoping to go without the medications for at least a week or more.  Obviously, we are in close contact with his doctor as he does this, and we regularly monitor him.  I have such great respect for him, that although his doctor does not require him to do this, he still does it, to make himself stronger and healthier in the future.
 
Please understand that, during this time, he is unable to maintain much of his work duties, so his cell phone is forwarded to the office, and he isn’t able to do much e-mail either.
 
The last thing Mark wants is for people to feel sorry for him.  Yes, he is in pain, but remember, he’s lived with this since age 12.  In the past 2 years, his pain levels are much higher, because of the shifting that is taking place in his spinal structure, as a result of the experimental procedures he’s receiving.  Thankfully, we’ve seen a correction of more than 30% in his spinal structure.  But, as the structure changes, his body resists it, which causes more pain.
 
So, please keep him in prayer, but don’t think of him as “weak” or “sickly”.  (That’s his wording.)  He’s a fighter – a warrior, and he will keep fighting the battle until we have total victory!
 
Look for another Leadership Teaching E-mail from Mark in the near future.
 
We are grateful for those of you who have reached out, to sow financial seed, and to support our ministry over the past few years, when Mark has had to undergo spinal procedures and other treatments.  On many occasions, Mark has said that he doesn’t want to ask anyone to give to our ministry, but guess what?  I’m not Mark, I’m his wife, and I am asking those of you who love him, and this ministry, to stand with us at this time, by sowing a generous seed.
 
I am so proud of him.  I’ve seen other people, who didn’t have near this amount of pain, who have “excused” themselves from pressing on to do what they should do.  But Mark has never done that.  And that’s why I am not ashamed to ask you, our friends and partners, to stand with us now.
 
Even when he’s going through these difficult processes, he still makes time to pray for you each day.  Many of your names are on the lists he prays for each day, as Strategic Partners, Foundation Partners and Vision Partners. 
 
If you would like to sow a seed, please feel free to use the following link to our secure online store: http://www.markgorman.com/store/default.asp?page=13 or call and speak to one of our staff members at 615-591-5900.
 
Thank you for your love and prayers.
 
Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

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April 16, 2008

Dear Friends & Partners,

 
Mark will be sending the new teaching from his current series, “The Four Phases of Existence” on Monday, so watch for that email.  If you are new to the list and want to access the first segments of this series, go to http://markgorman.com/teachingemails.htm.
 
I sent you a message a few days ago, giving a brief update on Mark. Since some of you are new to our list, and you may not be familiar with the challenges Mark faces with his spine, I wanted to share a little more with you.
 
First, the GOOD NEWS! In the past two years, Mark has received several spinal procedures, and his spine is shifting and straightening. We can see the proof that it is working! And, although this radical restructuring of his spine is very painful, Mark is willing to deal with higher pain levels now, if it will achieve greater correction and stability in his spine, in the future.
 
We’ve all heard it said, that God has a way of using the storms in our lives to bring unexpected blessings. Well, we are proof of that. Although Hurricane Katrina brought untold destruction and loss to our hometown of New Orleans, and the Gulf Coast, it also served as a catalyst for us, to move to Tennessee. 
 
Just think, if we had not moved here, it’s doubtful that we would have ever met this doctor, who is using experimental procedures, which are causing his spine to gradually move into its proper position – for the first time in his life. And, according to his doctor, Mark is the only person in the world who has ever received these procedures!
 
I know that we could definitely complain about Hurricane Katrina, the disruption of our lives and ministry, the added complications involved in moving, not only our family, but also our ministry, to another state, plus the considerable added expense of Mark’s spinal procedures and medications, and the loss of income for several months each year, also caused by the spinal procedures. But, instead, we choose to rejoice and thank God for this – the FIRST improvement – correction in the structure of Mark’s spine – EVER!
 
Thank You Jesus! Thank You for the storm that came into our lives. Thank You that it did NOT destroy us, but rather, it brought about transition. Without Hurricane Katrina, we probably would not have met this doctor, and Mark’s spinal condition could have continued to worsen with each year, as it had for more than 35 years before Katrina. 
 
I know that if he could, Mark would have chosen to receive his healing at age 12, or 13, or 20, or 30, or 40, or better yet, to have NEVER had the pain of even one herniated or bulging or compressed disc, instead of 9 herniated, 8 bulging and 15 compressed discs.   
 
But, rather than to complain about what could have been, or should have been, or should NOT have been, he chooses to rejoice for what IS happening right now.
 
And, although this has taken much longer than we would have liked, we’ll take it anyway! And, we won’t complain about the financial expense, or the loss of income, because we’re most excited about the GAINS in his health. 
 
Since he is the first person ever to receive these experimental spinal procedures, our health insurance company refuses to pay for them, or the necessary medications. Their company does not recognize it as an “accepted modality”, so they won’t pay for it, even though it’s working!
 
Also, as you know, we’ve had to modify Mark’s travel and speaking schedule to allow for these procedures. We’ve rescheduled many speaking engagements, to free up the necessary time - about 5 months per year, for the past two years. So, you can imagine the combined impact of the loss of 5 months’ income each year, plus the extra medical expenses of more than $40,000 per year, not covered by health insurance. 
 
Mark said that, since the doctors have told us that one of the main causes for elevated pain levels is stress, it’s a good thing that we don’t have any extra financial pressure during this time! Ha! (At least he can still laugh about it!)
 
But, thank God, these procedures ARE WORKING! 
 
And we thank God every day, for you – for each of you who have faithfully prayed with us, and for us. We are thankful for every seed you have planted, for every unexpected blessing you have given, to help sustain our family and ministry during this “Season Of Change”. 
 
We claim your harvest for you – with you, believing God to bless you in ways that we never could – to thank you for standing with us.
 
Last month, when the doctor asked Mark to take 90 days off, we knew immediately that we could not do that. Although it would have been nice for Mark to have that time at home to get stronger and healthier, we knew that we could not do it. So, although we have done what we could, to minimize the number of speaking trips during this 90 day period, he still has a few speaking engagements.
 
Having traveled in ministry, and as a motivational speaker, for most of his life, Mark is well aware of the impact cancellations can have, both on the speaker, and for those who have scheduled him to speak for them. So, Mark told our staff NOT to cancel any speaking engagements for the first few weeks, because he felt that it would not be right, to give such short notice.
 
So, two weeks ago, I traveled with Mark to West Tennessee, near Memphis, where he spoke on a Sunday, then drove home Monday, and left the next day, Tuesday, on a 4 hour drive to Gatlinburg, Tennessee to speak at The Gatlinburg Convention Center, then the drive home the following day, Wednesday, followed by a 6 ½ hour driving trip on the following day, Thursday, to Little Rock, Arkansas, through torrential rain, with tornados approaching from both sides of Little Rock, so he could speak on a Christian TV Network the next morning, Friday, followed by a meeting with one of his Spiritual Sons on the Saturday, and then, the drive home that night, to get in bed at about 2am Saturday morning.
 
So, don’t let anybody tell you that Mark is lazy! He’s not a quitter, and he doesn’t shirk responsibility. Remember, he’s lived with constant pain for most of his life. And he has always pressed through the pain, to stand on a stage and bring a smile to those who needed joy, to give hope to those who were overwhelmed, and to share Christ with a world who needs a Savior. And, until 2005, he didn’t tell you about his pain.  
 
Why? He didn’t want his pain to weaken your faith, to distract you from your destiny, or to trivialize the difficulties with which you were faced. 
 
When God spoke to him in May of 2005, and told him that he should tell others of the battle he’d fought for more than 35 years, he finally sent out the first e-mail, to tell you, our friends and partners, of his physical struggle, so you could pray with us. And, I believe that there are many of you who gained a new resolve, a renewed vision, when you learned of all that he had faced – and overcome. Because, if Mark can do it, so can you.
 
His doctor has commented, on several occasions, that of all the patients he has treated, not only does Mark have the most severe spinal condition, but also, Mark serves as an inspiration to him, and everyone who has worked with him at the clinic. He explained that, most of their spinal patients have one or two damaged spinal discs, and many of them act as if they cannot “lift a finger” because of the pain. But, knowing that Mark has 17 bad discs in his spine, and seeing that he doesn’t let the pain stop him, lifts their spirits, and serves as an inspiration for all of them.
 
I know that there are those who criticize Mark because he has not yet received his physical healing. Some have harshly accused him of not being a true man of God, if he cannot receive his own healing. 
 
Just think, since age 12 his spine has continued to worsen each year. Mark has been praying and believing for his healing, for the past 38 years. That’s a long time – a lot of years, living with pain, but refusing to give up - continuing to pray and believe. 
 
Many others have prayed with us, including Mark’s parents, Rev. Marvin & Virginia Gorman, and many of their friends, including Benny Hinn, Oral Roberts, Kenneth Copeland and many others. And, though he hasn’t yet experienced the “instant” miracle we’ve hoped for, we believe that God can, and does work through people, to bring about healing in many ways. And we believe that God is using this doctor to facilitate Mark’s healing.
 
You know that I don’t usually write so much in one message. But, as I see that Mark is only one third of the way through this 90 day period, I felt that you would want to know what is taking place, so you can stand with us at this time.
 
We know that God has called Mark to do even more than he has already done – to reach even more people with his teaching ministry. Specifically, we know that we are being led by God to produce television programs, which can reach so many more people than Mark could reach in person.
 
And, think of the benefit, for Mark to be able to record these programs here, where we live, in Tennessee, and then have them distributed and seen by people throughout the world. 
 
Recently, God spoke to Mark, through more than one person, that he is to start creating teaching videos, even before we have our own building and TV studio. So, Mark has decided to start out by recording brief teaching videos here, in his office, which can be uploaded onto the internet, so that anyone, anywhere can see them, or even download them, to be played on their iPods or other Mp3 players. Plus, anyone with an internet connection will be able to watch the videos on your computer – on demand. You can just click a link on your computer, and the video will open, and Mark will be right there in your computer, speaking to you – teaching you – encouraging you.
 
The equipment needed to produce these “Video Podcasts” will cost less than $10,000. (Actually, if we wanted, we could just use any camcorder or webcam, and record a video. But if you know Mark at all, you know that he wants to do it with excellence. That doesn’t mean that he has to have the most expensive equipment available anywhere. But it will require some lighting, and video recording equipment which will produce a quality video recording. And, as we grow, and eventually build our own TV / video recording studio, this equipment can be integrated into that facility.)
 
His goal is to start recording these video podcasts as soon as possible. Basically, he sees this as a way for him to still speak to you, even during this “Doctor Requested 90 Day Period” when he is unable to travel. 
 
If God speaks to you to sow a seed, to enable us to get the necessary equipment, please let us know by calling the office, or by sowing your seed in our secure online store at www.markgorman.com
 
I’m sure that others of you will want to reach out to Mark at this time, by sowing a seed of faith into this good soil, of the ministry God has birthed in Mark’s heart.
 
I want to thank each of you in advance, for the seeds that you will sow into the ministry. We pray for God’s abundant harvest to be yours. 
 
Sincerely,
Gina C. Gorman

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March 25, 2008

 

Dear Friends & Partners,

 

This is Gina Gorman, Mark’s wife.  It has been a long time since the last e-mail I sent to update you on how Mark is doing, in regard to his spinal condition.  (If you have not received my previous updates on Mark, you can access them on a special page on our website, at http://www.markgorman.com/markshealthupdates.htm.  Basically, he has been diagnosed with 9 herniated discs, 8 bulging discs and 15 compressed discs, caused by a severe spinal scoliosis, which is apparently hereditary.)

 

First, let me apologize for not doing a better job of keeping you informed on a more consistent basis.  In recent months, several of you, who have seen us at various events where Mark has spoken, have asked why I haven’t been sending more updates on Mark.  Actually, I have purposely refrained from sending constant updates, because I know that many of you are also dealing with significant challenges in your lives as well.  I don’t want anyone to think that we are of the impression that Mark is the only person in the world who has challenges.

 

Also, keep in mind, Mark has had this spinal condition since the age of 12.  He has lived in constant pain for most of his life, every hour of every day, for more than 30 years.  But, no matter how many times we say that, we still encounter people all the time who think that Mark has only had this painful spinal disease since they first learned of it, a couple of years ago. 

 

So, unfortunately, many people have assumed that this has incapacitated Mark, preventing him from traveling and speaking.  They don’t realize that he’s been living with this pain for longer than most of you have known him, and he hasn’t let the pain stop him.  But, we have learned of several organizations who had wanted Mark to return to speak for them, but didn’t ask, because they thought that he was now unable to travel.

 

It is true, that Mark has received spinal procedures in the past 3 years, which have necessitated brief periods of rest (a few weeks) following each procedure.  And the corrective shifting in Mark’s spinal structure, after those procedures, has created significantly higher pain levels, which have sometimes become debilitating.

 

But, I can assure you that Mark has NOT given up, or thrown in the towel.  In fact, the tenacious, persistent spirit that enables him to ignite a flame of passion for achievement in others, has been developed in him, in part, as a result of his battle with constant pain for all these years.  So, in a way, although it has made life much more difficult for him, I believe that the pain has probably also served to challenge him to never give in.

 

Today, Mark had to deal with another challenge in regard to the medications he has to take for this condition.  Thank God, Mark recognized the worsening of the negative side effects, and asked his doctor, last week, to do a blood test, which confirmed what Mark had suspected.  This morning Mark sent an e-mail to his family, and a few of our prayer intercessors, asking them to stand with him in prayer today, and during the next few months.  (Again, he didn’t send it to everyone, not wanting to “make a big deal” of his situation.)

 

This evening, I asked Mark if he would mind if I forward an excerpt from his e-mail to all of you, because I know that there are many of you who would want to know what he is facing, so you can agree with us in prayer.  Also, I truly believe that as you see all that he is overcoming, it will inspire others to press through their own challenges and obstacles as well.

 

Here’s an excerpt from Mark’s e-mail:

 

Dear Friends,

 

Last week I told my doctor of some concerns I had, regarding some of the side effects from the prescription pain medications, which I must take for my spinal condition.

 

At my request, they drew blood, and a few days later, the blood work confirmed what I had suspected. Some of my blood test results were significantly lower than should be, which means that the medications are inhibiting my body's ability to produce important hormones and chemicals, which are necessary for my health.

 

So, I suggested to my doctor that I would like to go through another detoxification process. This is something I've already done 3 other times in the past two years. Each time I did so at my own request and initiative - not ordered by my doctor.

