Ben’s wife, Stacie, had a terrible accident while riding her horse causing severe trauma to her brain and leaving her in a coma from which she never recovered. Ben was unable to visit her until just after her surgery and only for a short time. Ben posted an update on Facebook for family and friends. “She’s a fighter, and through God’s power and might she will wake up, if it is God’s will.”
In the morning, Ben was very appreciative of “everyone’s kind words and prayers”. That night there was little change in Stacie’s condition, but Ben wrote, “Thank you for all of the supportive texts and posts! We are so blessed to have so many people praying on our behalf. Philippians 4:6 is helping me get through these times. Please be patient and continue to pray for our dear Stacie.”
The next day still little change but Ben wrote, “I can’t thank everyone enough for the prayers and expressions of love and support. It’s a tremendous blessing that no word can express. Today I’m relying upon Matthew 6:25-34, more specifically verses 26 and 33. Also Hebrews 11.” Later that day he would write again, “Please read Mark 5:25-34 before reading my update. It’s a great parable of the healing power of our Savior. This passage is helping me to push out this not so good information.” In spite of the bad news he had not given up hope that Stacie would survive. “It’s because we believe in prayer, and we will meditate on things that are of good report (Philippians 4:8)”, he wrote.
That night Ben found comfort in a reading by his mother-in-law from 2 Corinthians 1:3-11. He wrote, “There are so many friends and family providing encouraging words and support. It is keeping us optimistic.” He concluded his Facebook post with Romans 8:28.
Ben continued to look for any sign of improvement or any word of good news about Stacie’s condition. He was hoping to have Facetime with her. He wrote, “The Bible says in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24 to ‘Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus…’ This can be hard to do in these times, but we are not our own so we are not going to rely upon our own understanding!”
Facetime was allowed and that night Ben described it this way: “The Lord blessed us with the opportunity to see, talk and sing devotional songs to Stacie. I wish we had brought song books home from church because we (me) forgot some of the words. I’m looking forward to the day she tells everyone the story of how I butchered the songs.” He went on to write how happy he was that her mother was able to see her and that their children were able to express their love and concerns to their mother. And he wrote, “I’m also thankful that the voice of an angel, Aimee Enriquez, was able to sing to my wife.” Ben wrote of family, friends and neighbors who visited and brought food, and said, “I don’t have the word to express my gratitude. We’re surrounded by remarkable people!” Then he concluded, “I will leave you with the description of a worthy woman. Proverbs 31:10-31. There are a lot of qualities in this passage, and my Stacie has many of them.”
The next day Ben gave us 1 Corinthians 13:7, 13 about love. He wrote, “Stacie is LOVED very much! I will focus on love today.” The day did not go well, but they were able to Facetime with Stacie again. “We had song books this time so we didn’t have to sing completely from memory.” He posted a picture saying, “I hope it makes you want to hug yours.” He also gave us another passage, John 14:1-4.
The following night Ben reminded us how “Jesus prayed in the garden three times hoping to not have to go to the cross. Each time he prayed, ‘not as I will, but as You will.’ Hundreds have been praying for our sweet Stacie to recover from her terrible accident, but that isn’t the Lord’s will for her… her race is nearly complete. The Lord has promised a crown of life to those who love him. Knowing that she had an obedient faith gives me no doubt that her crown will be magnificent.” Ben found another reason to be positive. Stacie was an organ donor and Ben asked that we pray she would be a match for his coworker’s father to have a lifesaving transplant.
The next day was Mother’s Day. That afternoon came this word from Ben: “Praise God! Stacie is a match for my coworker’s Dad. The Lord works in mysterious ways.”
Then, the following night Stacie passed surrounded by her family. Ben “prayed a prayer of thanksgiving for the time they were all given to spend with such a sweet soul.” The next morning Ben received a call that they had found new homes for her heart, lungs, liver and kidneys. As her brother said, “Although we didn’t receive the miracle we wanted, several other people received the miracle they were wanting.” The hospital flew a flag in honor of Stacie all day.
It is impossible to hear Ben’s story without being inspired by his faith. Ben’s faith showed great conviction in the existence of God. Ben’s faith demonstrated a complete trust in God. Ben’s faith expressed the need to be obedient to God. Ben’s faith magnified the writings inspired by God. Ben’s faith acknowledged the will of God. Ben’s faith moves us all to glorify God.
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135