‘Remember?’

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“Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember?”

Mark 8:18 ESV

That word of Jesus leaps off the page to me, ‘remember.’

And His question comes back to me ‘And do you not remember?’ every single morning… how could I ever forget???

I hear You, Lord! I DO remember, vividly…

August 27, 2011… a day our family was forever changed… a day that marked us- and defined our faith.

Now, today, 8/27/18, it’s been 7 years, and I still stand amazed at what my God has done, and continues to do, each and every day.

Let me tell ya!

Because of what we went through, going from death to life, with the power of our tongues ONLY because of Jesus, and speaking the Word of God over our daughter, she is fully healed and alive today.

She’s married, (3 years this December), a registered nurse, and serving the Lord in the Peace Corp in Zambia with her husband Asa, declaring the marvelous deeds of the Lord- making a difference every day in the lives of others.

We have a deeper, stronger faith. We went through the flood, ‘the valley of the shadow of death’ literally, and our roots are firmly established in the revelation of a Father who never leaves us. NEVER.

We came through the ‘valley of the shadow of death’, when we emerged out of the deep end, and we have an awareness of God‘s abiding presence that forever changes the way we see impossible situations. NO one can tell me a situation is impossible when God’s involved, because I know otherwise!

Don’t ever settle for less than what God redeemed us from! Nothing is impossible with my Jesus!

God.

He was in the van with us. He was our ‘ever present help in our time of need’.

The moment we cried out ‘JESUS! Jesus, Jesus!’ He was right there, working on our behalf.

He sent His Holy Angels, who navigated my husband out of a treacherous situation… from the drivers seat, through a crushed door and broken window, glass everywhere… across LIVE POWER-LINES, in the pouring down rain- the Angels protection shielded him from harm, assisted him in getting her unbuckled and out of the pinned position of being sandwiched between the rear of her seat and the roof of our crushed van, over the the passengers side where both her Heavenly Father and her Daddy waited.

“Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, Lord, for you are with me. Your shepherd’s rod and staff protect me.”

Psalm 23:4 GNTD

Honestly, when the tree fell suddenly on top of our van while we were driving, only five minutes from home… we were thrust into total darkness. The span of the tree so big, it covered our van… and the shield of our eyelids when we were thrown into unconsciousness also was utter darkness.

When my husband awoke first, his first instinct was survival and protection. Searching frantically for a cell phone to call 911, realizing the gravity of our situation he attempted to wake me, ‘WENDY! WENDY!’ he hollered my name multiple times. I seemed to hear him as if in a dream, with his voice sounding far away, though he was sitting right next to me…

My hand went to my head and neck, exploding in pain… then I heard these words:

“MORGANNE’S NOT BREATHING!”

These words reached into the depth of my darkness, my eyes flew open, heart was shocked into beating…dazed, seeing broken windshield and tree limbs covering us, trying to move my body around towards where our daughter was sitting, and then seeing her there… lifeless, like a rag doll, long arms and long hair hanging over side of seats edge alongside her knees…with the rear of her seat folded on top of her, the roof of the van pinning on top of her-I instantly was gripped by a level of fear and panic I never experienced before in my entire life!!! A sight forever branded on my heart and in my mind- not a day goes by that I don’t ‘see’ that gut-wrenching image…

I knew I needed to speak but the enemies grip on my throat was so tight it seemed literally impossible.

BUT GOD!!!

The power of the living Christ within me through my Helper, the Holy Spirit, arose a mighty spirit of faith. In fact, the very same power that raised Jesus from the dead was activated in me-and I cried out ‘Jesus!!! JESUS- HELP MY BABY GIRL!!’

As I twisted in my seat, I reached out my hand and touched her pulse, on her neck and wrist. THERE WAS NO PULSE! NO HEART BEAT!

Words of LIFE, God’s Word, started flowing off my tongue, guided by the Holy Spirit, as I laid my hands on her- ‘Morganne will live and NOT DIE, and shall give account of the deeds of the Lord! It is written! When believers lay hands on the sick they SHALL recover! We resist you Devil! We submit to God, you MUST FLEE! Go! Leave her alone! She will live and not die in Jesus Name!’