 

I realize that, although my condition necessitates my use of these medicines, they have negative side effects which, if unchecked, could potentially result in long term, even permanent damage to my physical body.

 

So, since midnight, Wednesday night, I have not taken any more of those meds, in order to begin a detox, to cleanse my body of these medications.

 

 

One of the reasons Mark does this is to purge all of the medication from his body.  After doing this, his body then has a “fresh start” when he begins taking them again, so he can take smaller doses, to achieve the same effect.  (When people do not do this type of detoxification, they must keep taking higher and higher doses of medicine, because their body has developed a kind of tolerance for them.)   Mark’s goal is to reduce the amount of medications he takes, to lessen the risk of negative side effects.  And, obviously, his goal is to eventually stop taking any of them at all.

 

Today, I stayed with Mark as he went through this process.  I spoke to his doctor, and nurse by phone several times, as we monitored his blood pressure and other vital signs, to ensure that he was not in any danger.  Although he had several difficult periods throughout the day, he again surprised his doctor, by going far beyond what the doctor had expected, in terms of his ability to deal with the effects of this process.

 

What Mark did not say in his e-mail is that his doctor was very concerned when he saw the results of the blood test from last week.  When he spoke to Mark by phone, he said that we need to take immediate steps to reverse the significant negative effects the medications have had on Mark’s body.  In fact, he actually wanted Mark to cancel all travel for the next 90 days.

 

Mark explained that it would not be possible to do that, but agreed to at least minimize his travel and speaking engagements for the next 3months, as his doctor had requested.  This means that Mark will still travel and speak for key events during this time, so don’t be surprised if you see that he’ll be speaking in your area.  He is NOT canceling his speaking schedule, but we are doing what we can to modify the schedule where possible.

 

As you might imagine, this type of unexpected reduction in Mark’s speaking schedule, has significant negative effects on the ministry’s financial support, which comes mainly from the offerings when Mark speaks.  Also, when Mark speaks for business events, those fees are used to pay for the numerous medical expenses which are not covered by health insurance.  (Most of the spinal procedures are experimental, so health insurance won’t pay for them.  This means that we must pay for them personally.)

 

So, although Mark is still traveling and speaking, and has every intention of continuing to do so, you can also see that he cannot always do as much as he would like.  The good news is that, in the past 2 years, as a result of the experimental spinal procedures, there has been a correction in his spinal structure, of approximately 30%.  And since surgery is not an option, this is the only possible approach that offers Mark any hope of improvement.

 

Over the years, Mark has told our partners that he would not beg them for money, or pressure them to give to our ministry.  And, as his wife, I must tell you that I have gained even more respect for him, seeing him stay true to that commitment that he made to you.  And, also, it has been very gratifying to see so many of you faithfully support the ministry, without us asking you to do so.

 

But as his wife, I feel that I would be wrong if I did not at least tell you of these challenges which restrict his ability (at present) to do what is necessary to maintain the ministry’s financial support.

 

And, one of the reasons I haven’t written to you more about Mark’s situation in recent months, is because some people have been critical, when I have mentioned our financial needs to you, in light of Mark’s spinal procedures, etc.  They have said that I am asking for money, when Mark has said that we will not do that.

 

And my reply is, “Mark promised not to ask.  I didn’t!”

 

Also, you may have noticed that we’ve made a point of sending more teaching e-mails from Mark, with very little mention of his spinal condition. 

 

But truly, it has been hurtful for both of us, to see that there are those who have become critical, even though I have made very little mention of the ministry’s financial situation.  And, as a result of reading those criticisms, Mark and I both have been reluctant to even continue to send the updates, out of concern that some may actually believe that he was not living up to his promise, to not pressure you for money.

 

But when I learned that his doctor had asked us to minimize his travel for the next 90 days, I knew that I needed to at least let you know.  Keep in mind, he will still fulfill several speaking engagements during that time, and those of you in those areas will be notified of the events, in advance, by e-mail.  But his travel schedule will not be as full as usual.  And, as a result of that, the ministry’s financial support will be reduced as well.

 

So, I say this, only to those of you who want to know: “I am asking you to help us at this time.  Mark is NOT.  But I am.”

 

And if you are offended by that, please accept my apologies.  But as a wife who truly loves and respects her husband, I believe that I’m doing the right thing.

 

There are several ways you can partner with our ministry.  Rather than for me to try to describe them, I’ll just insert Mark’s description of each from his most recent teaching e-mail:

 

Ministry Partners receive a new message from Mark each month on the CD Of The Month or Mp3 Of The Month, along with a letter from me, updating you on our family and our ministry. Partners are those who sow a seed of $20/month or more.

Strategic Partners, sow $1,000/year, or $85/month. Your names, and the names of your family, are on the list Mark prays for each day, for household salvation, healing & health, and financial abundance. They also receive this year’s Strategic Partner Bible, which is the John Maxwell Leadership Bible. Our MMI Logo is embossed in gold on the front cover, along with the words, “2008 Strategic Partner, Mark Ministries, Inc.”. (Those who sow $85/month will receive one Bible, and those who sow the entire $1,000 now, will receive two of the Strategic Partner Bibles for this year. Mark signs all of the Bibles before they are shipped.)

Vision Partners” are those who sow $5,000 or more per year, either monthly or as a one-time seed. Vision Partners not only receive CD of The Month, as do all other Partners, and also are listed on the same Daily Prayer List Mark prays for, but also, they receive both the Strategic Partner Bibles AND our Ultimate 80gb Video iPod.

If you would like to sow a seed of support, please use the following link to an information page on our website:
http://www.markgorman.com/store/default.asp?page=13

 

We have a Secure Online Store at www.markgorman.com, where you can join online, or you can call our staff at 1-615-591-5900.

 

Thank you, in advance, for your prayerful support at this time.  Also, please understand if Mark is not as easy to reach by phone or e-mail in the next few weeks, during this process.  Be assured of our love and prayers for you.

 

Sincerely,

Gina Gorman

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January 15, 2008

Dear Friends and Partners,

 
Please remember Mark in your prayers today. He is at the doctor’s office as we speak receiving another spinal procedure.  This is the procedure which paralyzes the muscles and it has proven to help Mark’s spine straighten more than any other procedure.
 
A while back, the doctor told us that the spinal procedures from last year were “wearing off”, and the muscles which they had paralyzed last year, were “waking up”. Basically, those muscles have been trying to pull his spine back into the severe scoliosis curve which Mark had lived with for the last 37 years. Because of this, he has had increased pain for the last several months.  The doctor said the muscles need to be paralyzed again, so we do not lose the improvement that we have seen in the straightening of his spine.
 
In spite of the pain, Mark has been maintaining his speaking schedule. God is opening more doors and we are excited for what lies ahead.  
 
The procedure will take effect the first part of next week and in the past his pain has increased as the spine starts to shift. We believe for NO PAIN.
 
Thank you for all of you who have continued to support the ministry in addition to sowing seeds for the new ministry facilities.  You are a blessing!
 
Blessings,
Deanna Gorman
Executive Assistant to Mark and Gina Gorman

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October 30, 2007

 

The spinal procedure that Mark had yesterday did not go well at all. No one had told us that if an appointment was after 2:00 pm, you can not be sedated. So, Mark was completely awake throughout the procedure.
 
They told Mark that they would give him injections to numb the area, so he wouldn't feel any pain from the burning of the nerves in his neck. But, they were wrong!
 
The pain was really bad. And, to top it off, Mark had to remain completely motionless. Otherwise, with the slightest movement, reacting to the pain, he risked the possibility of the needle possibly causing damage to his spinal cord, brain stem, etc.
 
Mark told them several times that he didn't want to do it without anesthesia, but they either ignored him or were not paying attention to what he was saying.
 
After the procedure, Mark was able to speak with his doctor and others in charge of the facility, and they were apologetic, but he was already in excruciating pain.
 
The doctors instructed for him to do nothing for the next 24 hours -bed rest, nothing else. With the kind of pain he is experiencing, it’s easy for him to follow these instructions.
 
Mark has done as instructed and we are praying that not only will he recover from the traumatic episode, but that the procedure will be effective in spite of the difficulty. 
 
Thank you for your prayers, and we ask that you continue.  Once the procedure takes effect, we pray it will bring the expected relief.

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October 29, 2007

 

Dear Prayer Partners,

This afternoon, Mark is having a radio frequency ablation procedure, which uses radio waves to kill nerves which are sending constant, severe pain signals to the brain.  This is a very delicate procedure because of the close proximity to the spinal cord and brain stem in the upper neck area.

Please pray with us that everything will go well and that God would direct the doctors so that Mark will be able to function at a higher level for his speaking schedule.

Blessings,

Deanna Gorman - Executive Assistant to Mark and Gina Gorman
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August 30, 2007

 

Hi, it’s Gina Gorman again. I wanted to give you another update on Mark. On Thursday, August 23rd, Mark was scheduled to fly with his assistant,  Dwayne, to New York City. He was in such severe pain, that we booked him on a later flight that same afternoon, so he would have a little more time to give his body time to heal. Dwayne flew out on his scheduled flights, and he took Mark’s carry-on case with him. 
 
Mark was in awful pain, but he was determined to make the trip. He kept telling me, “I am not going to miss this trip! No matter how I feel, I am going to make this trip!” 
 
I had mixed emotions when I saw what he was going through. On the one hand, I was so proud of him for refusing to allow the pain keep him from fulfilling his commitments, but yet it broke my heart to see him in such pain, and yet to be so determined to not give up.
 
I packed his clothes since he was unable to do so. Mark literally pulled himself out of bed to get dressed for the flight. I drove him to the airport for his flight. We were right on schedule, until we hit an unexpected traffic jam on one of the interstates. We were delayed by 40 minutes just trying get through the accident. 
 
We ended up getting to the airport with just enough time for Mark to still make the flight. However, when he checked in his bags with the skycap, Mark was informed that he had been labeled as “high risk” due to our changing his flight at such a short notice, and him flying out a few hours later on that same day. 
 
Mark was in so much pain, that he asked the skycap get him a wheelchair. At the security screening area, Mark was made to wait 20 minutes before even being scanned and searched. The skycap later told Mark that it was obvious that the man intentionally wanted to make Mark miss his flight, since there was no reason to make Mark wait that long, when so many screeners were available. Once he finally got through the entire checkpoint, which was quite an involved search, the plane had just left a few minutes prior. He missed his flight, but his checked baggage made the flight. If he was such a security threat, it seems that they would have made sure to remove his luggage from the plane.
 
He had to reschedule for an early morning flight on Friday. You can imagine how frustrating this was. He was still determined he would not miss the trip. 
 
Later that night, he tried doing some exercises to ease the pain and strengthen his spine. At first, he seemed to be feeling okay. However, after about 5 minutes he could barely walk. Some of his ribs were pulling out of place. I had to wake our son Kenneth, so he could help me. We had to literally lift Mark into the bed and put ice packs on him. He was in excruciating pain. At this point, I had no idea how he could fly out the next morning. 
 
In the midst of this, he kept telling me, “I am not going to miss this weekend!” He looked me straight in the eyes and said, “It is very important that you understand why I am saying this. I want to you to know that I am giving all I’ve got, to refuse to let this pain win!” I was so broken-hearted to see him in this condition, but yet I was so proud to see how he was fighting all odds to be a hero – to be my hero!
 
He boarded the flight to New York early Friday morning. Although he was in severe pain, he got on that plane a winner!
 
Several people have called our office to ask about Mark’s condition. They all seem to be shocked that Mark made the trip this past weekend. We tell them what Mark said, “There was no way I was going to miss this weekend!”
 
Well, it was an awesome weekend. Mark was scheduled to speak 6 times throughout the weekend, and Monday night as well. The pastor was thrilled with the messages that Mark shared with his people. 
 
He kept telling Mark, “This is exactly what our church needed to hear.” The pastor wants Mark to return next year, and he specifically wants Mark to teach from his book “God’s Plan For Prosperity”. 
 
Mark flew home Tuesday night. He was in such severe pain with his spine, that I had to help him get into his pajamas at home. He has had reactions to some of the medications which caused severe nausea, and several mouth ulcers, which make it painful for him to eat anything solid. I have been giving him cream of wheat, pudding, ice cream, and other soft foods. 
 
Last week, the doctor told us that the spinal procedures from last year were “wearing off”, and the muscles which they had paralyzed last year, were “waking up”. Basically, those muscles have been trying to pull his spine back into the severe scoliosis curve which Mark had lived with for the last 37 years. This is why he is having such severe pain, and why his ribs keep going out of place so easily. The doctor said the muscles need to be paralyzed again, so we do not lose the improvement that we have seen in the straightening of his spine. We were going to wait until the end of the year to do this procedure, but the doctor said it can’t wait; it must be done soon, so we do not “lose ground”.
 
Because these treatments are still considered experimental, health insurance refuses to pay for them. They are so costly, we have decided to use only half of the amount of the medication that they have used in the past. The doctor wants to do these procedures more frequently, using less of the paralyzing agent each time. We are praying that this will be more effective in the long run, and hopefully it won’t be quite as debilitating as in the past.
 
It is no coincidence that we are under so much pressure, right after we announce our vision to move forward with the ministry, and to purchase an office building so the ministry can expand into television and reach more people than ever before. 
 
We have been facing a lot of “giants” lately. At the same time that Mark’s vision is expanding, and we are ready to start moving forward, we see the enemy doing everything possible to discourage us, and stifle our dream. 
 
Mark was not even able to write his leadership e-mail last week because of the pain. This is the first one he has missed in a long time. It is obvious that we are under attack by the enemy. We need your prayers and support now more than ever. Let’s prove to the enemy that we are not going to retreat! 
 
In fact, last week we were faced with another situation which seemed a bit overwhelming. We received a telephone call from the pastor of a church where Mark was scheduled to speak 3 weeks from now. The pastor had forgotten to make a note on his calendar, for the dates he had scheduled for Mark to speak. In spite of the fact that it had been scheduled since January, and a confirmation packet had been sent by our office, to their church, by certified mail in April, they cancelled, saying “it just won’t work for them”. I’m sure you can imagine the added pressure that this has put on Mark. 
 
