As I sit here considering how to begin this testimony, I struggle with a mixture of emotions. My experience was so personal, I want to guard it from those who do not know how to treasure it.
Once I write this down, what has been a private matter will be released into the public world and my treasure cannot be protected by me anymore. But the purpose of my experience has been to glorify the Heavenly Father, so with that in mind, I release my testimony. I will begin in the month of November 2011. This was when I noticed difficulty in getting enough air. It was not like I was congested in any way. I could take a deep breath but it did not seem as if I was getting enough air out of my breath.
The Sunday after Thanksgiving, my husband and I intended to take a ride down to Chattanooga, about an hour and a half away. A couple different factors turned our special date, into a road trip from hell. One thing was an exhaust leak. The other was being stuck in traffic for the majority of the trip and breathing in an extensive amount of fumes. I became very sick after this incident and became confined to bed. The following Sabbath (December 3rd), I woke up much sicker than I had been the previous week.
I said to my husband, “Do you think we need to go to the hospital?” This was quite a significant question for us, in that I had not been to a hospital or even a doctor in over 20 years. He said, “Let’s pray about what to do.” As we were praying, I felt led to read James 5:14 . I went to that passage and after reading it, I felt led that we should call the elders from our congregation to come pray for me. This made me uncomfortable because we live a good distance away from our elders and I did not want to interrupt their Sabbath rest. I asked my husband Tom if we could call the children in to our room, to pray as a family, to make sure this was really what we were supposed to do. We called them in and explained how sick I was and asked them to pray with us to see if they got the same answer about calling the elders.
After praying together, everyone was given the same witness that yes, we were to call the elders. Something else was revealed as we prayed. It was brought to our memory that, on that day (December 3rd) had been the due date of a son I miscarried seven years earlier. When the elders came to pray, they asked me first what was going on. I explained about having difficulty getting air and then getting sick after the car ride. Just before they started praying, I felt like I should tell them about when Tom, the children and I were praying earlier, it was brought to our mind about it being Yosef’s due date. The elders discussed this a little bit, then Jeff anointed me with oil and began to pray. As he prayed for my healing, I felt a physical change in my heart, almost as if part of it was turning over. At that point, I felt like I was healed. Since I was healed, my intention was to get going and carry on with life as usual.
The Heavenly Father and I were not on the same page with that plan. As I tried to go back to everyday life, there was one difficulty … I could not walk. So in the bed I stayed. At this point I can truly say that I spent some of the best days of my life enjoying the presence of the Heavenly Father. His joy and shalom overflowed me. But there were some times that were not so happy. Some times I started to wonder why I could not walk. I started looking up my symptoms on the internet; what I read took my peace and made me fearful. At these times, I would go back to the Heavenly Father and begin the questions and statements.
Here are a few examples: “Abba, if I was healed from the prayer of faith, why am I not walking?” “Abba, should I go to the hospital now?” “Abba, if I don’t get checked out and know what is going on, how can I explain to those who are asking?” “Abba, how long will this continue?” “Abba, maybe something really bad is wrong and if I do not get checked out now, I’ll be in a terrible way!” Each time I went to the Father about my questions and concerns, the answer was always the same “Wait on Me”. So wait I did.
He would also give me Scriptures to help me. Psalm 119:74,75 was a lifeline I clung to. “They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word. I know, O YHWH, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.” I also believe the Father showed me that this was a “Body Issue” that what was happening was not just for our family, but also for the Body of Messiah. I was not sure what that meant, but as you will read below, the Body of Messiah was involved in my healing.
We are now approaching December 23rd in the timing of this testimony. I had been bedridden just over three weeks. Like I wrote earlier, the majority of the time was wonderful, being snuggled up with my Heavenly Father. A big blessing was that when I was struggling with different things like loneliness, depression, discouragement etc … friends from our congregation and elsewhere would visit, call, send a card of encouragement, pray for me etc. Our Messiah’s body was ministering to our family in very real ways. So let’s go back to December 23rd. Our family had planned on going to a Chanukah conference that was being held at the Sheraton in Nashville. We borrowed a wheel-chair and my intention was to stay in the hotel room while our family participated in the activities. Tom and the children were participating in some of the presentation dances happening in the evening, so I was hoping to see those. My routine on the 23rd and 24th was to rest in the room during the day, then Tom would wheel me down to the conference room just before 7pm. I would watch the different dances (and enjoy them), then Tom would wheel me back to the room and I would collapse in exhaustion. Saturday night, Tom mentioned that Tony Robinson would be teaching on worship the next morning at 10am and he thought I should be there. I planned on going.
The teaching was good and afterward the Robinson family all donned different instruments and began a time of worship. How to describe what happened during this time of worship is extremely difficult to put into words. I heard the Father say “Stand”, so I asked Tom to help me stand. It was not easy. At one point I saw my friend LeGwen in front of me, so I called to her to help me stand. Tom released me into her arms and all of my weight weighed her down. There was a battle going on. My body struggled between being dead weight and then I started to support my weight. I am not sure how long this went on.