And we prayed in the Spirit, kept saying ‘Jesus! Life! Help our baby girl! JESUS! LIFE!

6 minutes from when we found the phone and called 911, she remained unchanged…Lifeless.

But our God breathed life back into her, by HIS Words we uttered over her.

She started to breath. And rescue arrived… they pulled her out of the narrow opening on the passenger side of the van; no time for jaws of life or crane to remove tree…

And took her to the emergency room. Praise God for first responders!!! We do, all the time!

Throughout our ordeal, a total of 13 initial days in two hospitals-finding out of her massive blood loss and brain bleeds, fractured skull, multiple hematomas and subdermal bleeds, major brain damage on both lobes and brain stem, hearing the words ‘1-5% chance of survival with little to no quality of life if she makes it’ , emergency ground medic transfer to MCV during the height of Hurricane Irene, followed by a 9 hour brain surgery then hooked up to life support for three days… we held tight to God’s Word and each other.

Our son and older daughter with us, we kept praying and speaking God’s Word of life over her. A nightmare for each one of us…only we ALL were living in the same one.

We fought the good fight of faith. We refused the reports we were hearing and only believed God’s. We kept on saying she would fully recover and that it would be expedient. Nothing else was acceptable. It didn’t line up to what we believed, and we believed GOD.

On the third day, she awoke, though her journey of recovery and HER fight of faith was just beginning.

It was soooo hard seeing her in pain! Seeing her swollen beyond recognition; all of her long beautiful hair, gone- replaced by vicious staples across half of her head… all a testament now of the incredible God we trust in and serve, and of her amazing strength.

Fighting severe pain, inability to see in one eye, unable to walk, she kept saying ‘I need to run!’ Even though she couldn’t even yet stand. Doctors and nurses told her ‘honey you need to understand that you have a severe brain injury. You can’t do what you used to be able to do. This is what having a traumatic brain injury is about, it’s for life, this is your new normal.’

Our feisty girls response? ‘Will you stop telling me what I can’t do when my God says I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength?!’

On the 13th day, against all odds, our daughter WALKED out of MVV to our vehicle, on her own two feet! She refused the wheelchair. Of course she refused it- she was making a statement without words, she didn’t need it!

The next day, she surprised her team at an invitational run; and on the way home stopped at the storage yard where the wreckage of the vans remnant remained… seeing her standing there, looking at the van, I knew we were looking at what a miracle looks like. Another image branded forever on my heart…

Two weeks later after intense physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy, and lots of prayer, she returned for a consequent brain surgery to reattach her bone after swelling went down… and after another five days of intense pain, and hospitalization at MCV, she was home again.

And, one month after original accident on September 30th, she returned to school- to all her advanced and AP dual enrollment college classes, and that afternoon?

Morganne ran with her cross country team!!! I’ll never, ever forget it.

The power of the tongue… Like a rudder on a ship- it’s so tiny in size yet it powerfully steers the direction of our lives by the words off our lip.

When we line up our words with God’s Words- life will always follow.

“What you say can preserve life or destroy it; so you must accept the consequences of your words.” Proverbs 18:21 GNTD

“Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose.”

Proverbs 18:21 MSG

This year is bittersweet, as we always commemorate this day with an anniversary dinner to honor God and thank Him for saving us, and for restoring our daughter back to life, miraculously… but with Morganne being thousands of miles away across the world from us, we will celebrate in two separate time zones, and in two parts of the world.

We will always remember, Jesus, what You’ve done for us. We will tell the world of Your goodness every opportunity we have-

‘We overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the words of our testimony’. (Revelation 12:11)

If I could encourage one person not to give up by ‘remembering’ and sharing what Jesus did for us, then our trial has been worthwhile.

Jesus Himself tells us in Mark 11:22, ‘Have faith in God.’ We live by faith., and never stop thanking Him for the incredible things He has done.

We remember…

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2 thoughts on “‘Remember?’

  1. Cheryl Riley

    I personally witnessed this child’s academic performance in college and of all the students I have ever taught she was the brightest and most dedicated. She blessed my life and encouraged my walk with the Lord.

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