We know that God has something great in store for us, or the enemy wouldn’t be fighting us so strongly. We are not going to give up on the vision that God has given us. As Mark says, “Quitting is for sissies.” He also teases me about “Mama married a man”, and believe me, I did! He has more inner strength and wisdom, than anyone I know. Sometimes I sit in amazement as he writes his Leadership e-mails.
 
Don’t think he is a weakling because of the pain he is facing. It gets the best of him every now and them, but look out when he’s feeling good. I always say Mark has 2 speeds – full force blazing a trail, or in severe pain. It’s one or the other. One minute we may have to help him because of the pain, but look out, because in just a short time we may be trying to catch up to him. I know this sounds funny, but that’s how it is. If he physically could, he would be full force, full throttle all the time. At those times, he makes us all tired just trying to keep up with him.  
 
Mark often says, “There are a lot of people who have worse problems than me – worse pain.”
 
But my question is, “How many people in worse pain are doing half of what he does?”
 
Please continue to keep Mark in your prayers as he keeps fighting this battle. He needs to know that we are standing with him in this fight against the pain! We are not quitters, and we will win!

 

Sincerely,
Gina

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August 22, 2007

Dear Friends and Partners,
 
This is Gina Gorman.  I am writing to you on Mark’s behalf.  Today is our 27th Wedding Anniversary.  I am so sorry to have to tell you that today has ended up being a painful one for Mark – more painful than usual.
 
Tomorrow, Thursday, August 23rd, Mark is scheduled to fly, with his support staff, to New York City.  This weekend he will be speaking at a church in Upstate New York. 
 
For the past several weeks, he has been having higher-than-usual pain levels in his lumbar/sacral spine, radiating down into the leg as well. Because of this, we had made arrangements for him to receive a specialized procedure for his lumbar spine, this afternoon.  This procedure involves him being strapped into a very large machine which has the ability to take him from vertical to horizontal position, and then, to create specific traction which is monitored by a computer, regulating the exact amount of pressure/tension on each of his discs and support muscles.  It was our hope that this specialized procedure would help him to be able to travel tomorrow.
 
A few minutes ago, as Mark was getting dressed to go to the doctor, he suddenly had extreme pain in his left shoulder, radiating down to the middle of his back, including several ribs on the left side.  The pain was so severe, that he could barely get to the phone to call the office and ask us to have someone rush to his aid. I had to help him get dressed for bed, and then place the pain patches on his shoulder before he lay down, and placed his head in the traction machine here at home.
 
At present, he is lying in bed with several pain patches on his back, an ice pack on his thoracic area and his head in a cervical traction device which he must have with him at all times, for situations like this.
 
Deanna called the doctors office to inform them that Mark will not be able to receive the lumbar/sacral spine procedure today.  Isn’t it ironic, that he can’t receive a spine procedure because other parts of his spine has acted up, making it impossible to for him to travel from our home to the doctor’s office at this point?
 
To give you a bit of a broader view, this past weekend, Mark and I were scheduled to fly to Sacramento, CA, where Mark would speak at the church of our dear friends, Pastors Dave and Cheryl Bryan. We were originally scheduled to fly in on the Wednesday, so we could have a couple of days off, for rest and fellowship with Dave and Cheryl.  They have an amazing gift of hospitality.  They wanted to get us away from the phones and other pressures of life for a few days with them at Lake Tahoe. 
 
On Tuesday of last week, Mark’s pain levels were extremely high – so high that it became obvious that he was in no condition to fly the following day.  Our office contacted the Bryans, and informed them that we would not be traveling until Friday, so Mark could still speak for them on the Saturday and Sunday, as scheduled. (By the way, Mark and I both absolutely love their church.  It is, with out a doubt, one of our favorite churches in all the world.  Dave and Cheryl are some of the greatest leaders, and most loyal friends we have ever known.)
 
Once we had determined that Mark would be unable to travel to California until Friday, Deanna contacted Mark’s Spine Specialist, to ask if they could work Mark in on Thursday for a procedure to help alleviate some of the more severe pain, enabling him to travel without these extra high pain levels. (As you know, Mark has lived with constant pain, 24 hours a day, since age 12.  So, he has learned over the years, how to deal with pain on a regular basis.  But, even for someone like him, extreme pain can hinder him from being able to function as he needs.)
 
Thursday afternoon, Mark went to see the Spine Specialist and they performed a spinal procedure, which involved the use of medications to alleviate pain, and to reduce inflammation in the worst pain-areas.  Basically, they had to insert a hypodermic needle into the most painful areas on his low back, mid back, shoulders, neck, and the base of the skull.  They injected the maximum allowed dosage, knowing that Mark’s upcoming travel schedule is so demanding, he needed as much help as possible to enable him to travel. (FYI, Mark is scheduled to travel and speak every week from now until the middle of December.  This is not just because he wants to do that, but since the spinal procedures last year forced him to postpone so many speaking engagements, now, he has to stay busy.  He just refuses to give up!) 
 
On Friday morning, following the procedures, Mark awoke to find that his body had a severe reaction to some of the medicines which had been injected into his back, spine, neck, and the base of his skull.  His face was very swollen, and inflamed. In fact, the swelling of the face and neck just began to decrease three days later this Monday.
 
It was with a sigh of frustration and desperation that Mark told me Friday morning that he was in no condition to travel.  I agreed totally.  The outward, physical manifestation of the swelling and redness, was not nearly as bad as the way he felt, throughout his body, for many days, until some of the medicines began to leave his body. 
 
So, with a heavy heart, we informed Pastor Dave’s office that, because of this unexpected reaction to the previous day’s spinal procedure, and based on advice given to us by Mark’s doctor, Mark would not be able to travel.
 
As we expected, the Bryans were extremely kind, and understanding.  But, Mark was extremely frustrated that once again, the spinal pain, and the associated procedures, had once again, prevented him from fulfilling his commitment to speak.  Mark told me that day, that he is determined to make every trip for the rest of this year.
 
Now, today, as he was preparing to receive a spinal procedure to help him make the trip tomorrow, another unexpected “snag” has created a challenge for him. 
 
The reason I am writing to you is not to tell you that Mark will not be traveling this weekend.  He told me, just a few minutes ago, that even if they have to drag him to the plane and drag him onto stage, he is not going to miss another weekend.  I am asking you to join with me in praying for Mark’s strength and complete healing from all pain, and from everything which causes the pain.
 
Last week, Mark’s Specialist told us that one of the causes of the increased pain in the last couple of months is that some of the previous procedures have worn off.  You may recall that, last year, Mark received more than one experimental procedure which involves paralyzing specific muscles in his spine to force other muscles to work properly.  Unfortunately, our health insurance company does not pay for those procedures nor do they pay for the majority of Mark’s medications.  Therefore, in consideration of the cost, and of the “forced time off” associated with another one of these procedures, Mark decided to wait until the end of this year to receive the next procedure. 
 
Unfortunately, it appears that the delay in receiving that procedure has apparently been the cause of some of these recent problems. 
 
Sincerely,
Gina

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August 2, 2007

Dear Friends and Partners,

It’s been a long time since I have sent out an update on Mark’s health. Please forgive my delay.

Recently, Mark battled a new enemy with his health. He developed severe hypertension, as a result of some of the medications that had been prescribed to him. We had a couple of months where we had to monitor his blood pressure all throughout each day. He saw a hypertension specialist, and thankfully, his blood pressure is back to normal.

Mark’s description of the way you feel from high blood pressure is, “Yuck!” He said it just feels awful – especially when combined with all the pain and other physical challenges he was already facing.

We did receive some good news from Mark’s doctor at The Spine Clinic. On his last visit, the doctor was surprised, stating that the “double S” lateral curve (side to side) is almost completely straightened! Isn’t it amazing that, since May of 2006, a little more than a year since his first “experimental spinal procedure”, nearly all of the lateral curves are gone! But, as great as that sounds, you need to know that we’re still faced with the most difficult part of the battle.

Mark’s doctor explained that another aspect of the spinal disease Mark has had since age 12 is the significant rotation of the spine. The spinal rotation is still causing his ribcage to be twisted, and is the source of his most severe pain in the neck, mid back and lumbar-sacral spine. The doctor explained to us that there are no muscles in the thoracic area which could rotate the spine, so there is no way he can do any “non-invasive” spinal procedures to help straighten out the rotation.

Mark looked his doctor straight in the eyes and said, “That is where God has to work.” The doctor said, “Mr. Gorman you are correct!” We believe for a complete healing of Mark’s spine.

Mark’s pain has intensified as the muscles continue to shift bones in his spinal structure into place. So, basically, the pain he’s having now, and for the past 14-15 months, has been worse than before, because now, his body is “screaming” at him – resisting the structural changes which are taking place. Sometimes the pain is debilitating for Mark. He is determined to keep pressing on. He is not a quitter.

He refuses to accept the defeatist advice he’s received from so many doctors, who have basically said to give up. In fact, nearly every time he goes to the spine specialist, the doctors say, “You should be in a wheelchair – or a hospital bed – not flying all over the world, speaking on stages to crowds of people.”

Over the past few years, Mark has gone to some of the finest medical institutions in the country, including Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, Vanderbilt in Nashville, and others. Many doctors have said that, in their “expert opinion”, he needs to “take it easy”, and prepare himself as life goes on, and as he gets older – more pain, less mobility – eventual defeat. Mark has chosen to be a hero instead of a victim! He is my hero!

Recently, Mark has started walking with our daughter Sharah and me in our neighborhood. For some time, the doctor has encouraged him to do this, but it was a “catch 22”, that the pain prevented him from walking, and the walking would eventually strengthen his body to combat the pain. He finds that the walking is helping to strengthen some of the support muscles in his spine. In fact, he wears weights around his waist when he walks, weighing down on his pelvis, to force the spinal and abdominal muscles to work even harder, so the spine can be stronger afterward.

Keep in mind, we lived in New Orleans for most of our lives, where there are NO hills. Now, we live in Tennessee, so a neighborhood walk takes on a whole new meaning, considering some of the hills in our area! We love having Mark walk with us on our walks. We always take our dogs along, so it’s a great outing, especially with Sharah’s little Yorkie (Yorkshire Terrier), Coco, who weighs only 8 pounds. She knows which houses have dogs, and even before we get to their house, she starts barking loudly, announcing that we are on our way. It’s as if she’s saying, “Prepare yourselves for this 8 pound force of terror!” Now, do you understand why she has adopted Mark as her master? Do you see any similarity in their personalities?

Thank you to each one who has stood with us at this time. Mark’s vision for the future is so HUGE, it’s amazing! His faith is high, and he is so excited about God’s plan for us, that he talks about it every day.

Recently, Mark has been asked by several companies to do teachings by phone on teleconferences. In a typical teleconference, people from all over the world can log in and listen to Mark’s teaching. We have had people on those calls from Australia, England, and Europe, as well as those from all across the United States and Canada. I am thrilled that this new opportunity has opened up for Mark. It is an answer for prayer for him to be able to be at home and teach and impact people from all around the world.

Several people have asked if Mark would do “one on one” personal coaching by phone. As you might imagine, there is such a demand on Mark’s time, that we had to ask for outside counsel as to how to “price” Mark’s one-on-one personal success coaching. Although the personal coaching fees are quite high, we have been amazed at the number of people who want Mark to coach them personally in this way.

With all of the challenges that Mark has been facing with his spinal condition, this is a great new avenue for us.

In mid July, Mark spoke at MTSU, Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, TN, which happens to be the largest public university in this state. They wanted Mark to share his message on Excellence – Getting A Message To Garcia. Mark did an awesome job, I was so proud of him. The response was overwhelming. One of the people there wants Mark to be the keynote opening speaker for an upcoming convention, where over 50,000 people will be in attendance. We thank God for opening up another new door of opportunity.

Some of Mark’s enthusiasm has been coming through in his weekly motivational teaching e-mails as well. It was through these e-mails that the Leadership Seminars were birthed, recently. The feedback from these weekly teaching e-mails has been awesome.

As his wife, I can actually see an “awakening” in Mark. He is sharper than he’s ever been! The wisdom that flows through him is amazing. He sits at the computer and his hands just fly across the keyboard, as the teachings seem to just flow out of him as he types. He’s not getting this stuff from books, it just pours out of him, through his years of leadership.

Obviously, his many years of study, reading many books, and learning in other ways, have all served to prepare him to teach these principles now. I’m just saying that he’s not sitting here, copying someone else’s material, word for word. Since I’m part Cajun, I would liken it to a gumbo – where all of the ingredients combine, marinating into an end product which does not taste like any single ingredient, but instead, results in a flavor which reflects a bit of everything that has gone “into the pot”, and now it is ready to be enjoyed.

It is hard to describe, but I can see that he is getting physically stronger as he writes these teachings. It is almost as if his physical strength is returning, as this wisdom pours through him, through the keyboard, into the computer, and eventually to you, in these weekly teaching e-mails. They seem to empower him. (I know that this sounds really silly, but I am seeing it happen in Mark.)

This past weekend we held our first Leadership Seminar here in our new hometown of Nashville. It was a great success. There were people from 8 states in attendance, some of whom had driven as much as 12 hours one way, just to attend, and hear Mark’s teaching in that four-hour seminar. People came from Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, and others, as well as our new home state of Tennessee.

Some companies purchased blocks of tickets for their employees. The president of one company brought 25 of his employees to the seminar. I was the emcee for the event. As I looked across the audience, I was surprised by the number of new faces, who I had never seen before.

Some of the people who heard Mark at MTSU were also in attendance. It was wonderful to see that, although this was only our first Leadership Seminar, already we could sense that God was using this as a means of drawing people from many different businesses and walks of life, who all came for one reason – to learn how to be a better leader in their “world”.

Mark started out the seminar by speaking on how to lead with vision, teaching that, “When you know where you’re going, all decisions become easy.” (As you know, it’s practically impossible to fully describe all that he taught. Basically, it was some of his greatest teaching EVER!) He explained that leaders have a choice, to lead leaders, or to lead followers. Although these two may seem to be very similar, the results are very different.

Mark began the second session that day by sharing one of the defining moments in his own life, when at an early age, he made the choice to be a leader. Although he was only 12 years old at the time, the significance of this “life choice”, which would affect his entire future, made an indelible impression on his young mind – creating a memory which is as clear today as it was then. As he described the experience which led to that decision, all of us relived that moment with him – when a 12-year-old boy made a decision – a choice which would shape his future – which continues to impact his life and choices, still today.

