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A Story of God's Power: How God changed Jeff and Anne

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After smoking too much pot, Anne lost control of the truck at 60 mph. Neither of the two were wearing their seatbelts, and as the vehicle rolled several times, they were both thrown out of the truck at high speed. Thankfully, Anne only received a few minor injuries, but Jeff suffered a very shocking blow to his upper back and chest, breaking two vertebrae and damaging his spinal cord. He was instantly paralyzed from the chest down and in very rough shape. It's only by a miracle of God that he even survived. Jeff's condition quickly became even more critical. He experienced a major degree of chest trauma and was having severe breathing problems. On more than one occasion in the hospital including his initial back operation, he almost died from respiratory arrest, but the God of heaven was there keeping this undeserving young man alive!

But the devil wasn't ready to let go just yet. The next few days were very uncomfortable and difficult, both for Jeff and his family. At this point, his breathing was dependant upon a respirator and his lungs were constantly filling with fluid, which made the situation an extremely dangerous one.

To make things even worse, Jeff was under the influence of a variety of very potent medications causing him to hallucinate. Jeff that felt like everyone was trying to kill him! As the doctors were sticking tubes down his throat, up his nose, etc., all he could see were demons who were taking delight in his torture. "The only thing I wanted to do was die and get it all over with. I was that miserable. Satan wanted me in a bad way: I made it through the accident, the surgery was a close call, and it seemed he wasn't through with me yet; but as the Bible says 'greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world' (1 John 4:4). I praise God for that!"
The Truck

"The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned."

Matthew 4:16

In the hospital
The days went by and Jeff's situation was slowly getting better. He was able to breathe on his own and the medications began to wear off so that he could relax for the first time since the accident. From that point on, the Lord put a positive attitude in Jeff's heart and when most people expected him to be depressed and bitter, he was cheerful and just thankful to be alive.

He knew that God had spared his life and so he began to share this good news with everyone. All his friends and the nurses were amazed that this young man could be so happy after all that he'd been through. The doctors were telling Jeff that he'd never walk again, but he had the assurance that even though he may always be in a wheelchair in this life, he would one day have a new body in heaven, where he will be "walking, and leaping, and praising God." (Acts 3:8)

But the struggle for his life wasn't over. While still in the hospital about a month after the accident, Jeff started to feel horrible and he couldn't even get up into his wheelchair without getting sick. The doctors eventually discovered that the incision in his back was seriously infected. By that time, the infection had already spread into his urinary tract and blood. The doctors had to operate on his back immediately and Jeff was later told that he would have died from a bone infection if the surgeons had waited any longer.

After three months, Jeff was finally on his way home, but even though his lungs had been severely damaged in the accident, he had been sneaking out to smoke cigarettes and dope before he even left the hospital. And of course, Anne was no different. It's amazing how quickly we can forget about the Lord when we feel like we don't need Him anymore. But thank God for His patience and mercy, especially since Jeff didn't realize just how much he still needed God. Even though we may reject Jesus, He's always there with open arms to take us back in, no matter how many times we drift away and abuse His blessings.

"But in your great mercy, you did not destroy them completely or abandon them forever. What a gracious and merciful God you are!"

Nehemiah 9:31

Jeff a year after giving his life to God
As Jeff and Anne slipped back into their old ways, that infection began to wreak havoc once again in Jeff's life. Even the strongest antibiotics didn't seem to help, but instead, they only made him feel worse. Things just kept going downhill as this couple turned their backs on the Lord. Partying was again a way of life, but Jeff couldn't ignore the fact that his life was in danger. It was now a year and a half after the accident: the antibiotics weren't working and he felt like garbage most of the time.

One night, Jeff picked up a Bible (the same one that his parents had given him long ago, though he hadn't touched it in years) and cried out to God in desperation. A couple nights later, he popped in a video that Anne's mom had given them and his heart was warmed as he heard the man on the tape talk about Jesus and the Bible. After that, Jeff began praying and reading the Word of God, and it wasn't long before he surrendered his life completely to Jesus Christ. The Lord convicted him to quit smoking cigarettes and gave Jeff the power to follow through with it. It was more of a struggle to turn away from drugs and partying, but nothing is too big for God!

At first, Anne wasn't too excited about all these changes. Before long though, Anne started to feel Christ calling for her heart as well. She could see the happiness and joy in Jeff's life, while at the same time she felt empty. Her mother rejoiced to see her little Annie returning to her roots.

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