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Saved From Lightening

I had taken my son for a motorcycle ride on Sabbath to spend time with him. Unfortunately family situation was not what it should have been, so time was limited. We left phoenix and headed toward Prescott, Arizona via the old road. When we reached the top of Yarnell hill the weather turned wet and started to rain. We did not have wet weather gear so we turned around and went back down the mountain and headed back toward Phoenix via wickenberg.

Just as we were entering town there occurred a static discharge, lightning without thunder. I was the subject of that lightning. The lightning coursed up my body burning holes on my shoulder and exited through every button on my motorcycle helmet. Both of my tympanic membranes (eardrums) were blown out. There was a hole the size of a quarter burned through the insulation in my helmet where the lightning had arced between the nerve and the metal button several inches away. My grip tightened on the throttle of the motorcycle and we sped up. I slumped forward with my feet dragging on the ground. The people who picked us up said that motorcycle was all over the road. Gasoline was boiling out of the gas tank.

My son at fourteen was a prisoner on the back of the bike that he could not control. Eventually the motorcycle slowed down, stopped and fell over. Why didn’t we crash? With gasoline boiling out of the tank, why didn’t it explode? The temperature was quite worm. The motorcycle was hot. It was a perfect environment for a gas explosion. But it didn’t. My guardian angel must have been in control. Praise the Lord, His mercies endure forever.

As we passed one of the streets a pickup truck was waiting for us to go by. Those people had planned to go on their hunting outing at 2 pm. It was at least 2:30, & they usually were never went late. That day they were late. One of the people in the truck was a paramedic. When the lightning struck it stopped my heart and collapsed my lungs. I was in trouble and didn’t know a thing about it. Those people in the truck followed the motorcycle till it stopped and proceeded to give me CPR which I needed. They put me into the back of their truck and took me four or five blocks to the hospital ER. The door to the ER was locked and it took what seemed to them forever until the nurse came to open the door.

They told me that they just about broke the door getting attention. Eventually the nurse came to the ER and got me stabilized, then called the air ambulance out of Phoenix. The folks that picked me up said that the chopper personnel commented upon reviewing my chart that, “this guy is gone, why did you bother us?” During the flight to phoenix I was told that my heart stopped several more times. While in the ER at St Josephs hospital I remember being at a doorway of what I think was a bathroom. The male nurse astonished to see me out of bed yelled across the room, “Richard, get back into bed”. I was intent on going into that room and do not remember coming out.

I was lapsing in and out of 7 degree coma. It was thought that I might remain a vegetable, but after a week and a half I regained consciousness and didn’t have the slightest idea as to why I was there. The story of what had happened was gradually pieced together. Some skeptics may say it was only chance that it happened that way. If it had been just chance I would have been picked up and to the mortuary rather than the hospital. For sure I would not be telling this story. I have made some bad mistakes since then, the Lord knew I would, but he saved me anyway. Praise His Holy name..

If we don’t prevent Him by wrong stubborn choices He will save to the uttermost. My purpose in life is to claim his mercy shun sin, and allow Christ to live out his life in me. Perhaps when we are inside those heavenly wall our guardian angels will tell us the rest of the story about what we could not have known. To who ever this story reaches if it helps them understand a little better the love of God for us poor mortal sinners t’will be worth the time it took to tell.

Richard & Helene  (Received on Sunday January 27, 2002)