The telling of that experience, further emphasized Mark’s strong belief that, “There is NO such thing as a born leader. Leadership is a choice, which anyone can make, if they are willing to BECOME – to CHANGE – to be so committed to their dream that they will listen, learn and grow, until they eventually BECOME a LEADER.”

He motivated us to achieve our own personal success. We were all challenged to make a difference in this world, by using our success to help us find our significance. He explained that significance is what leaves a legacy for others to follow, even after we are no longer here.

We have received many wonderful testimonials from those who attended that day. They said it was a life changing event. Many of them told us that they are already looking forward to our next Nashville leadership on December 15, 2007. Some, who drove many miles, from other states, have told us that they not only plan to attend in December, but they will have many others with them. We believe that the December Nashville Leadership Seminar will be even better!


Sincerely,
Gina Gorman
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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

 

Dear Friends and Partners,

Yesterday Mark had his first ever radio frequency ablation procedure, which uses radio waves to kill nerves which are sending constant, severe pain signals to the brain. He seems to have done well. He said that it was the most painful procedure he has ever had, because they had to insert 4 large needles through the side of his neck, through all of the muscle tissue, directly into the nerves adjacent to the cervical spine. This was all done while using a “live x-ray” which allows the doctor to ensure that the needles do not go into the wrong area, being so close to the spinal cord and the base of the brain.

After the procedure they cautioned Mark several times, saying that, although they had killed the nerves near the spine, the invasive nature of this procedure causes a bruising and tearing of the muscle tissue along the right side of his neck. They said that he should be prepared for a lot of pain in that area for the next few days, until the muscle tissue heals.

Mark & I were supposed to fly out today to Reno, Nevada, but he was still in too much pain from the procedure, so we decided to wait and travel tomorrow to be sure there wouldn’t be any further complications.

Please be in prayer for Mark. He will be speaking for a new company, NET Marketing Alliance, which is the largest financial seminar company in the United States. They do over 1500 events a year using celebrity speakers such as: Donald Trump, Fergie – The Duchess of York, Terry Bradshaw, Tony Robbins, Zig Ziglar, Naomi Judd, Nelson Mandela, Angelina Jolie, etc.

One of the founders of the company heard Mark’s “Getting A Message To Garcia” and has been pursuing him since last October.

This company wants to use Mark as the “glue” that keeps the audience at the seminars all day. They want him to be the first speaker of the day, as well as speaking just before the last speaker. They want Mark to blend his stand up comedy with his motivational speaking.

Mark flew to Utah a few weeks ago to speak to the NET Marketing Alliance staff at their headquarters in Salt Lake City, UT. Mark made it clear to them that the Bible content in his presentations is “non-negotiable”, they said that he has full liberty to use Bible references in all of their events. As you know, this is an incredible opportunity.

Mark will speak in Reno, NV on Thursday, March 1st and then at the end of month on March 27th in Long Island, NY. These are the first two public events Mark is doing for them. They want to see how well he does at “keeping the audience in their seats” until the end of the day. This obviously puts a lot of pressure on him, but as you know, Mark does his best under pressure.

They want Mark to eventually do at least 5 events a month. When he was in Utah, they also asked if he would write curriculums for their “Personal Success Coaches”, to teach them how to work one-on-one with their “high-end” clients, helping them to achieve success and create wealth. This would obviously entail a lot of research and writing on Mark’s part, so this is a future venture. The great thing is that they said that they consider him to be too valuable to work with individual clients. Instead, they want him to coach their coaches.

Please keep us in your prayers, particularly Mark. Not only does he have the pressure on him for speaking at this event, but also he is dealing with high pain levels at this time.

Love,

Gina

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Monday, December 11, 2006

 

Dear Friends and Partners,

Thank you for praying for Mark during this time, as he undergoes another round of spinal procedures. In addition to updating you on Mark’s condition, I thought you might like to know what’s been happening around our home these days.

This past week the weather here in Tennessee has been below freezing at night, so Mark hasn’t been outdoors much. As you probably know, cold weather seems to intensify aches and pains.

Yesterday Mark asked me to cook one of his favorite things to eat at this time of year, when it’s cold outside. He loves vegetable beef soup, so I made a huge pot of it, enough for him to enjoy it as much as he likes while he is at home all thi s month. He always has to have a bottle of Louisiana Hot Sauce nearby when he’s having his soup. Ha!

A couple of nights ago we were looking for Sharah’s little Yorkshire Terrier, Coco. When we spotted her, we learned that she had found a new place to take a nap. She was curled up under the Christmas tree. It was so cute!

Although Coco belongs to our daughter, Sharah, she has seemed to adopt Mark as her “play toy”. We have a bell on her collar, so we can find her, since she’s so small, and so energetic, always running around the house, getting into places where she shouldn’t be. Lately, we’ve found that if we want to know where Mark is, all we do is listen for Coco’s bell, because she follows him everywhere. She even sleeps in the bed between us. One of her favorite places is to climb up on Mark’s pillow, next to his head. She thinks that she owns him!

This month, following his latest procedure, Mark is unable to play “fetch” with her very much, because of the pain. She doesn’t understand why he’s not playing with her, so she sometimes stands a few feet away, and starts to paw at the floor like a bull, barking at him, as if to say, “Hey, Daddy, why aren’t you playing with me?” She doesn’t understand his painful condition. But she is certainly a comfort when he is lying in bed on the ice packs and heat packs, to have her cuddled up next to him. Mark says that she is good medicine.

Thank you for your prayers for Mark this month, as he undergoes this “second round” of spinal procedures. Mark’s pain levels seem to be increasing day by day. Although the pain is intense, it is a welcomed pain. This is a symptom of the shifting of his spinal structure, and we pray that this process will give him the intended end result - the correcting of his spine.

The paralysis (caused by the procedure) is starting to set in, which is forcing other dormant muscles to “do their job” in supporting the spine. At this point, he is still able to hold his head up, but, if his muscles react in the same way they did following his first procedure in May, he could be bed-ridden for a few weeks.

As we have mentioned before, in his 37 year battle with constant pain, this is the only procedure he has ever received which has produced substantial corrections in his spine. Because it is considered “experimental”, this spinal procedure is not covered by insurance. In fact, Mark’s doctor has told him that, of the more than 2,000 patients he has treated, Mark’s spine condition is, by far, the worst case he has ever seen.

The doctor said that Mark will be his best example of the effectiveness of these new, cutting edge procedures. He said that by Mark being a “case study”, his results will make it possible for many others to receive these procedures in the future, and hopefully, their costs may be covered by health insurance at that time.

We want to say a special “Thank You” to those who have reached out to us with financial support this month. It is because of you that we were able to take this step of faith, for Mark to clear an entire month, with no speaking or travel, to receive these much-needed procedures.

We are believing in faith that Mark will be stronger than ever. In fact, our staff has been accepting several more speaking engagements for Mark for next year. Mark has told all of us that he expects to be “back in the saddle” going full speed in January. So his faith is high, in spite of how he feels right now.

We have been thrilled at the number of people who are taking advantage of the opportunity to get the brand new “Mark Gorman Video iPod Collections” this month. It is so amazing to think that you can have Mark’s complete library of his teaching, motivational speaking, singing and humor, all in the palm of your hand, with this wonderful technology!

This month we did something we have never done before. We gave everyone the opportunity to receive a free download of our “Merry Christmas 2006” CD Of The Month audio. If you haven’t heard it yet, be sure to use the link below, to get your free download.

Many of you have been asking for updates on Mark’s condition. It is such a blessing to have friends like you who care so much about us, and who are standing with us in prayer, and in faith.

God Bless You,
Gina Gorman
 
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Friday, September 08, 2006

Dear Friends & Partners,

This is Gina. Our son, Kenneth, came to us today and asked if he could write an update message to send to you. As you read his message, below, keep in mind that Kenneth is our genius. He is studying Pre-Med, so please keep that in mind as you read this.

If you think that Kenneth started using this type of descriptions because of his university studies, think again! Mark has always joked that if you ask Kenneth what time it is, he will tell you how a watch works. You'll see what I mean.

Sincerely,

Gina


Dear Friends & Partners,

This email is from Kenneth, Mark’s son. It’s been a while since you’ve received an update on how Dad is doing, and I wanted to let you know of his progress and current condition.

As many of you will remember, Dad underwent a procedure in May, where that he had certain muscles in his back and neck temporarily paralyzed (temporarily meaning 3-4 months) through injections, with the proposed outcome that paralyzing certain muscles would force other muscles to develop and share the workload of balancing his back. Basically, for all of his life, the muscles in Dad’s back have not functioned the way they do in yours or mine. In normal muscular and skeletal systems, the duties of support and motility of the spine are divided between matching sets of muscles on either side of the spine. As a result, most human backs have a high degree of symmetry, with respect to the spine, basically meaning that the left side of your back is an exact, but opposite, mirror image of the right side of your back, both visibly and functionally. Well, in Dad’s back, there has never be en much symmetry. Since his spine was so severely curved, his muscles responded in such a way that the muscles on one side of the back were significantly more developed than muscles on the opposite side. Now, to be clear, it was not the case that the right side of the back was hulking muscle and the left side was in atrophy, but rather that where his spine bent left (at the top and very bottom), the muscles on the left were stronger, and where his spine bent to the right (the middle), the muscles on the right were stronger. The goal, therefore, of the treatment was to force the underdeveloped muscles to “catch up” and behave normally, by disabling the dominant, overdeveloped muscles.

Immediately following the procedure in May, however, Dad began to have great difficulty functioning normally. Namely, once the paralysis took effect, Dad was unable to support the weight of his own head for more than 20-30 minutes at a time. He was being forced to support his head wit h muscles that had been effectively unused for decades. Forcing new muscles to work and develop in this way is like going to physical therapy 24 hours a day. The way Dad’s doctor described it, is that when most muscles get fatigued, they do so in a gradual process. These muscles, however, are effectively doing the job of supporting the weight of a bowling ball on the tip of a finger. He explained that these muscles fatigue quickly, and when they do, they go into a severe spasm, which is extremely painful. At that point in time, I must admit, I had more concern than hope. I had a great deal of concern over the events of the then-upcoming summer, and it was hard to focus on the fact that these treatments were supposed to be helping him. It was very frightening to think about the fact that Dad may not have been able to hold his head up for more than minutes at a time, and that it might have stayed that way for up to 4 months.

Thankfully, Dad began his recovery quickly, and within 5-6 weeks, he was able to hold his head up long enough to get through a service or deliver a presentation. Even now, he is still not back up to full speed, but he’s getting there.

Now, I know I took a few paragraphs covering stuff that many of you already know about, but I needed to take a minute and explain the situation so that anyone new to the group would be caught up. Now that we’re all on the same page, let’s get on to the good news.

This past Saturday evening, Dad was speaking here in Nashville at an event celebrating the lives and ministry of the Happy Goodman family for our good friends, Rick and Dianne Goodman. Well, while Dad was getting dressed for the event, he was having fits finding clothes to wear. He couldn’t find any combination of shirt and suit jacket that fit him quite right in the arm length. One arm fit correctly, but the other arm always showed more of the shirt’s cuff than it was supposed to. At this point, Mom and Dad took notice of just how much Dad’s back had been changing shape. They had noticed the curves making incremental shifts toward the center, but they had never really grasped just how much of a change there was. That night, during the event, Mom pointed out to me how that one of his cuffs was showing more than the other, and she told me about how much his back had straightened.

When I got home that evening, I got a chance to actually see his back up close and to feel the curve that I had felt before. Well, the curve is drastically improved. And the reason Dad’s suits aren’t fitting perfectly is because his shoulders are leveling out for the first time ever. The curve in his spine used to curve out about an inch and a half to the left near the top (cervical), then back across the center and an additional three inches to the right in the middle part (thoracic), and then back across the center again and another inch and a half or so to the left in the bot tom part (lumbar). Now, each of those curves has been reduced by at least one half. So the curve which used to go from one and a half inches left, to three inches right, to one and a half inches left again, is now something like half an inch left, to one and a quarter inches right, and then to half an inch left again. While this is still far from perfect, it is a huge step in a wonderful direction. The doctor says Dad is ready for another paralysis treatment, and we will, hopefully, see similar results this time.

Now, while I am understandably excited, and I hope that you are just as excited as I am, I do want you to understand that this does not necessarily mean the end of the curve or the end of the pain. The pain is still there, because his disks are still herniated. And the pain will not cease until the disks are corrected. The obvious hope is that, if his spine can straighten enough, that the disks will have a chance to return to normal. See, the reason the disks are in such bad shape is because they are under constant irritation, being pinched together by vertebrae that are improperly aligned. They are not going to return to normal unless sufficient straightening takes place. And, as much as we all hope that a second round of treatment will straighten his spine completely, there is no guarantee. It has never been proven that a spine can be straightened completely through isolated paralysis. This treatment is, therefore, almost experimental in nature – it is not a recognized “cure” for scoliosis. Also, on top of Dad having an unusually pronounced “double S” curve in his back, his spine has a rotation problem as well. The combination of the extreme curve and the rotation make his back one of the most complex cases out there, and there are no guarantees of just what this treatment can or cannot do. Plus, the treatments are very expensive themselves, as they are not covered by insurance. Since this is not a recognized “cure” or e ven a standardized treatment for scoliosis, the insurance companies do not view it as medically necessary. And, even on top of all that, whenever Dad does have another treatment performed, there is a strong chance that his normal function may be inhibited for a period of time, as was the case with the dreadful head-bob issue following the last treatment.

I’m not saying this to rain on the parade. I’m reminding you of these things to let you know that we still need your love, your prayers, and your support. I’m giving you the good and the bad. I’m hopeful for Dad’s progress and recovery, but grounded in reality as well. There is still a long road ahead, to be sure, but plenty of hope for the future.

As you know, it was a little more than a year ago that Dad informed all of you about his trip to Mayo clinic to have tests performed, in order to see if he was a candidate for surgery. In the past few months, several people have told us that, after seeing Dad on stage, it appeared that he is fine, now, because he didn’t seem to be in pain when he was speaking. Actually, Dad had dealt with constant pain long before he ever preached his first sermon, at age 17. He basically taught himself to smile through the pain, so that his physical challenges would not become the central focal point of any event. He has told me that he tries to always remember that, whether it’s a church service or a business convention, it’s never about the guy on stage. It’s about the people in the audience, and their lives and their needs. So, every time you have ever seen Dad on stage, he has been in pain. I say this so you will know that this is not a new battle for him. He has been fighting this enemy for 36 years, and believe me, it’s not over until he wins!

