Monday, January 5, 2009

When I came to know Christ as my Savior is a long story ....

I have dealt with asthma since the age of 13. Back then all a doctor could do was give me cortisone and put me in the hospital until the attack eased up. I was in and out of the hospital many times from 1960 - 1979. Medications had changed over the years, but the asthma worsened. By the time 1979 arrived, I had a large oxygen tank in our bedroom and two machines to do breathing treatments. 1977 to early 1979 were some of the most difficult months of my life.

I had had two severe attacks in 1977, both of which put me into ICU for a while. I stopped breathing the first time and remember having a mask put over my face as a nurse pumped air into my lungs .. all the while I was being rushed from my regular room to ICU on the hospital bed. That episode lasted two weeks. I came home about 25 lbs. heavier than when I went into the hospital; I was swollen and didn't recognize myself when I looked into a mirror. Cortisone / prednisone is a good medication when it's needed, but the side effects can be treacherous.

A second severe attack happened a few months later and I again spent time in ICU. I began to wonder if I would die like that.

During all this, I knew I needed to get my life right with God, but I seriously didn't know how. I knew to call on Him, but I knew next to nothing about prayer; and since we didn't go to church, what was I to do? That was my thinking back then.

In early 1979 I was again taken to ER for another asthma attack and once again, I was admitted. This was nothing unusual, but there was something going on that I didn't understand. I learned much later that my oxygen level became so low I was "hallucinating" and the nurse called my husband to come back to the hospital. They called it hallucination, but I knew I was dying and I knew I wasn't ready and I was scared out of my mind.

My husband came; and then my brother George & my sister Kay. I was begging them to pray with me, to pray for me, and I felt absolutely lost when they couldn't. My sister asked if I wanted her to call a lady from her church and I said Yes! You must understand, at that time my sister Kay was just a young teen-ager and newly saved and most likely scared witless to see me in the shape I was in. And neither my husband or my brother were saved at that time. I didn't understand their reluctance to pray, but understanding did come later.

The last conscious thing I remember was a lady named Glenda holding my hand and praying for me. I don't remember her face, just her hands holding mine. I then slipped into unconsciousness and then into a coma. The first days (?) in the coma, I was in a very dark place ... it was a blackness unlike anything I had ever experienced and I felt as though I was wrapped in black velvet. I learned later that about a week later a minister friend of my parents came to see me. I remember his putting his hand upon my forehead and praying for me. When he finished praying, a voice spoke to me, inside of me and said "It's okay now, you can go to sleep." And I did sleep, on and off for the remainder of the time I was in the coma.

After that minister prayed for me, I began to see people and I tried my best to communicate. When family members noticed movement, they were told by nurses or doctors that it was simply a reflex, that I couldn't voluntarily move. I remember being hungry and wanting a vanilla milkshake. I craved ice water and orange juice. I remember a respiratory therapist being in my room just as a nurse brought in liquid nourishment. The therapist was talking to me and said "She's brought your dinner, we hope you're hungry." I laid there thinking "Finally! Food! I'm starved!" But nothing came. I then felt something cold inside my throat and realized I was being fed through a tube. I wasn't happy, but decided to pretend I was getting the milkshake I wanted that way.

During these two weeks of being in a coma, my family was being told that I wouldn't come out of it and if I did live, I would be in a vegetative state for the rest of my life. They said it would be best for my husband to consider taking me off of life support and 'let nature take it's course'.

On Good Friday I remember seeing my husband and my brother George standing at the foot of my bed. George held a single rose and he was reading to me from a card he had bought. Later that day I was moved from the local hospital to U of M so a CT scan could be done of my head ... to prove that I wouldn't recover. I remember part of the ride in the ambulance and the precious nurse who sat and held my hand and talked to me all the way there. She didn't know I could hear her, but I did.

On Easter Sunday, 1979, I began to wake up, to the utter amazement of everyone, I began to wake up and I wasn't a vegetable! I was so grateful to be alive and awake. It was on that day that I first heard the words "Be still and know that I am God" ... and they seemed as audible as any other voice. I was alone in the room and couldn't move anything but my head ... the respirator was still helping me breathe and I was paralyzed from the neck down. Those words were spoken twice more and then I realized it had to be God and He was talking to me.

I laid there and cried and asked Him to forgive me and let me live for Him. I told Him that if I never walked again, that would be alright, just please, don't ever leave me alone. I told Him I was sorry for every bad thing I had ever done. I told Him how grateful I was to be alive. And you know, in writing this, I remember that I didn't have much of a voice then either. I whispered those words because the respirator was breathing for me and when you're on one of those machines, talking isn't easy.

There is much more I could share, and perhaps one day I'll continue this story of how God not only saved me and let me live to go home to my sons and my husband ... He also allowed me to regain full use of this body and let me walk when doctor's said that was unlikely. He restored my vision and truly let me "see" for the first time in my life, what His grace looks like.

Easter is my favorite holy day ... I know what it is to be dying and not be ready ... I know what it is to be declared clinically dead and then be brought back to life ... I know the despair and the joy of Good Friday and Easter and I deeply appreciate our Savior and all He's done to make us His children.

I love Sara's post about her salvation and her healing, and I wished I could have had that ... but that wasn't my path to walk. That was for Sara and I'm happy for her ... she's a blessing to each of us. I thank her for doing these special posts this week .. we need to look back and remember and share where God has brought us from. We need to recall His blessings and tell them to all who will listen.

Thank you Sara ...
Thank You Lord....


  1. how could i have never known this story? i'm crying like i was there. thank you loo-eeth.

  2. You are a walking MIRACLE! Weezy,
    what a Testimony and what faith you had even before you were serving the Lord. God had a plan for your life and you have touched this gal many times!
    I love you Weezy.

  3. Our God is awesome. What an amazing story. I am reduced to tears....once His faithfulness.