The sun is streaming into the kitchen. I watched it come up over Mount Mansfield this morning. Our back yard looks over a line of majestic Vermont mountains, a constant reminder to me of how God took me through the valley and placed me on a mountaintop where I am Free At Last. Each day I am totally overwhelmed by God’s lavish love.
On March 31st, 2014, our world was turned upside down when my husband, Peter, was given the “opportunity” to resign from his job in New York City. It was a kick-punch to the stomach for all of us, especially because it was right around bonus time—a typical “trimming time” on Wall Street, but it was still difficult to believe because Peter had poured out his very soul for that company. “Incredulous,” “wrong,” and “unjust” were words that immediately popped into my head. I was incensed, to say the least. The “warrior wife” inside me wanted to march in to their offices and throw my anger and frustration at them, full force. But to be honest, the light in Peter’s eyes had been growing dim over the past few years. The dog-eat-dog Wall Street world was getting to him. He was no longer being filled, only drained.
Fourteen days after this shocking news, our son Trent was nearly killed when he and his friends were playing a dangerous game at a nearby construction site. As they swung from a rope attached to a scaffolding apparatus, a sharp piece of metal—nearly five feet long and weighing forty-five pounds—fell from almost fifty feet up and hit Trent directly on the head, slicing it open.
It was total chaos. Trent immediately had a grand mal seizure and began foaming at the mouth, as blood poured from his head. One of his friends ran to get us. Peter immediately called 911, and Chase, who wants to be a doctor, had the presence of mind to grab a towel to stop the blood flow. I ran, not feeling my feet, and when I saw our son, I skidded to a halt on my knees beside him.
Chase held Trent’s head together as best he could; the towel was soaked in seconds. As I knelt at Trent’s feet, all I could do was pray and the only words that came out were “Jesus, please.”
Heads turned and stared as the siren wailed through the familiar neighborhood. It was almost impossible to comprehend that just an hour before, I had walked our dog on this very road without a care in the world. I thought to myself, Life is so fleeting, so unpredictable.
In the ambulance, I sent a text to the prayer team at Trinity Church. The words in my brain collected into more prayers and I was grateful to know that other prayer warriors were together with me in this.
And then the most amazing thing happened. In that ambulance, I surrendered; gave everything over to God, including my son. My thoughts were richly flavored with total trust. I knew that whatever happened, God loved him. It was then that the peace that passes all understanding penetrated to my very core. It was so profound that when I think about it, I can still experience the memory of it in my mind and body now.
Trent’s head wound was so bad that the hospital had been alerted. When we arrived at the emergency room door, a team of doctors was waiting for him. They swarmed the gurney and whisked him away as I squeezed his leg one last time, shouting, “I love you.” I was numb as we were escorted to a room in the hospital to wait. Time ticked slowly by as Peter, Chase and I held one another. No words, just hope.
When the doctors finally returned, we nearly fell to the floor as they informed us that Trent’s skull was totally healed and that he had no sub dermal hematoma. They would keep him overnight, but they felt certain that he would be fine. Trent awoke the next morning saying “Mom, I need to get out of the hospital. I need some chicken nuggets.” I smiled in awe. My son was back. My habit of cringing at his preference for the greasy, pressed poultry product was washed away in that moment. I laughed and thought, Chicken nuggets, here we come! Trent had survived the un-survivable.
And while we will never know exactly what happened or how God saved him, what we do know is that Trent is fully alive; and that fact is purely and simply an extraordinary miracle.
Phillippians 4:6-7 (NIV)
“6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
“It’s our faith that activates the power of God.” Joel Osteen
Don’t give up before the miracle happens.”
― Fannie Flagg,