We continue to receive support from you every day, and we appreciate it all. You have been a wonderful source of strength for Dad, and I want you to know that we all appreciate what you do. Dad appreciates it, and so does Mom, but don’t forget about Sharah and me – we care, too, and we thank you all.

With Thanks and Blessings,

Kenneth Gorman

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August 3, 2006
Dear Friends and Partners,
It has now been three days since Mark’s spinal procedure at the spine clinic on Monday. They were unable to perform this procedure in all of his most painful areas. They could only treat his lumbar spine at the sacrum (low back). They also did trigger-point injections in his most painful areas in the cervical (neck) area, but those injections only provide pain relief for a couple of days, with his condition.

This afternoon, Mark and Dwayne will begin a driving trip from our home, in Franklin, Tennessee, to Virginia, where Mark will be speaking tomorrow night on a Christian television network. He will be the main speaker Friday night for their fundraising effort on behalf of their television network. As you know, God has gifted Mark in the area of teaching on Biblical financial perspectives. I am sure that he will be a great blessing, and that God will use him to spark faith in the hearts of many people to support that television network’s ministry outreach in their area.
You may recall that the severe problems in Mark’s low back, which recently caused him to temporarily need a cane to help him walk, were precipitated by a very long driving trip in July. Mark’s spine specialist agreed with Mark, that the long hours in a seated position in the car for a 1500 mile trip had caused significant problems in his lumbar spine. Although he is doing much better now, Mark will have to do special exercises to help strengthen the muscles which support that part of his spine. Monday’s procedure was a great help in alleviating the pain in that area. It did not eliminate the pain, but reduced it to a tolerable level (although a driving trip would not cause this type of problems for most people, keep in mind that Mark has 17 bad discs in his back: 9 herniated, 8 bulging, and 15 compressed).
In order to hopefully prevent further injury to Mark’s low back on this trip, we have switched travel vehicles. They will be using my SUV. Kenneth removed the seats from the back, and they have placed a small mattress in there, so Mark can lie down, when necessary, to help reduce tension on his spine.
Now that the low back pain has been reduced, his neck pain has increased greatly. Please be in prayer for him on Friday night. He will be on the air for 5 straight hours, from 7PM till midnight. Standing under those hot TV lights on live television for all that time can be very taxing on anyone. I know from experience that this would typically cause Mark to be in extreme pain by the time the night is over. Please join me in prayer for him at that time.
On Saturday, Dwayne will drive him from Virginia to the Atlanta area, where Mark will be speaking on Sunday, for Pastor Doug Nelms. This is the church which has ordered several cases of Mark’s book, “God’s Plan for Prosperity”, to be used as a textbook for a training course on Biblical finances. They have asked Mark to come in this Sunday and preach at the “inaugural service” for this teaching series.
I know that some of you may be asking why Mark is driving to these places instead of flying. Quite simply, there is no major airport in near proximity to the TV station in Virginia where Mark will be ministering. In fact, when Deanna checked on this, the nearest major airport, for full size airplanes, was Knoxville, Tennessee, which is only a couple of hours drive from our house. It just didn’t make sense for him to go through security at the airport in Nashville, fly to Atlanta, change planes, and then fly back to Knoxville, where he would have to still ride in a car for over three hours.
Please be in prayer for Mark on Sunday morning and evening, as he speaks at the church in Georgia. His travel days are today (Thursday), Saturday, and Monday. We would appreciate your praying Psalm 91 over them for travel safety, as well as, praying for God to strengthen Mark’s body and alleviate his pain.
We continue to believe God for Mark’s total healing, but until it manifests, he must continue to do as he has done for the past 36 years: to face the pain, and press on anyway. Thank you for standing with us in faith.
Several of you responded to my last email by becoming book sponsors for the reprinting of both of Mark’s new books. If any of you are still wanting to take advantage of this opportunity, you only have a few more days. Visit our online store at www.markgorman.com, or call the office in Franklin, Tennessee at 615-591-5900.
We love you all.
Sincerely,
Gina C. Gorman
 


 

 

July 31, 2006


Dear Friends and Partners,


Thank you for standing with us, praying for Mark as he continues to fight the battle over pain, believing for his healing.


Please be in prayer with us this afternoon. Mark will be undergoing another in a series of procedures he must have for his spine.


Although we are deeply grateful for the fact that Mark’s condition has improved so that he is able to get around without the cane, he still has a big mountain to climb, according to his doctors.


This past Thursday I took him to the spine specialist, who expressed significant concern about Mark’s recent problem with severe pain in his low back, which had temporarily inhibited his ability to walk. The doctor wanted to get Mark in as soon as possible for another treatment. His appointment is this afternoon at 1:30PM. I am driving him to the clinic for the procedure, because they will have to use anesthesia to cause him to sleep during the procedure. Afterwards, he will be unable to drive himself home, so I will be there to act as his “chauffeur”.


This Friday Mark will be speaking on a Christian Television Network in Virginia. The following day, Saturday, he will travel from there to Atlanta, where he will speak on Sunday. The church in Atlanta has ordered several cases of Mark’s book on God’s Plan For Prosperity, to teach a course to their congregation on Biblical financial perspectives over the next several weeks. They have asked Mark to speak this Sunday, to launch their training program, which will be based on his book.


By the way, speaking of his book, God’s Plan For Prosperity is about to go into its third printing. In addition, we have been approached by people who want to translate Mark’s book and publish it in India and Indonesia. We are also speaking to someone about having the book translated into Spanish as soon as possible.


I truly believe that, although Mark has lived with these physical challenges for more than 36 years, Satan has escalated his attack on Mark at the very time that the doors are opening around the world for Mark’s teaching on finances to set people free from the bondage of the spirit of poverty. This is not just a coincidence.


I know that, just as God is using “God’s Plan For Prosperity” to open the eyes of so many people around the world, He will also do the same with Mark’s newest book, “The Three Heavens”, which is already going into its second printing, just months after its release.


I’m sure that you have all seen the e-mail we sent last week, announcing the opportunity for you to be a “SPONSOR” for both of these books as they are reprinted. Keep in mind, in the past, in order to be a book “SPONSOR”, a person would sow a $100 seed, and their name would be listed on the SPONSOR page in that book, as well as receiving a signed copy of the book in which their name appears. Since both of these books need to be reprinted at the same time, we decided to make an offer for those who would like to be a sponsor of both books, having their names listed in each book, and receiving signed copies of the books containing their names for a seed of $150.


I’m sure that some of you will want to sow more towards this great project. If so, please provide the names you would like to have listed in the book: One name for each seed of $150.


If you would like to sow a seed online, using your credit card, use this link to be directed to our online store: http://www.markgorman.com/store/default.asp. In the store, select the category, "Sow A Seed". The rest is self-explanatory.


If you prefer to write to us, please send your seed to:
Mark Ministries, Inc. 2000 Mallory Lane, Ste 130-347, Franklin TN 37067
As always, you may also speak to one of our ministry team members by dialing the office at 615-591-5900, during normal business hours.


The deadline for this special is Tuesday, August 15, 2006.


Again, thank you for your prayerful support. I will give you an update soon on how things go today with Mark’s spinal procedure.


Please be in prayer with us that he will be able to travel this weekend and minister effectively.


Sincerely,


Gina Gorman
 

 


 

July 22, 2006


Dear Friends and Ministry Partners,


Thank you for praying with us for Mark this weekend. I have good news!


I want to give you a praise report. Mark is doing so much better today - Monday! He is able to walk around the house, unassisted, even up and down the stairs.

 
This is so much different than how he was doing this past weekend. Saturday night the pain was so bad, he couldn’t sleep all night. He finally fell asleep at around 7 AM Sunday morning. He slept most of the day Sunday, and still went to bed last night at his normal bedtime, and slept all night long.


He awoke at 6:30 this morning, got up and took his shower and ate his breakfast before meeting with our staff in the office.


He is still battling his way through the pain, but is determined to win this battle.
We are making sure that he doesn’t rush back into things too quickly. He is going to the chiropractor again this afternoon, followed by physical therapy and exercise to strengthen his muscles for supporting the spine.


Although we are thrilled that he is doing better, we are also very much aware of the fact that there is still a great mountain for us to climb in regards to his health. Keep in mind, although many of you have only learned recently of Mark’s physical challenges, he has been living with them for more than 36 years.


Every time you have seen him on stage, speaking, singing, or even making you laugh with his humor, he was doing all of that in pain. Only recently has Mark felt led to share these things with you, our partners and friends. He didn’t talk about it for years because he didn’t want his condition to affect your faith in God. Mark always has believed in God’s ability to heal. He confesses his healing every day. But he also lives with the pain that has been with him all these years.


I know that as some of you have read my e-mails, you may have feared that Mark’s ministry was threatened by his condition. Keep in mind, he had this condition for several years before he preached his first sermon. His entire professional speaking career has been built in spite of the pain. I can assure you that, although there may be momentary setbacks, Mark will never let the pain win. He is determined to overcome this challenge.


Please keep believing with us for Mark’s complete healing.


Sincerely,
Gina Gorman
 

 


 

July 21, 2006


Dear Friends & Partners,


I just realized that it has been a month since I sent the last update on Mark. Please forgive me for not writing sooner. Many of you have sent kind words in e-mails, cards and letters, thanking us for keeping you updated on Mark. But as you know, we also receive criticism from some who are offended that we are writing to you about Mark’s challenges. Some people think that it is selfish of us to write to you about his condition, so we have tried not to offend people by sending too many e-mails. Now, today, I realize that we’ve gone too far in the other direction – one whole month without an update. I didn’t realize it had been that long. I’m sorry.


First, let me begin by asking you to continue praying for Mark. He was scheduled to speak at a church in Lincoln, Nebraska this weekend, but the trip had to be canceled because some new physical challenges prevented him from flying. In fact, he can barely walk. He’s using a cane we borrowed from a friend, just to get around the house.


This past Sunday night Mark’s low back basically “locked up”. The pain levels were pretty severe. Over the years, he has learned to tolerate certain amounts of pain, but I could tell by looking at him that this was really bad. At times we had to assist him just to get in and out of bed.


Mark was not going to allow this to keep him from doing what needed to be done, so he had us bring chairs into the bedroom so we could have a staff meeting around the bed.


I know that some of you may be wondering why we didn’t tell you then about Mark’s situation. Basically, Mark was hoping that this would be a temporary challenge, and that he could overcome it in time to travel to Nebraska to preach this weekend. This week he had numerous spine treatments of different types on a daily basis, in hopes that these would result in his ability to fulfill his commitment for this weekend.


After seeking the advice of different medical professionals, it seems that this was probably the result of a car trip of approximately 1500 miles round-trip. (We drove from our home in Franklin, TN to Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri, for Mark to speak at a business convention for our dear friends Jerry and Cherry Meadows last weekend. From there, Mark and Dwayne drove on to Oklahoma City, where Mark spoke at a national pastor’s conference. Then, Dwayne and Mark drove back home to Franklin.)


Apparently, because of the instability of the muscles in his spine at this time, the long periods seated in the same position in the car must have pulled or pushed something out of place in his low back, which resulted in the aggravation and pinching of some of the nerves in that area, radiating down the leg as well.


Although we had to call the pastor in Nebraska, and ask to reschedule Mark for a future date, Mark is still of the mindset to fight back and win over this challenge.


Last night, we received a phone call at the house from our dear friend Rick Goodman. When he learned that we had to borrow his father’s walking cane for Mark, Rick became furious with the devil for inflicting such pain in Mark’s body. As he was praying with me over the phone, and my hand was on Mark’s knee, praying for him, Rick spoke something that was “quickened” in my spirit. When I repeated it to Mark, he immediately agreed that this was a word from the Lord. Rick said, “Satan is trespassing on God’s property. He has no right to be there. He must leave Mark alone.”


Even after the phone call, Mark kept saying “Satan has been trespassing. He must be evicted. He has no rights here.”


When Mark got up today to get ready for another trip to the clinic for a spinal treatment, he kept declaring that Satan has trespassed on God’s property and he has no rights here.


I want to ask all of you who are praying with us, to agree with us in prayer that the trespassing must stop now and the healing must come!


One of the things that Mark has said to me on several occasions, is that he knows that there are many people in this world who have more pain and greater difficulties than we have ever faced. We do not think that we are the only ones who have ever had a “bad day”. One thing for sure, is that all of these struggles Mark has encountered for 36 years of non-stop pain, is that he has become very sensitive and compassionate towards others in pain. Often, someone will tell Mark of their situation, with one or two bulging discs or a herniated disc. You might expect that Mark would respond by telling them that he has 17 discs like that. But instead, you can see on his face that he truly empathizes with their pain, and reaches out to them, to pray for their healing.


Over the years, Mark has seen many miracles in his ministry. I remember one time when he was speaking at a business convention in Canberra, Australia. There was a line of people in the lobby of the auditorium waiting to meet Mark after the function. As he stood there, greeting each one, a lady, who had stood in that line, told Mark that she had been diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor. Right there in the lobby of that auditorium, Mark laid hands on her and prayed for her healing.


Two weeks later, back home in America, we received a phone call telling us that the lady in Australia had gone to her doctor for additional tests, and they verified that she was completely healed – no cancer!


Over the years, I would say that Mark has had more people healed of spinal conditions through his ministry than anything else. And yes, he has been criticized by many people because he hasn’t yet received his healing. Some have been so insensitive as to say to his face that, “if he is really a man of God, he should already be healed.”


We don’t understand all of this. Mark is not angry with God. He still tells people that God can heal. We keep believing for Mark’s healing, too. But until then, we must keep pressing on, refusing to let Satan win. True, this weekend Mark missed out on the opportunity to speak in Nebraska. But his heart for God and for ministry is still the same. He refuses to give up.


As you already know, Mark’s doctor instructed him to reduce his travel schedule by half, for the next few months, so that he only travels every other week, with time at home between trips, for treatments. That means that this was Mark’s week to travel and speak, and next week was to be his time home for treatments. In other words, it will be 2 weeks before Mark’s next opportunity to speak somewhere. You can believe that while he’s home, he will be working with our staff to keep things moving ahead on several new projects that God has put on his heart.