At one point, I felt like what could be described as shooting electrical shocks going throughout my body. This scared me and I thought to myself that I must be damaging myself by trying to stand and I needed to sit down. As I went to sit down, I heard the Heavenly Father say, “Keep standing”. So I did. All the internal shocking stopped in the majority of my body, but seemed to have gravitated to my left hand. By this point, I was supporting my own weight but the pain and shocks in my left hand were getting unbearable. It also seemed that my fingers were being crushed into my palms. I opened my eyes and saw my friend Eleanor on my left side. (On a side note, I found out later that there were a large number of ladies gathered around me praying). I cried out, “Eleanor, pray for my hand!” She started praying and the shocking pain alleviated. I know that some of this may sound strange or even hard to believe. It was pretty strange for me too! I had never experienced anything like this, but the Father was working things out in His way, in His timing. I wasn’t going to argue with Him.
Next, I heard Him say “Dance”. I asked the ladies helping me, to help me dance. With their support, I started “dancing”. It was extremely difficult. I am sure it did not look like dancing but we all gave it what we had. I gave all of my effort and the ladies around me physically helped me to move. After a little while, I was exhausted. I wanted to eat and drink and go to sleep. The ladies helped me back to the wheelchair and I asked Tom to take me to the room. As Tom was wheeling me away, our pastor Scott, got on the microphone and said if anyone needed prayer or ministry, to come forward. My initial thought was, “I just had a bunch of prayer and ministry; I’m going to bed.” But then I heard, “Go up front”. I said, “Honey, I think I’m supposed to go up front.” So up to the front Tom wheels me. Several sisters came and ministered to me. Then an elder from an out of state congregation mentioned to Tom that he ought to consider anointing my feet with oil. Tom thought this was good advice and he followed it. When he finished, Steve (the elder who spoke to Tom) said to me that I was healed by my husbands actions. For a second time, I thought I was supposed to stand up and dance, this time with my husband. I stood up with strength for the first time in almost a month and began dancing with Tom. After a few minutes, my strength was waning so I thought maybe I should stop; after all, I had been exerting a lot of energy and I really needed to rest. As I was considering this, I looked and saw Brother Lloyd standing beside Tom and myself.
He looked at me and said, “Dance”. “Dance?” I questioned. He nodded his head, so I continued to dance. It was exhausting but strengthening in an amazing sort of way. The time of worship drew to an end and our family went up to our room to have lunch. I was thoroughly exhausted and ready for a nap. Everyone except Tom left the room around 2:30pm to go to the afternoon activities. Tom, who had been up late the night before fellowshipping with some dear brothers in the lobby of the hotel, promptly fell asleep. I thought that I would also, but amazingly, I could not sleep. All the thoughts of what happened in the last few hours were going through my head.
Right about 3:00pm, I felt a strange sensation … I felt strength come back into my body … I felt that I was totally healed. As I lay there wondering what to do, I thought that I was supposed to get up and take a bath, so I did. By the time I got out of the bath, Tom was awake. I told him I thought I was totally healed and asked if I should walk down to the evening meeting? He said he was not sure and suggested I pray about what to do. After praying about it, I thought that since I was not confident that I could walk that far (I hadn’t walked in almost a month), I should go in the chair. I stayed at the evening meeting for much longer than the last two nights, but with all the day’s excitement, I was ready for bed about 10pm. Tom took me back to the room and returned to the children still at the meeting. Everyone returned close to midnight and Sister Carolyn stopped over also to drop off an extra pillow and blanket. By now I was fully awake and at the foot of my bed, Sister Carolyn was singing and dancing and saying, “Rise up!” I got laughing so hard at how she was dancing about with her curlers bouncing about. I finally said, “Sister Carolyn! I will rise up in the morning … now go to bed!” She laughed and out the door she went.
Early the next morning, I jumped out of bed. I danced about. I maneuvered around sleeping bodies, luggage, coolers, boxes of food etc. All my strength and balance had been completely restored! Praise Abba! We filled the wheelchair full of coats and miscellaneous items that needed to be taken to the car. I walked out of the room and down to the lobby and have never sat in the wheelchair again! As I bring this to a close, I want to share a word of encouragement. I am not sure why this situation happened to me, but one thing I hope I can remember is, that it is important to hold on to and do the things the Father asks us to do, regardless if it is hard or not.
On December 3rd, He said I was healed. When I trusted His Word despite what I was experiencing, I was filled with His peace and joy. When I questioned the reality of being healed, there was no peace. He told me to “wait”, “stand” and “dance”. Each one of these things was just about physically impossible but that was what He said to do. When I made the effort (even with the help of others), against logic, comfort or ease, He enabled me to do what He asked and blessed it.
He is faithful and I am grateful!