For the ones who want the short version; God answers prayers and I’m still here.
For those who want the full account… here it is. It took about three years to retrieve the entire memory of that day’s activity but it all is crystal clear now.
Wednesday, May 26, 1971. This day will go down in the books as a day God showed himself again mighty to save and deliver. It was during the final exam week at the end of my sophomore year. I had a break before my next test on Thursday. My dad had some painting work and I needed some money so I went to work. After being given our morning work assignment of painting the awnings on the house. Mr. Taylor and I split the work, he on the top rails and me on the bottom. Paint ready and then it happened…my first step in the border grass and I felt something crawl across my foot… SNAKE!!! I’m running up the steps onto the porch with my heart racing. Taylor was having a ball laughing because of the speed I moved to get away from the snake. The snake was a young rattler about 12 to 18 inches long. I guess I startled it as much as it frightened me. It crawled out further in the yard and just waited. Now what do we do? Let’s kill it.
The homeowner was in the house. We told her about the snake and we asked for a hoe or shovel to kill the snake but she was unsure whether she had one and if she did, it was under the house, locked and she had no knowledge of where the key was to unlock the door to the crawl space. So Taylor found a stick.
Now I know better than to mess with a snake especially one that is poisonous but Taylor, a much older man, was feeling mischievous. He decided to “tease” the snake, which was still in the middle of yard, by poking at it’s head and nose. When the snake had enough, it crawled into it’s striking posture head poised to strike the stick. “ Oh, so you mean business huh ?” Taylor said. All kidding came to an end and Taylor killed the snake. The rest of the day, I was teased about the snake and how fast I could move.
Lunchtime was my time to pick up the lunch and I saw a longtime friend and absentee brother from the church who promised to come by the house later that evening so that we could talk. But back at the house, Dad and Taylor were trying to kill a scorpion that was crawling on the warm side of the house.
Whew!! What a day.
Two o’clock. Time to pick up my sister to take to work but first go pay a bill. Now why would anyone punch out the ones on a dollar bill? But that was part of the change given.
Anyway, I stopped by home to tell mom about the snake, the scorpion and Joel coming by later and to tell her that I was going swimming after I drop my sister off at work.
Man was it hot, no A.C.,… following this slow moving dump truck on S. Beltline and getting an early case of road rage but I kept it all in check. Mission accomplished…sister at work. Now to go cool off at the pool.
The park had an indoor heated swimming pool my brother, friends and I frequented especially during the winter months. You always had to sign in your name, age and telephone number before changing to swim. Unexpectedly on this spring day, the sides were opened but the top was still on. I asked the life-guard on duty “ who was there”? “ No one except about fifty cub scouts but they won’t bother you.” “Cool. I only want to cool off anyway. I won’t be in here too long.”
Bored? Ok now for the miracle part. I was swimming alone on my side of the pool, the lifeguard on his duty post and the cub scouts doing their thing and I remember thinking that it was time for me to get out of the pool to go meet Joel when suddenly everything went black. I lost consciousness and when I came to, I was on the bottom of the pool but I lost a lot of air. I forced my way to the top of the water but I drifted too far from the side and didn’t have the strength to swim to the side. I tried to get the lifeguard’s attention but he couldn’t hear me because of the noise of the cub scouts playing. Then the telephone in the pool’s office ranged and the lifeguard left his post to answer the phone. Now I’m really in trouble. Weak and drained, no air and too far away from the sides and I couldn’t get anyone’s attention. I felt the cool water rushing into my body engulfing me, filling everything and I couldn’t prevent it from happening. My final two thoughts before the blackness were: God is not going to let me drown and I called on the name of Jesus. Shudder…Blackness.
The next thing I heard was… “We got him back” as I felt water coming out of my mouth… blackness again.
“Where am I ? ” “ You’re in the Hospital, you went swimming and almost drowned” replied the nurse. “I didn’t go swimming” was my statement to her. My mind forgot the entire day.
The rest of the account took a while to remember and others told me their part of the as it related to them.
The lifeguard said that when last saw me, I was doing good swimming along well and the scouts were having fun when the telephone ranged. He was only gone for a moment when one of the cub scouts got out of the pool, ran to him and said that a man was lying down in the bottom of the pool. He got me out but could not revive me so he called the ambulance and called the telephone number the I gave when I signed in.
Meanwhile, Joel showed up at the house while the family was getting ready to go where dad was pastoring when the telephone call came concerning me.
Mom called my Grandma and others and the word went out to all the saints that I was in need of prayer. The unity of the saints was amazing. Folk said that they prayed and prayed fervently and did not stop interceding for me until they received word that I was alright. Others said that they prayed until they got confirmation from the Holy Ghost that I was alright. God answered His people’s prayers.
There is another part to this miracle.
The doctors told my mother that if I live at all, I would have brain damage. But as you can see…I’m still here. I stayed in the hospital for nine days six of them in intensive care but I had three amazing persons close at hand the entire time to comfort me: my mom, my church sister who was a nurse, (I still call her my guardian angel) and Jesus.
I’m still teaching school (37 years now), creating His music, and trying to share the story of the amazing love of God through my testimony.
Be Forever Blessed
There's one more part to this account but you must contact me directly to get the rest of the miracle.