Many of you have been thoughtful and generous towards us during this trying time. Mark and I have been so touched by the kindness and generosity you have shown. I’m sure you know that by us having to cancel Mark’s ministry trip this week, this will place an added financial strain on the ministry. If God lays it on your heart to sow a seed, and help us at this time, it would be greatly appreciated. If you are unable to do so, we would certainly appreciate your continued prayers for Mark’s complete healing.


Also, if you have a prayer need, and you would like for us to agree with you for your answer, please feel free to reply to this e-mail with your prayer need. God answers prayer, and we will pray for you.


Sincerely,


Gina Gorman


PS: Many of you know Mark’s cousin, Dwayne, and his wife, Deanna, who work closely with us in the ministry. We rejoice with them, that their home in Louisiana sold, and they have now purchased a beautiful home in Spring Hill, Tennessee, near Franklin, where we live. Now, we will have them right here in the office with us. What a blessing!
 

 


 

June 21, 2006


Dear Friends & Ministry Partners,


It’s been a couple of weeks since my last update on Mark. We try not to overwhelm you with loads of e-mails, detailing every event in our lives.


As I mentioned in my last e-mail, we were preparing to travel to Canada for Mark to speak at a church in Vancouver. As the time drew near for that trip, we realized that it would actually be better if we sent Kenneth, instead of me, to accompany Mark. That way, he could help with lifting anything for Mark, helping him onto the plane, etc.


Mark had some physical challenges on the day of the trip, which delayed their travel until the following day. This resulted in Mark missing out on speaking at the Saturday morning session of the “Marketplace Ministry Seminar” sponsored by the church. They delayed the afternoon session until Mark and Kenneth’s plane arrived, and they could get to the church for Mark to speak.


I’m sure you won’t be surprised that everyone there was absolutely blessed by Mark’s ministry in that session. Kenneth said that people just swarmed them at the table in the foyer after Mark spoke, wanting to meet Mark, and to tell him how blessed they were by his fresh insights into the Word of God.


As you might guess, after flying from Nashville to Vancouver, BC, Canada, and then speaking for over an hour, Mark was in no condition to attend the dinner they had planned for him afterward. Unfortunately, they had to just take them straight to the hotel. Mark was in very severe pain, and needed to lie down, to relieve the pressure on his neck.


The next morning, Sunday, Mark felt led of God to teach from his book, “God’s Plan For Prosperity”. He taught on “The 4 Types Of Giving”, which is very unusual, since he normally would not preach on that, as his first time speaking at a church. (He had never spoken at this church before.)


After the service, Pastor Giulio Gabeli and his wife, Lena, told Mark that his message was absolutely awesome, and that their whole congregation was thrilled with Mark’s ministry.


After some much needed rest that afternoon, Mark spoke again on Sunday night, teaching on Vision. In each of the services, including the Saturday afternoon teaching session, there were several visitors who had driven in to hear Mark, after receiving notification from our ministry that he would be speaking there. Most of these friends had first been introduced to Mark at business conventions, where they had heard him speak.


One of them told Mark that he had given a CD of Mark’s speaking to a business associate who is a Muslim. Isn’t that awesome? Because of Mark’s speaking in the business arena, a Muslim, who wouldn’t normally listen to someone from outside their religion, was now listening to Mark teach business principles from the Bible.


After each of the services, Mark was in severe pain, but he said it was worth it, to know that lives were being touched.


Prior to any of the recent developments regarding Mark’s physical condition, several months ago he had asked Dwayne to leave the calendar open on Father’s Day, so he could be home with our family. It was good to have him home with all of us that weekend.


After the Canada trip, we consulted with doctors who agreed that for the next couple of months he should only travel every other week, and take a week off between trips. As you know from my previous e-mail, they recently injected certain muscles in his neck with a medicine which paralyzes those muscles. At first, he couldn’t hold his head up for more than 20 to 30 minutes at a time before losing the ability to control it. But as time goes by, he is developing better muscle control.


Yesterday I drove him to the doctor’s office for his appointment. The doctor explained that it was necessary to paralyze those muscles, since they were not the main muscles which should be supporting the head and neck. Basically, for most of his life, his neck and head has been supported by smaller muscles which were not designed to support all of that weight. By temporarily disabling those overworked muscles, which were in severe spasm, they have basically forced the correct muscles to start doing their job, to hold up his head.


The doctor explained that this is a very painful process, lasting for at least 3 months, because since these muscles had not been doing their job for all of these years, they can’t support his head and neck for long periods of time. He said that instead of just becoming fatigued, when they get too tired, they go into severe spasm, causing more severe pain.


He said that for now, it’s just a waiting process to see what happens in the next couple of months. He agreed wholeheartedly that Mark should not be traveling every week, and was happy that we are making him take time off between trips. And yes, we’re still restricting him from e-mail and telephone. Those who need him are able to reach the rest of us, and we are taking care of things while he heals.


This Friday Mark and I are flying to Alaska. That’s right. This is the same church he was scheduled to speak for a couple of months ago. Then, we moved the date, hoping that he could go a couple of weeks later. And now, this is our third try. Mark is determined to speak at this church, for his friend, Pastor Michael Rose in Juneau.
Mark is excited to be speaking there twice on Sunday morning and once Sunday evening. We are asking you to lift him up in prayer, that he will be strong and pain free for this time of ministry.


And, we are still believing and praying for Marks’ miracle. We don’t understand why it hasn’t happened yet, but we refuse to give up. And I think it is a testimony to Mark’s faith and determination, that he is still out there pressing forward, and not giving up when others would. I’m proud of him.


By the way, speaking of heroes, one of our dear friends, Tony Renard, passed away last week. Mark and I spoke with his wife Sue by phone shortly afterward. Tony had a special place in his heart for Mark, and Mark still has a special place in his heart for Tony, as do I. Many of you will remember hearing Tony’s piano playing and story telling on a CD Of The Month last year. We will surely miss him.


Let me close by saying “Thank You” to so many of you who have reached out to us during this season of testing for Mark, our family and our ministry. Thank you for believing in us and showing your support by sending the kind words in e-mails, letters and cards, along with your financial support as well. Most of all, thank you for your prayers.
Admittedly, since we have had to “thin out” Mark’s calendar for the next couple of months, this will surely impact the ministry financially. Please believe with us for God’s provision during this time. Although Mark does not ask you to give to the ministry, as his wife, I do ask that, if God lays it on your heart, please sow a generous seed into the fertile soil of this ministry.


By the way, just yesterday we mailed out the signed copies of Mark’s book, “The 3 Heavens”, to those of you who sowed seeds to become Sponsors of that book. Your names are listed on the Sponsor Pages at the back of the book. Already several thousand lives have been touched by the teachings of that book, and it was just recently released. Thank you for sowing your seed to help us share Mark’s teaching on Spiritual Warfare with so many who need it.


Also, many of you have sowed seeds of $1,000 or more in recent weeks, to offer support for the ministry at this time. As you know, anyone who sows $1,000 or more in a year is a Strategic Partner. Not only does your name go on the list that Mark prays for each day for the next year, but also, we will be sending you your signed copy of the 2006 Strategic Partner Bible. Those who sow this amount over a 12 month period, on a monthly basis, will receive one of the Bibles. Those who sow the entire amount at one time will receive two Bibles.


We apologize for the delay in shipping these books and Bibles, but it is difficult for Mark to sign anything, since looking down puts his head in a painful posture. He can only sign a few at a time. Please bear with us. The Bibles will be shipped soon.


We love and appreciate all of you for all that you do. Those of you who are Ministry Partners, be looking for your CD Of The Month in the mail soon. I know you will be blessed by this month’s message.


Sincerely,


Gina Gorman
 

 


 

June 5, 2006


Dear Friends & Ministry Partners,


Many of you have been asking for updates on Mark. We apologize for not sending this sooner, but quite honestly, we have been overwhelmed in the past, by the constant barrage of e-mails from other ministry organizations, who seem to send updates on an hourly basis. Therefore, in an attempt to ensure that we would not become a similar source of frustration to you, we have “held off” from sending an update for the past couple of weeks.


Unfortunately, Mark has been unable to travel since the last time you heard from us. That means that he has only spoken at one event in the past 6 weeks.


This next Friday, Mark and I are scheduled to fly to Canada – to Vancouver, British Columbia. He will be speaking at a ministry conference there on the Saturday, and a church on the Sunday. Please agree with us that Mark can make that trip, and every trip thereafter.


The doctors are still trying to get his pain levels under control. Ever since the injections to paralyze certain troublesome muscles in his neck area, he has had difficulty holding his head up for more than a few minutes at a time. When the muscles become fatigued, he has to wear a cervical collar, to support the weight of his head. We are praying that he won’t have to wear the cervical collar to preach next weekend.


Some of Mark’s friends who are respected medical doctors, are working to connect Mark with a world-renowned neurosurgeon, to see if he can do anything to relieve the worst pain problems in Mark’s spine, cervical and lumbar.


Last week Mark's parents came to spend a few days with us. They have been very concerned about Mark, so Poppa decided to just take some time off from his own speaking and travel schedule, so that he and Nanny could have some quality time with Mark, and our family. It was great to have them here with us, with absolutely no plans - nothing scheduled - just time to enjoy each other's company. In fact, Sharah cooked a few goodies for Poppa and Nanny while they were here.


Some other friends were in town this weekend, and came to the house to see Mark on Saturday evening. I had warned them ahead of time that if Mark didn’t feel up to it, we would have to cancel on short notice, but they were willing to take that chance. Mark was so happy to see our friends, Dexter & Birdie Yager, and Tommy & Lesia Harper when they walked into our home Saturday evening. They all had words of encouragement and faith for Mark. Birdie gave Mark some teaching tapes and a book on healing, and they anointed Mark with oil and prayed for his total healing. They also spoke prophetically, that they believe that this is a time of major transition for Mark’s life and ministry, and that he should be open to the new things that God is going to do in our lives through this.


Birdie said that she hasn't been able to stop thinking about Mark for the past several weeks. She knew that God had put him on her heart, so that she would pray for him more than ever before. She said that even if they hadn't had other obligations which required them to travel to Nashville, she and Dexter would have flown here just to see Mark, and pray for him.


Many of you have sent beautiful cards and notes, along with your financial support for our ministry. Mark will sometimes sit and read the cards again. He remarks to me of how appropriate the words are in each card. Last week he received a couple of cards from his younger sister, Beverly. Tears came to his eyes as he read her cards.


Last night he sat up in bed and said, “Ten years ago, if someone would have told us that we would have to go through 6 weeks of time with me unable to speak anywhere, except one event during that 6 weeks, we would have been in a panic! Isn’t it wonderful how God has touched the hearts of our partners to support and sustain us through this time? I’m just amazed at the generosity of our friends!”


One of the greatest blessings for Mark during the past 6 weeks, has also been a great frustration to many of you. That is the fact that his doctor has given instructions to Mark to stop using e-mail and his cell phone until further notice from the doctor. At first, that seemed a bit extreme, but now, 6 weeks later, I can tell you that it has done a “world of good” for Mark. His stress levels have dropped significantly, which has also affected his pain levels in a positive way.


The added blessing has been that, without the constant ringing of his cell phone, or constantly seeing him with his Blackberry Handheld in his hand, replying to e-mails, he has had more time to spend with our family. He has enjoyed long talks with Kenneth & Sharah, about their plans for the future, and he has enjoyed watching a few movies with them as well – especially cop movies. Kenneth keeps teasing him, saying that watching videos of “24” and CSI are not good for relieving muscle spasms. But Mark balances those with some documentary DVDs he bought about the “Rise & Fall Of The Roman Empire”, “Ancient Civilizations”, “The History Of America” and of course, his favorite, World War II. As you might imagine, after hearing some of his presentations like "The Twig Of '93", you already know that with every new movie he watches, his mind is working, thinking of new ideas for future speaking topics - how to learn "life lessons" from everything.


He also sits in his easy chair watching “home movies” of our children when they were younger. This sometimes results in laughter, and sometimes in tears.


Mark has also had time to enjoy the beautiful view from our deck, with our dogs, Tootie and Coco, at his feet or in his lap. In fact, the kids and I went to Cracker Barrel and bought him an early Father’s Day gift of a couple of rocking chairs for the deck. (Remember, we didn’t have these beautiful Tennessee Hills in New Orleans.) Mark can sit in the rocking chair and “prop” his head against the tall chair back as he rocks and looks at the beautiful trees.


All of this has been very healing for him. Mark’s life is usually lived at such a frantic pace, that he barely has time to unpack from one trip, before packing for the next one. This forced time off has served to lower his stress levels, and as a result, it has had an effect on his overall health. (That’s what his doctor told us last week.)


(Although Mark has had a rest from phone calls, it seems that I’ve been catching most of that activity on his behalf. I’ve been overwhelmed with lots and lots of calls. Please forgive me if you have left a message and haven’t heard back from me. It seems that, in order for Mark to rest, I’m having to work double time.)


In the midst of all of this, Mark has been formulating plans for new books to write, teaching videos that he wants to record (once he can hold his head up without difficulty), and even how to get a television ministry started. Oh yeah, he has also been discussing book distribution with different companies. (Actually, Mark has been talking to someone who is doing all of the negotiating for us – one of our closest friends.)


We want to thank all of you for your kindness, your prayers and your financial support.
I will admit that finances are still strained, considering the fact that Mark hasn’t been doing much speaking. Your generosity has helped to sustain us. We could definitely use more financial help, especially considering all of Mark’s plans to write more books, record teaching DVDs, and to eventually produce a television program for broadcast. He has lots of vision, and great plans for the future.


Mark truly believes that this is a time of transition for him – for us. And he is doing all he can to pursue what God is leading him to do.


Oh, by the way, he is also planning to co-author a book on mentoring, "Spiritual Fathers & Spiritual Sons", with his dad.


As you can see, Mark may not be running at 100%, but his mind is definitely working and planning great things.


Again, although Mark will not ask you to give to our ministry, as his wife, I am asking you, if you can, to help us at this time. We truly thought that by now, he would have already been traveling and speaking again. We are believing that he can make the trip this next weekend, to Canada.


If God speaks to you to sow a seed, please do so. We trust you, our partners and friends, to hear God and to take the steps of faith that He leads you to take.


We pray that God will bring an abundant harvest to each of you who have given: each family, each individual, each company and each church who has given generously. We love you all and pray for God’s abundant blessings in your life.


