An Inspiring Story of Faith and Asking for the Right Things.
I was inspired by the story below written by Grace Rosenberger, and it's my wish that you be inspired too. It shows that your frame of mind has great power over you and that obstacles are but a stepping stone for planting your feet on solid ground. You can be an overcomer of discouragements by letting Jesus take over your life. When I was 17 years old, I fell asleep while driving and crashed my car. For the next 3 weeks, I was unconscious and in critical condition. When I awoke from the coma, I managed to mumble a question even though my jaws had been wired shut. "Did I hurt anybody?" "You were alone in the car when you fell asleep and hit a cement abutment - head-on." I had internal injuries, and almost every bone from my waist down was crushed. I lay flat on my back in traction for weeks. During that time, I had a lot of time to think about my life and my faith. I questioned if either was still intact and if I believed what I learned about God in childhood. My faith began when Holocaust survivor Corrie ten Boom told me about God's love. She and her family rescued many Jews during the Nazi occupation of Holland. Eventually Corrie and her family were imprisoned in a concentration camp. Corrie survived and wrote their story in a book, The Hiding Place. This amazing woman not only survived the pain and hardships of the camp; she came out of it all with an even stronger faith. Over the years, my faith grew, but laying in the hospital bed, I secretly wondered if my body or faith could survive this terrible ordeal. However small my faith, I did slowly improve. In fact, 2 years and a couple of dozen surgeries later, I returned to college where I met Peter, and we married in August of 1986. Yet, I lived in denial about the severity of my injuries and the excruciating pain I dealt with constantly. This denial allowed me to live in a fantasy world where I believed marriage would somehow fix my body and take away my pain. When the marriage didn't fix anything, I was sure that having children and my first record deal as a singer would somehow make right all the things that were wrong and too painful for me. In the next few years, I did have two beautiful children, and my singing career did take off. Yet, the deterioration of my legs continued. As the number of surgeries increased, Peter slipped more and more into the role of my caregiver, but his role as my husband was pushed more and more in the background. There seemed to be no love in our home, and I searched throughout the Bible for some justification that would release me from my marriage. Praying for a miracle time and time again, I wanted to wake up one morning with perfect legs, with no more scars and no more pain. It didn't happen, and even after 50 surgeries, I didn't get better. In order to walk, I used crutches or a cedar cane my dad had made for me. Our house was not equipped for a wheelchair, so when I had blisters from using crutches or when the pain just got to be too unbearable for me to walk, I crawled. When Peter saw me crawling from room to room, he became even more angry. I related my physical pain to the emotional pain of our marriage. I thought, if I get out of this marriage, my physical pain will ease. I became depressed, and Peter became angrier. Finally, after years of struggling, Peter and I gave up. I prayed, "Lord, if you want me to stay married to this man, You have to give me a change of heart concerning everything about him and our marriage." I had no idea that Peter was praying for a change of heart also in order to stay with me. The change of heart did come - for both of us. God chipped away at the wall I had built to protect myself from Peter's anger. God led Peter in rediscovering my good points, the very attributes that had caused him to fall in love with me when we first met. We stopped blaming God and blaming each other. We began to understand that God had already given us hearts full of love for each other. We knew that what was needed was for us to be willing to give and receive that love as a gift. All of this did not happen overnight, but it did happen. Slowly, over time, the anger and depression lifted. Now, I can honestly say, the real miracle my soul needed was not the physical kind, but of the heart. Part of the result of that change of heart was my decision to lose my legs. I had battled for so long to save them, but when I gave them up, my life greatly improved. I have wonderful state-of-the-art Flex-Foot prosthetic legs that enable me to do more than I ever dared dream of doing with my damaged legs. I now ski, jump on the trampoline with my sons, and maintain a national speaking and singing schedule. And I am learning to rock climb. I still have to put my legs on every morning and take them off every night, but when I do, I am reminded of how grateful I am to lead an active life that is filled with love. I certainly don't want to go through all I have gone through again, but I am exceedingly thankful for what I learned about faith and life, and for what I have discovered in my marriage and family life. All this happened because Peter and I asked God for a change of our hearts. Sherry