Thursday, April 3, 2008
I once died of a heart attack. Really. I know my stories sound unbelievable, but it is true. I have a heart defect. It is called Wolfe Parkinson White Syndrome. It causes your heart to speed up to dangerous levels, then starts skipping beats leaving you in danger of stoppage of the heart altogether. Then the heart will slow down to dangerous levels, then sometimes stop. This one is dangerous because when the heart stops it does not start on it's own. I used to have these horrible chest pains that would drop me to the floor in agony. My friends would just stand by and watch and hope it goes away soon as I writhed, because I needed for no one to touch me when I was in this pain. There is nothing more frustrating than when you are in serious pain and someone asks you if you are OK, which is why Jesus' response to the cross is so amazing...the very thought of forgiveness in that kind of pain, the way He was still focused on others while inside Him was agony. One day, my heart stopped. I lost all involuntary body functions, in other words, I crapped my pants. I was sitting at the table only weeks after giving my life to Jesus and it just stopped. I was dead. Then my eyes opened. My heart started. The heart does not start again by itself. Period. Ever. But then my heart started. The hand of God, the breath of life given again. I remember opening my eyes and thinking how ironic it was that I was saved from suicide, but here I am dying a couple weeks later, yet I still breathe. I spent a week in the hospital, the youngest person there by 55 years. In my shared room, I had 4 roommates, 3 of whom died while i was in there. I was lying next to 3 guys that died in front of me and I was alive. God is different, He is strange, God is wonderful and full of surprises. My heart by the way was just 2 weeks ago deemed normal after 11 years of irregular EKGs. God repairs even what we break. I am sure that all of my drinking and smoking and lack of sleep and everything else I was into had something to do with the problem. The doctors labeled me a mystery, which is to date my favorite thing that has ever been said to me, number two would be this: "People like you make me scared about the world." It was posted in one of the comments on one of my blogs. My wife wonders why I find this complimentary. Because God is is mysterious and does things we can't understand, and what we don't understand scares us. So if that guy saw that in me, I am thrilled. God cures heart defects whether they are physical or spiritual.
I'm a simple person to figure out. I usually write it all down here. I try not to pretend to be anything. I am what I am and that's good enough until it's not anymore. I want my kids to remember me smiling when I'm gone. Integrity is the very basis of a good life. I love my God, my wife, my kids, my friends, and I try to love all of the rest of you.