Sincerely,


Gina Gorman
 

 


 

May 22, 2006

Dear Friends & Ministry Partners,
Thank you so much for all of your prayers and support during the past few weeks. Also, thank you for so many thoughtful cards, with wording that seems like it was written just for me. I know it takes time to choose such special cards. Thank you for your thoughtfulness.
Well, we have good news and bad news – Ha! Which do you want first?

First, the good news is that the doctor has been able to reduce the pain levels.

But the bad news is that the reduced pain level is still debilitating. Besides that, following the injections to paralyze, or incapacitate some of my muscles, now my neck can’t properly support my head for more than about 20 to 30 minutes at a time. After that, it begins to sort of wobble around, out of control. It is VERY frustrating and embarrassing.

The doctor was concerned because of my lack of ability to control my head, and because of the pain, which is still at unacceptable levels. He apologized because he hasn’t been able to fully relieve the pain yet.

Based on my condition, he strongly requested that I cancel my plans to fly to Alaska for this past weekend, and delay that trip until another time. (Throughout this weekend, it became obvious that the doctor was right, and I should not have tried to travel this past weekend.) I had been looking forward to this trip for quite some time. Our son Kenneth was going to accompany me on the Alaska trip.

We’re hoping to be able to make that trip before too long. Please keep praying with us for my total healing. God’s Word says that I’m healed, and I am claiming that every day.

Many of you have given generously in response to Gina’s e-mails. We can’t thank you enough for your generosity and compassion.

As you know, I’m a fighter – not a quitter. It’s difficult for me to just lie around waiting for things to get better. But as I stated previously, the muscles in my neck aren’t doing a good job of supporting my head, so I don’t have much choice for now.

By the way, in the meantime, we had a television lighting expert come to the house last week to estimate what it will cost to light my office downstairs, so we can turn it into a mini-studio for me to record DVDs of my teaching. We figure that the whole project will cost less than $5,000, to turn the office into a TV studio setting. Once it is set up, I can choose when I want to go downstairs to record my teachings. That way, if I’m not feeling 100%, I can wait a few hours until I feel better, and then just walk downstairs and start the camera.

This won’t be what we use for television programs. What we record downstairs will only be videos of teaching.

We plan to use a television recording studio in the area to record a “pilot” show, as a sample to give to TV stations, for their consideration. We haven’t gotten too far down that road yet, so I have no idea of the costs for something like that. But I will let you know as we make progress on this. I know that over the years, many of you have encouraged me to start a weekly television teaching program. Well, we’re on our way.

It is so wonderful that you, our partners, don’t have to be “badgered or begged” to give. We simply let you know about an opportunity, and you are faithful to sow seed, without us having to beg, or to even ask. All we do is tell you about it, and you jump to action. You are wonderful people.

I pray for many of you on a daily basis – Strategic Partners - those who have planted a seed of $1,000 or more within the last year. I also pray daily for the Vision Partners – those who have sowed $5,000 or more within the past year. And I pray that God will give abundant harvest to all of you who have planted a seed of any size to help us at this time.

During the past few weeks, as I have felt somewhat helpless – unable to do what I need to do to keep the ministry going, I have been humbled by those who have jumped to our aid, keeping the ministry moving forward, even though I’ve been on the “sidelines”.
We’ve also been disappointed by others who claim to be our friends, who have criticized us for even mentioning this situation to you. They implied that we have lied to you when we say that we don’t ask for money, and then we give you the opportunity to sow seed. Whether they want to admit it or not, until Gina’s last e-mail, when she DID ask for money, based on the advice of one of my mentors, prior to that, we DID NOT ask for money. We only told you of the situation, and then gave you the opportunity to do what you chose. And if you’ve been in a church service where someone asked – even begged for money, you KNOW the difference. We DO NOT pressure you EVER to give to this ministry. If any of you sow a seed, it is by your own choice – not because of any pressure from us. We don’t do that.

But to all of you who have voluntarily planted seeds during the last month, in response to the situation we are facing, I want to say a heartfelt Thank You, and to assure you that I am asking God to bless you in a special way with abundant harvest.

You are precious to us, and to God. Thank you for being true friends. Remember, Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friend loveth at all times…” You are true friends.

Please keep on praying with us. We aren’t sure if I will be able to travel to preach next weekend. If not, that will be another disappointment. But I’m praying and believing that I will be able to travel, and to speak. Please keep believing with us. And again, thank you for your generosity.

Blessings,
Mark
PS: By the way, under doctor’s orders, I’m still NOT supposed to be doing ANY e-mail or telephone calls for at least another week. I “sneaked” this e-mail because I wanted to thank all of you for all you’ve done. But please do not assume that I’m “back in the swing of things” yet, with e-mail or telephone. Not for at least another week.
PSS: We have received several generous packages from you, containing nutritional drinks and juices, and other supplements. Thank You. Others of you have expressed a concern about my vitamin supplements, particularly glyconutrients. Thank you so much. I have been taking mega doses for several months. Please believe with me for positive results from the glyconutrients and the other supplements. God Bless You. Mark

 


 

May 12, 2006

Dear Friends & Ministry Partners,

First, let me say RELAX, this email won’t be nearly as long as the last two. Ha!

But I wanted to give you an update following the e-mail I had sent to you last night. The response has been overwhelming, with so many of you sending notes of such encouragement and faith. Thank you so much for reaching out to us in this way.

Also, many of you have generously sowed seed after receiving that e-mail, either by calling our office, or by using our online Store on www.markgorman.com. We appreciate every seed, regardless of size.

Today, as Deanna was speaking to us by phone, detailing the different seeds that had been given, Mark said, “We need to stop right now and pray.” He took quite a while praying and thanking God for each person who had given. He said that he knew that for some of the people, what they were giving, they could have used for their own families, and that it is humbling to know that they have reached out to us in this way. He asked God to give each person a 100 fold return on the seed you have sown.

By the way, today, Mark returned to the doctor’s office for the third time this week. They made several injections into the most painful areas in his neck, and even the side of his head. The purpose of this medicine is to basically paralyze the muscles that are causing the most spasm and pain in those areas. The doctor said that it will take at least 3 days to a week for this to take effect, but that if it works correctly, it could give him relief in those areas for up to 2 or 3 months.

Before they started, Mark asked if they could give him something to numb the area, so the injections wouldn’t hurt so bad, since they had to insert the needle into the exact areas of the greatest pain. The doctor explained that any numbing medication could possible compromise, or break down the other medication which was being injected to disable the spasm in those muscles. When he heard that, Mark said that it was fine, he could take the pain for a few minutes, in order to get the long term results. Amazingly, he held very still as each of the injections were made.

Now, we wait to see the results. Please believe with us for this to bring long term relief to Mark.

Before I close, I want to share something with you. Some of our dear friends, who we met through Mark’s speaking at business conventions, had sent Mark a very special card this week. She told me that she had to go to two different stores to find just the right card for Mark. How amazing, that she would go to so much trouble, just to find the right card!

Well, today, after reading the e-mail I had sent last night, they called our office and sowed a very generous seed. Later, they called me at home to check on Mark’s progress. When we spoke, she said that after reading the e-mail, her husband said that he felt that they were to sow that amount of seed – a much larger amount than they had ever planted. What a blessing!

As I re-read the card she had sent, and shared it with Mark, he said that these were the most perfect words that anyone could have sent about what he is going through right now. I hope I’m not breaking any copyright laws by sharing it with all of you, but I want you to read this precious poem.

Before I share it, let me close by saying once again, Thank You so much for all of your prayers, encouragement and generosity.

Sincerely,
Gina Gorman


“The Oak Tree”

A Mighty wind
Blew night and day.
It stole the oak tree’s leaves away,
Then snapped its boughs
And pulled its bark
Until the oak was tired and stark.
But still the oak tree held its ground
While other trees
Fell all around.

The weary wind gave up and spoke,
“How can you still be standing, Oak?”
The oak tree said,
“I know that you
Can break each branch of mine in two,
Carry every leaf away,
Shake my limbs, and make me sway.
But I have roots
Stretched in the earth,
Growing stronger since my birth.
“You’ll never touch them,
For you see,
They are the deepest part of me.
Until today, I wasn’t sure
Of just how much I could endure.
But now I’ve found,
With thanks to you,
I’m stronger than I ever knew.”

© Hallmark Licensing, Inc.
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
 


 

May 11, 2006

Dear Friends and Ministry Partners,

Thank you so much for your prayers for Mark these past weeks. First let me apologize for not sending an update sooner. I can’t begin to describe how harrowing and stressful the past 2 weeks have been, not only for Mark, but also for the rest of our family.
As of now, the doctors have identified 5 different pain medicines which Mark cannot take, because of symptoms ranging from repetitive involuntary muscle spasms, to severe, violent vomiting and extreme nausea.

Some of the medication even caused Mark’s breathing to become so shallow, that we could not even tell if he was breathing in his sleep. At first, my solution was to stand next to him, continually waking him up, making him take deep breaths, so I would know that he was okay. He was so miserable in pain, that he begged me to let him go back to sleep. After about an hour of that, Kenneth, Sharah and I decided that it would be better to take turns watching him sleep, to make sure he was breathing through the night.

The following day the doctor explained that this medicine was very necessary for Mark’s treatment but that there is a slight risk, that if coupled with other medicines, it could potentially stop his breathing. Therefore, he said that we were doing the right thing and encouraged us to continue our “all night vigils” by Mark’s bedside. Sharah ended up doing most of the all-nighters, counting his number of breaths per minute, as the doctor had instructed. She never once complained about this task, but gladly chose to do what was needed to help her dad get well. Mark said that she was his “guardian angel” as tears ran down his face. He said that after these two weeks, as far as he’s concerned Sharah has permanent angel’s wings for life.

Mark has had several clinical procedures, which had to be performed in a surgical environment, all of which were designed to help reduce the pain levels in his spine. He had to be sedated under an anesthesia which was strong enough to make him sleep during the procedure, so he would not make any involuntary movements while the needle was being inserted so near to his spinal cord.

One of the treatments was a cervical block epidural which was supposed to give him a minimum of 2 weeks’ relief, but it only helped for 24 hours. After this epidural, the pain was worse than before the treatment. The doctor said that one possibility was that the needle may have further irritated that part of his spine while being inserted.

This week he received injections into the facet joints of his neck, which we hope will greatly reduce his pain. If these are not successful at bringing him relief, the next step will be radio frequency treatment, which will actually kill the nerves in his neck that are sending the pain signals to his brain. The nerves grow back after 3 months, so this is not a permanent solution.

All of these clinical protocols have been very painful for Mark. When they don’t use the anesthesia which sedates him into sleep during the procedure, he ends up in tears from the pain as they are putting injections into the areas that bring him the most pain. It breaks my heart to see him going through all of this. Each time the doctor must insert the needle into the most painful muscles and nerves to inject the solution, Mark must remain completely still to prevent the needle from causing damage to his spine. It’s difficult for me to sit in the room with him, watching him remain completely still as he helps the doctor identify the most painful areas in which to insert the needle. He doesn’t move a muscle. Only the tears in his eyes indicate the amount of pain he is in as the needle is inserted and the injection takes place. The doctor is so kind, he apologizes for the pain and asks Mark if he is okay. Mark only says one thing over and over again, “Thank You.” He knows that this temporary pain will result in relief which will last for several hours, and he considers that to be a worthwhile investment. He just keeps believing God that one day this will all be unnecessary.

As I have been with him for each of these procedures, I have been reminded of a classic children’s story, “The Velveteen Rabbit”. I don’t know if you are familiar with the story, but it’s about a stuffed toy rabbit that wanted to become “Real”. One day the Rabbit asked the Skin Horse in the nursery, “What is Real”? The Skin Horse replied, “Real isn’t how you are made, it’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time not just to play with, but really loves you, then you become Real”. “Does it hurt?” asked the rabbit. The Skin Horse replied, “Sometimes, but when you are Real you don’t mind being hurt. It doesn’t happen all at once, you become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because when you are Real, you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand. Once you are Real, you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always.”

For the past 36 years since age 12, when this condition first manifested in his body, Mark has been on a journey, becoming “Real”. Not everyone would make such a journey. It requires courage and determination and a refusal to give up. Mark is determined to win. He has been through so much, that the doctors have been amazed by him. They told him that he has the strongest will of anyone they have ever seen. Every time they decide to try a new procedure on him, knowing it will be very painful, they are surprised that he never declines. He is determined to be free of this spinal disease, and he is willing to go through whatever they feel he needs to, in order to have a better “quality of life”.

I want to say a special thank you to many of you who reached out to us during this time. As you know, Mark has made a commitment to never put pressure on any of you to give to this ministry. Writing my last e-mail 2 weeks ago was very difficult. I knew that by telling you of our situation, I would be walking a fine line between the sympathy tugging at your heart strings, and maintaining Mark’s commitment not to ask for money. Even after clicking “Send”, I questioned whether my motives would be misinterpreted.

I must admit that I was very hurt to learn of several people who asked to be removed from our e-mail list after reading my last e-mail about Mark’s condition. Was it really that bad? I figured that anyone who believed enough in Mark’s teachings to join our e-mail list would certainly be interested in his physical health, which will have a direct impact on his ability to continue giving the teachings which inspired them to join our list in the first place. In the big picture, it wasn’t thousands or even hundreds who asked to be removed from the list, but it still hurts, as a wife who is reaching out for people who will believe with us for us for my husband’s healing. He has been so strong and courageous over the years, but enough is enough! In recent years the pain has become so severe that it is debilitating at times. It has to end! Whether we receive our answer through prayer, through doctors, or a combination of the two, we will not give up!

Well, you are still here. That means that you are not one of the ones who asked to be removed from the list. You care not only about what you can receive from Mark’s teachings, but you also care about him as a person, and for that, I thank you. Many of you gave generously to help us through this difficult season, which appears to be the first of many such times we will face as the doctors continue to seek the best cures for Mark’s condition. They have already informed us that we will have to adjust Mark’s travel calendar in the future to allow for other periods of time “off the road” for the additional treatments which they believe to be necessary for his health in the long run. Obviously, this causes me great concern, knowing that our income may be suspended during each of those “off periods”. But God is our source, and with friends like you, I know we will make it.

