A fall outside a diner | WORLD
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A fall outside a diner

God provided an incident in which His name was hallowed

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I had just conversed with Renee at the cash register and walked out to the car with my three gallons of water in hand, and next thing I knew I tripped and the whole right side of my head slammed into the bumper of a parked vehicle. The force of it told me my life as I knew it was over. I whispered Jesus’ name a few times. One of the plastic jugs had burst open in the fall, and I was lying in the gutter getting wet.

Which I only really noticed because now a small group of people who had been breakfasting on this sunny morning at the adjoining diner’s outdoor tables were saying, “Let’s get her out of the water.” One minute you’re having a conversation with the cashier, and the next minute everything in your world is changed forever.

By providence, one patron was a nurse. She snapped into nurse mode, which is always beautiful (who hasn’t fallen in love with a nurse as a patient in the hospital?), and sat me on the bench conveniently located inches from my car, asking a few questions: What year is it? What month is it? She helped me to the restaurant bathroom, and as I walked, the blood drained from my head and I heard someone say I had no color. I felt nausea but, strangely, no pain in the skull. My neck and shoulders were stiff.

One minute you’re having a conversation with the cashier, and the next minute everything in your world is changed forever.

I thanked the nurse and a waitress with piercing blue eyes and told them God had sent them. Once the nurse left the scene after my assurances that I would see a doctor—Lord, forgive me for that lie—I drove myself home and took to the sofa. My husband prayed. My father prayed. I lay there and waited for the dam burst of pain, the inevitable settling in of a lifelong paralysis that would be all the more horrible for its menacing delay.

It never came. After two hours I instructed my husband to lift my head slowly from the pillow. The result: It was as if nothing had happened earlier that morning. There was no ache of neck or limbs, not a trace of tenderness of scalp to indicate there had been impact. I made circles with my arms and turned my neck side to side, gingerly at first. Nothing. Ah, but what about tonight in bed? I slept unhampered. At daybreak while I was praising God, it entered my mind that I needed to go to the diner and give testimony. Like a certain leper long ago.

When I entered the diner the waitress with the piercing blue eyes was already coming to me, having spotted me through the window. I told her of my healing. I made sure to mention that it was in the name of Jesus, and not God generically. The owner, leaning over the counter, seemed relieved to see me well. Another waitress I had not noticed yesterday beamed at my naming of Jesus and agreed that He is great.

Upon leaving, I checked out the spot where I had tripped, and there was a protruding brick, so I called the township and suggested they fix it.

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). We also know that His purpose is that all men hear of His salvation. Early on the morning of the incident outside the diner, I had asked God that His name be hallowed, His kingdom come, and His will be done on earth. He had heard and answered.

My husband says I must be careful to remember in the months and years to come that I was healed by God. I said that if I ever should explain away this incident as anything but healing, I may as well admit I have no faith, and just be done with any pretense of religion.

Andrée Seu Peterson

Andrée is a senior writer for WORLD Magazine. Her columns have been compiled into three books including Won’t Let You Go Unless You Bless Me. Andrée resides near Philadelphia.


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