Photo by Trevor Rapp
On June 15, 2000, I was four years old, the middle of five children, living in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. My family was attending an end-of-the-year baseball pool party for my brother. At some point everyone went inside and I was alone by the pool. I don’t remember falling into the deep end…
They frantically searched for me. My mom looked for me in the pool but didn’t see me. More searching, more panic. Seven minutes had passed and my mom heard a voice. “Check the pool. Check the pool.” She did and this time saw my red swimming trunks.
They pulled me out. My belly was swollen, full of water. I was purple. I did not have a pulse. My father is a doctor and began giving me CPR. An ambulance was called and EMS took me to the hospital where they told my parents I was dead with less than one percent chance I could be brought back to life. Somehow, miraculously, they decided to fly me to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham. The doctor who took care of me that night was named Dr. Buckmaster. Even though others had given me up for dead, Dr. Buckmaster did not. He was persistent, refusing to give up. But there was so much water in my brain…
During this time I received an unbelievable gift from God. An angel—a warm and comforting figure bathed in light and clothed in white, came to me, picked me up, and took me to a massive ladder. We went up the ladder, and when we got to the surface, we stepped onto a glass floor. Jesus met me there. He was smiling and it was the best feeling of my entire life. I have never experienced anything like it since. Absolute joy. Like being wrapped up in a giant hug with absolute protection and not a care in the world. We approached a massive door with jewels on it and opened it. I saw my Uncle Mark who had died six months before. When he died he had cancer and was so sick. I remember his face had bumps on it when he died. But when I saw him he was perfectly well and healthy. I asked him if he wanted to go back to earth but he did not. My Uncle Mark and Jesus told me it wasn’t my time yet.
Dr. Buckmaster kept working to try to save me. Overnight it had looked so bad…but at some point things inexplicably turned around for me. The water in my brain miraculously disappeared. My parents had been told that in the unlikely event that I did survive, I would have serious problems and would be in a wheelchair the rest of my life. But that didn’t happen. I am perfectly healthy and strong with no damage whatsoever from the drowning experience. I am now a junior in college with a 3.5 GPA. It’s like it never happened.
But it did happen, and I thank God for this experience because now I have assurance that God is absolutely real. God miraculously saved my life. God is a Healer and His power is unimaginable, incomprehensible.
Two final interesting notes…
First, my Uncle Mark that I saw in heaven was a massive hunter. His nickname—Buckmaster.
Second, many people were praying for me during this time. My mom was overwhelmed with sadness and worry, and at one point when my situation looked hopeless, she prayed that God would show her something in His Word to help her. She opened her Bible and this was the verse before her that gave her great comfort and let her know I would be okay.
“He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters.” Psalm 18:16
A Million God Stories is a Christ-centered ministry which offers a platform for Christians from all streams of Christian faith to give praise for how God has worked in their lives. Christ heals in infinitely creative ways and we acknowledge that His way of helping may differ from person to person.