When I was about five years old, I almost choked to death on a peppermint candy. Sister Mickey, my moms church friend, and prayer partner, didn’t hesitate to raise up my arm, tap me just right in the middle of my back, and force that mint right out. I remember that incident like it happened yesterday, mostly because it wasn’t the last time the devil tried to take my life. And, it certainly wasn’t the last time that God intervened.
By the time I was twelve, I had a brain that was always in constant thought. I would lay awake at night, nervously peeling the paint off my painted purple bedroom wall. Momma would be so mad the next morning when she saw the nonsensical designs I had carved into the wall. Oh, how those nostrils of hers would flare out, and the hollering, and fussing she would do. The more she would whip me, and repaint those walls, seemed like the more I stayed up at night thinking, and redesigning her work. She didn’t understand that I was nervous. I didn’t get how defiant I was coming across. Soon enough, Daddy got involved, and dared me to do it again. And, I didn’t want to be whipped by my Daddy.
One night, I put on a pair of the new pajamas Momma had bought for my sisters, and I. The pink, and yellow flowers were as cute as they could be. They were all soft, and girly. My two sisters were overjoyed. But, the straight pin I found wedged in the elastic waist band of my pair seemed far more appealing to me. When it first stuck me in my side, I fidgeted with it, digging at it so it wouldn’t jab me anymore. “Why would they put a pin right there? Stupid!” I thought to myself. I played with it, there in the dark, shifting it from finger to finger, and then I put it in my mouth. I remember holding it between my teeth, and thinking “I wonder how many straight pins were used to make these pajamas? “ I thought about it, and thought about it, but I couldn’t figure it out. But, I did figure out that I had swallowed that straight pin!
” Daddy!” I screamed, running into he, and Momma’s bedroom. “I swallowed a pin!”
I had jarred him out of his sleep, a usual “no-no”, but I was so scared. He shook his head, woke up my mother, and they took me to the emergency room. Nobody said a word the whole way there. I know they must’ve been aggravated, but I was petrified. And, come to find out, I had a good reason to be.
” If you look right here on the x-ray” the eerily thin doctor pointed towards an image of my heart. “You’ll see that the pin is lodged between her heart, and lung. It’s in a kind of weird position. We just have to hope that it works it’s way out. Otherwise, it could puncture something, and she could die.”
Momma gave me that look, the one that says “I’m tired of yo’lil behind!” And, I just started to cry. But Daddy looked absolutely unbothered.
The next night at church, Daddy had Momma bring me up to the altar for prayer. All the Elders came down from the pulpit, the smell of blessed Olive oil on almost every hand that was laid on me. The sisters of the congregation, their various perfumes assaulting my sense of smell, surrounded me, and begin to plead along with the preachers.
“The Blood of Jesus!”
As if I had just come off a too fast, too curvy rollercoaster ride, I started to feel dizzy.
“The Blood of JESUS!!”
The saints kept praying, and I went out, cold! I had fainted. When I came to, my palms all sweaty, my forehead glistening with blessed oil, and perspiration, I was so embarrassed. I just wanted to get off that altar, stop everybody from looking at me, and go home. But the saints just kept on praying, pleading the Mighty Blood of Jesus over my life. And, although I hadn’t realized it yet, God…had…moved!
The ride home was filled with Momma talking to Daddy about getting to the post office by midnight in order for her to make sure her Avon orders got mailed off on time. The utter nerve! My siblings were playing, and laughing, talking which houses we passed belonged to Batman&Robin, and I was still worried about the straight pin. I tried, with my adolescent brain,to catch on to enough faith to release it from my mind, but I was worried. And, it seemed I may have been the only on. Inside my little head I thought “What is going on? Hello? Didn’t you all just see me pass out? Dying, here!” But, they just went about life as usual. I silently lost my twelve year old mind.
“The prayers of the righteous availeth much”! The next day, when Momma took me to the follow up appointment for another x-ray, that straight pin was gone!
” Maybe it’s traveled somewhere else in her system” the doctor said, scratching at the bald spot in the middle of his head. “I thought for sure we’d be preparing for surgery. I…I just can’t explain it!”
Momma smiled. You could see the “Hallelujah!” all over her face. She, and Daddy had the faith that I didn’t have the strength to find.
He’s that kind of God to me today. The value in that lesson remains with me right now. And, that’s is why I choose Him. Because He chose me first! And, sometimes, we get weak; we get fearful. And, we find it extremely hard to stand on our own. We get worried, we get discouraged, and we just cannot seem to find the right amount of faith, sometimes. That’s human nature. That’s the devil working in the mind trying to make you believe that God is not who you believe Him to be. But, the devil is a liar! God moves in His own time; the right time! He shows up just when you need Him the most. He’ll leave you flabbergasted, and overjoyed, suprised, and amazed, because that is who He is. He doesn’t owe us a thing. But if you pray, and you ask, and you seek Him, diligently, God will deliver. When you’re too weak to pray for yourself, know that you’re not alone. Call upon the saints, and Elders to pray. That is why we fellowship. There is strength in numbers. God will move! And, you too will find that He is always right on time!