One of our dear friends, who we have known for many years, is also one of Mark’s mentors, Dr. Mike Murdock. Many of you will recognize his name as one of the most gifted speakers and communicators anywhere. Mike has been a very important part of our lives for many years. Mark has known him, literally, all his life. At age 13, I accepted Christ for the first time at a church service in New Orleans where Mike Murdock was speaking, at the church pastored by Mark’s dad. That was the beginning of my involvement in that church, where I met my sweetheart. Needless to say, Dr. Murdock is very close to our hearts for many reasons.

Immediately after sending my previous e-mail about Mark’s condition, our office was contacted by the executive assistant to Dr. Mike Murdock. She said that he wanted to “overnight a generous seed” to our home, so we would receive it personally. Knowing our close friendship, our staff gave the home address to his assistant, and the following day we received the generous check, along with a note from Mike. Although he was very kind and compassionate in what he said, he also gave me a slight rebuke. He admired my attempt to refrain from asking for financial support at this time, but he said that I was wrong, and that our partners should be asked – by me – Mark’s wife – to reach out to us and help at this time.

So, although Mark has promised not to do this, I haven’t actually made that promise. As his wife, in submission to one of Mark’s mentors, I am reaching out to those of you who love Mark, and what he stands for, asking you to help if you can. I realize that some of you may be facing your own challenges at this time, and I fully respect that. I am not asking anyone to be inconvenienced in any way in order to help us with financial support. (Although I will tell you from experience that every time Mark leaves for a trip to go speak somewhere, it is a TOTAL physical inconvenience for him. He never complains about it. He just does what needs to be done.)

If you choose not to give anything, that is fine too. But please agree with us in prayer for Mark’s healing, and for wisdom for the doctors as they seek the appropriate path of treatment for Mark’s condition. By their own admission, he is in the top 10% of most difficult cases to treat for pain, simply because his pain is not limited to one or two areas. His problems range from C1, at the base of his skull, all the way down to S1, the sacrum, and everything in between. For that reason, they are unsure as to what treatments, how many, etc, will be necessary in order to help Mark to continue to function as he needs to do.

I realize that we will be criticized by some who believe that we should not even go to doctors for help with this. That is their prerogative. But we are doing all we know to do in order to keep Mark going. He doesn’t want to quit. In fact, he has dreams and visions of greater things to do, which he hasn’t yet even started. He has lots of books in mind, to write. He is in the midst of preparing to start a weekly television teaching program, so he can reach more people with less travel. He is also planning to set up a mini-studio in our basement, where he can record DVDs of teachings for our partners.

As you can see, he has no intention of stopping. He is getting ready to do even more, but at the same time, to try to stay home more than before – less travel. His intention is to try to make every trip “count” more than before – to get the most out of every trip.

Dwayne is presently working to secure television interviews in every city where Mark speaks, so that while he is away, he is not only speaking in churches and business conventions, but he will also take advantage of any available opportunities to share his message through television interviews, and any other means possible.

I know that I’ve already said it, but again, I want to say “Thank You” to all of you who have already sent in your generous seed to help us at this time. We appreciate it more than you know. As you might imagine, the knowledge that our partners are continuing to support the ministry during this “season” has served to encourage Mark, and relieve any stress he may have had about the ministry’s financial support.

To those of you who will sow a seed as a result of this e-mail, I thank you as well.

Again, I want to make it very clear that I AM asking you to give. That’s right. I know that Mark has promised not to, but I didn’t make that promise, and based on what our mentor, Dr. Mike Murdock, told us, I am submitting to that authority and asking – for the first time. If that offends you, please forgive me. But please understand that I am doing all I know to do to help my husband get strong so he can get back out there and keep changing lives.

Remember, if you wish to give, you can:

Visit the “Sow A Seed” section of our online Store at www.markgorman.com

Call during office hours, to speak to one of our ministry team members at 866-663-2043.

Or, write to:
Mark Ministries, Inc.
2000 Mallory Lane
Suite 130-347
Franklin, TN 37067

Please keep believing with us for Mark’s complete and total healing. God’s Word says that Mark is already healed. We confess that over him, and declare that God’s Word is true, and the devil is a liar. Regardless of how he feels, Mark is healed. Keep believing with us.

And for those of you who are facing your own challenges, whether they are physical, financial, emotional, spiritual or mental, we encourage you to reply to this e-mail with your prayer request, so we can pray with you for your miracle too. God is no respecter of persons. He doesn’t love Mark any more than He loves each and every one of you. We are believing with all of you for your miracle too.

Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

PS: As you know, in my last e-mail I asked you to refrain from trying to make contact with Mark during this time, per the doctor’s orders, for him to refrain from all e-mail and telephone communication. We had first thought that it would only be for a week or 10 days. After realizing how much more difficult this whole process has become for Mark’s physical body, the doctor has extended his directive regarding e-mail and telephone communications until further notice. He also directed us to cancel plans to attend the wedding of a dear friend, in Chicago, this week. I know this may seem extreme, but the doctor said that Mark’s muscles have been in constant spasm – severe spasm – for most of his life. He explained that in order for him to begin the healing process, we must release the spasm, even temporarily. We must do all we can to remove all stressors from Mark’s life, for the time being. Beginning this weekend, Mark will resume his travel schedule, to speak at a large business convention. But even on that trip, the doctor has directed him to leave his cell phone and e-mail turned off. I can only imagine how many e-mails will be awaiting his reply when we get home from this trip. Thank you in advance for understanding.
 


 

April 25, 2006

Dear Friends and Ministry Partners,

I’m sure that most of you are aware of Mark’s health challenges. He has idiopathic scoliosis (curvature of the spine). He has been in severe chronic pain for most of his adult life. He has been to countless chiropractors and doctors all over the world. Last April, our chiropractor in the New Orleans area suggested that Mark get an MRI to find out exactly what is going on in his spine, that may be missed with regular x-rays.

The results of that MRI explained why the pain was so intense. We discovered that he has 9 herniated discs, 8 bulging discs and 15 compressed discs. Any doctor who views his MRI tells him it is a miracle that he can even walk. (Most of the people who have this severe of a spinal problem will have a pronounced “hump” or twist in their spine, or will even be in a wheel chair. Because Mark’s spine has curved back the other direction, to compensate, he actually has twice as many bad discs. Many people who have the pronounced spinal disfigurement have told Mark that they have no pain. The doctor has explained that Mark’s pain is much worse than most people who have the obvious spinal curvatures to only one side.)

Mark has been believing for God to give him a miraculous healing, since he was first diagnosed with scoliosis at age 12. We have not given up on a miracle. Mark has not let this pain stop him from fulfilling the destiny God has for his life.

Last year, the pain became so intense, that Mark went to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota seeking help from one of the most respected health institutions in the United States. Those doctors only explained how great a miracle it is that Mark walks and functions the way he does. They gave him no hope for an answer, from medical science. They said that none of their surgeons would touch him, and that his condition and pain levels will only worsen with age.

You know that Mark is not a quitter. He doesn’t accept “no” for an answer. For any of you who are just now finding out about Mark’s health challenges, I’m sure you are in shock at learning this for the first time. You are probably asking yourself, “Is she talking about the same Mark Gorman that I saw on stage at a business function, or on a Christian TV program, or as a guest speaker at my church?”

The answer is YES! There is only one reason you are shocked by this revelation – that’s because Mark refuses to let his health challenges stop him from doing the things he’s committed to do. He doesn’t sit around whining that life has been unfair to him. Nor does he sit around questioning God, saying, “If you really are the God who answers prayers and performs miracles, why hasn’t my healing become a manifestation in my physical body?”

The Mark you know takes a step of faith to believe God for a miracle every time he packs his suitcase to get ready for a trip to go and speak. The Mark you know is also too stubborn to stay at home and “nurse his wounds”, the way the doctors have told him he probably should. The Mark you and I know is a man who knows he has a destiny, and he won’t let anything keep him from fulfilling that destiny, no matter what the odds may be.

This is the Mark you and I both know and love. Through Mark’s teachings, he has given so many of you the courage to face impossible odds and come through victorious, because you believed him when he told you, “Don’t let anything steal your dreams”. You are now finding out why he is such an effective motivator. It’s because he practices what he preaches. He is not speaking out of theory when he tells you “You can make it, if you just don’t quit”!

He faces the impossible each time he leaves home to go on a trip. The doctors have told him, besides being a miracle that he can even walk, it is like a quadruple miracle that he travels the way he does to fulfill his destiny. He should not be physically able to do the things he does daily! Mark is a real man! He won’t accept excuses for quitting, even when it’s his own doctors telling him that he has an excuse to quit.

I am so proud that he is such a strong leader. It breaks my heart to see him “collapse” once he’s off stage, or once the TV cameras are turned off. He keeps going and he does what he has to do, but then it takes its toll on him physically.

We understand that part of Mark’s miracle is the fact that he functions the way he does. However, it is becoming increasingly more difficult for him to continue at the pace he has been keeping. As a last resort, Mark has been going to a pain clinic, in hopes to relieve some of the pain he lives with daily.

Since last July, when he started treatment at the pain clinic, Mark has found that the medications they prescribed have made him very ill. Although they relieve some of the pain, the medicines cause other negative side effects. This has resulted in Mark being sick much of the time. He has unintentionally lost weight in the past few months. Mark has more bad days than good days. At times, he has been so ill from the pain medications that he could not even travel.

At Mark’s insistence, the doctor switched him to a different medicine about 3 months ago. At first, it seemed to improve, but then, it was downhill again. He has been functioning at about 35% of what he used to be able to do.

After moving to the Nashville area, following Hurricane Katrina, we learned that it is not very easy to just go into a pain management clinic as a new patient. A dear friend pulled all the strings he could, and got Mark an appointment with a doctor who is highly respected by the medical community here.

Last week Mark had his first appointment with the doctor and his staff. Mark told them that the first thing he wants is to stop taking the medicines that make him so ill. Second, he wants to try other pain relief methods which do not involve taking so much medicine – hopefully no medicine at all.

They have suggested some different treatment protocols. Tomorrow Mark and I are going to meet with the doctor and his staff. At that meeting we will learn their plans for this week. At the doctor’s recommendation, Mark has asked our staff to reschedule his speaking and travel engagements to allow him to stay home for the next 2 weeks. We aren’t exactly certain of what to expect, but we are hopeful that this will bring Mark some needed relief.

When Mark met with the doctors last week, they were very clear about the fact that Mark’s condition will require several more of these “time out” periods, in order for them to be able to treat him properly for the “long haul”. They are hopeful that they can help him, and that eventually, they can alleviate much of his pain. But Mark must be prepared to reduce his overall travel schedule from now on, and that we must be prepared to create “gaps” in Mark’s schedule, to allow for the treatments which will be necessary, in order for him to be able to continue traveling and speaking for many more years.

Recently a doctor used the example of the year Mark was born. It was 1957. He said, “If you had a 1957 Chevy today, you could do one of two things: You could either drive it a little each month, and maintain it carefully, so that it would last a long time. Or, you could drive it really hard and fast for a brief period of time, and then, it would collapse, because it couldn’t go on.”

He explained that if Mark keeps traveling non-stop, with no “down time”, he can do it for a few more years, but not forever. His recommendation instead was that Mark should reduce his travel schedule, and take better care of himself (maintenance), so he can have more productive years.

Again, we are believing God for Mark’s healing. But until the healing is manifested in his body, Mark must do what he can to continue functioning, pursuing the destiny that God has for him.

As you know, Mark has made a strong commitment to our partners that he will NEVER ask you to give to our ministry. The way he sees it, if he has to ask you to give, then you would be giving alms, rather than sowing seed. Also, growing up in church, Mark has become weary of hearing preachers asking for money. So for more than 10 years, he has lived up to that commitment, to never ask any of you to give to our ministry.

Well, in keeping with Mark’s wishes, I’m not going to ask you to give to our ministry. But as a concerned wife, who loves and admires her husband, and knows that he needs this time off to heal, I am coming to you, our friends, asking you to pray.

As you know, it is Mark’s public speaking that brings in the financial support for this ministry, and our ministry staff. We do not have any promise of income for the times that Mark must stay home for these treatments.

Mark took this step of faith, the minute the doctor told him that he needed time at home for this treatment, and the healing process. Mark didn’t call our office to ask how much money is in the bank, or to ask which bills need to be paid. He simply took a step of faith, and shifted his travel calendar, with no intention of asking anyone to give us a penny.

Again, out of respect for Mark’s commitment to never ask you to give, I am not asking you to give either. I’m only asking that you pray for Mark at this time, and if God speaks to you to sow a seed – not alms – but a seed – because you believe that this ministry is good soil, then you can use one of the following:

Visit the “Sow A Seed” section of our online Store at www.markgorman.com

Call during office hours, to speak to one of our ministry team members at 866-663-2043.

Or, write to:
Mark Ministries, Inc.
2000 Mallory Lane
Suite 130-347
Franklin, TN 37067

As Mark always says, no one should EVER feel ANY pressure to give to our ministry. If you give, it should be only because you believe in this ministry, as good soil, and you have faith that God will bring harvest into your life.

All I will say is that we trust God, and we appreciate all of you for your love and support.

Mark and I believe that our best days are ahead of us. We have not allowed this physical challenge to steal our dream.

Mark is definitely the kind of person who can get a message to Garcia. He’s not a quitter, and he holds himself to his own standard of excellence.

It was difficult for Mark to come to the place that he would even share publicly about his challenges – the challenges that he has been facing for 36 years. He bravely confronted them for most of his life without ever saying a word about it from stage.

He’s still a fighter, and a champion. Don’t think that he is weak, just because he is taking this time-out. He considers this time as an investment in our future – to make him better and stronger for tomorrow. It’s part of the journey – to excellence.

Please believe with us for a miracle. Although we are following the doctor’s advice, we are also continuing to believe God for Mark’s healing. Nothing would make us happier than to be able to tell all of you that the battle is over, and Mark’s spine is completely healed – no pain. But until then, Mark will keep on fighting, and you and I will keep on praying for him – to win.

Sincerely,
Gina Gorman

PS: As a loving wife, could I ask you a favor. Unless it is an emergency, please try not to call Mark or send him e-mails with lots of questions for him to answer, in the next couple of weeks. We’re trying to get him to just rest. Thank you for understanding. (E-mails of encouragement would definitely be appreciated, as long as he doesn’t have to reply to lots of questions. I’m trying to “force” him to rest.)

 



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