Vicky Bowker Jeter
This direct experience of God, despite
multi-faceted physical and emotional pain, stands as the
cornerstone of my spiritual conviction and service in faith
today. Not only because it was an instantaneous healing of my
distress, but it was the first time I "knew" within
my soul that Omnipresent Power had moved through my life with
precious regard for my existence.
Here, God is referred to as He and Him. While today for me
Spirit is androgynous, this was sincerely my childlike
perspective, and in the intimate moments of this unfolding my
ability to address my relationship with "Him"
personally was a part of how it came about so profoundly. In
my understanding "Soul's Code" refers to my
authentic agreement and purpose for coming into this Life
It was a typical oven-hot summer evening for the Las Vegas
Valley Desert of Nevada, in July, 1971. During that time of
year, as the sun sinks slowly over the near by Red Rock
Mountains, everything that has been within reach of the sun's
scorching heat gradually cools down to a steady mellow warmth.
I had grown to almost nine years old there, always enjoying
such sunsets as this one. My young heart somehow found peace
in that mellow warm feeling everything took on. I sat in the
large back yard of our home intently wishing that anything
could bring me peace from the anxiousness that I knew would
keep me from sleep long into the night.
The next morning, bright and early, I rose with my mother just
as dawn's light peaked the top of Sunrise Mountain to stream
softly through my bedroom window. Sunrises, too, were a key to
serenity, and I quickly began to decide that my inevitably
boring and painful stay at the Southern Nevada Memorial
Hospital, which was to begin that day, might be endurable.
This would be my fourth orthopedic operation within
seven years; the first having taken place when I was two. It
was at moments such as this, when I felt terrific physically,
yet we were proceeding to take me to the hospital and put me
IN pain and OUT of commission, that I questioned deepest why
God allowed me to strangle by my umbilical cord, nearly to
death, for hours before I was born causing the damage to the
motor of my brain that is called Spastic Cerebral Palsy. I did
not have full control of my legs, making it necessary for me
to use leg braces and crutches for walking.
The orthopedic operations and physical therapy were the best
procedures available in order to maximize my ability to walk.
I was having a bone graft done on my left ankle, which the
doctor said would prevent my left foot from twisting inward.
Within a day following the operation my doctor came to tell us
that it went well, and we should see great improvement in my
walking. I just listened and nodded and cried as my leg
throbbed, and the massive cast-restricted muscle spasms racked
my body. "Improvement." That's what I always heard.
From my subjected, child's point of view, that is not quite
how I saw it.
Three days after this surgery the pain had escalated rather
than subsiding-- exhausted, I was coming to my wits-end with
God. I was lonesome, without a roommate, and my idle mind
freely entertained awful, painful thoughts. By early afternoon
of the fourth day I was invested in a private, out-loud,
argumentative discussion with the Almighty, Himself. I called
Him dirty, mean and rotten, uncaring, unforgiving and very
selfish! I told Him that if he did not find some way to show
me a reason for everything that had happened to me, He could
forget it; I just plain did not want Him anymore!!!
This declaration was delivered with balled up fists, and
onslaught of muscle spasms, and a red tear-stained face. My
mother and grandmother stood close by, offering a loving hand
to hold, and waiting for my swiftly diminishing energy supply
to send me to dreamland.
I heard the hushed sound of several voices that seemed far
away. My vision was out of focus, and I realized I was waking
from a deep sleep. There was a priest and two nuns speaking to
each other at the foot of may bed. I did not know them, and I
was momentarily confused. Then a sharp pulling from within my
healing leg made me well aware of my surroundings. My mother
and grandmother had gone. I asked my strange visitors why they
were there. They simply said they had come to comfort me. I
felt really bad about them being there because I was sure my
grandma had sent them because of what I said to God. Upon
expressing my concerns to them, they genuinely explained that
they always traveled through hospitals together, and they did
not know Grandma. I am not Catholic. I had seen clergy in
hospitals before--but never three together.
I was more comfortable with them then, and we talked for a
while. They listened to me with engaged interest and without
comment. Then they said a quiet prayer for me and blessed my
As the trinity left, my room was filled with Holy
Spirit--energy so tangible, like steam filling a chilled
room-- unmistakable to me.
I would have been petrified were it not for the profound
sensation of unconditional acceptance. I dared not ask my
questions--I dared not even breath. Yet, my questing was
completely validated in that moment. There were no words, but
I was made to understand the certainty of purpose in my life.
And that it was necessary I be made to wait for comprehension.
As the omnipresence faded from my sensate experience, so did
all the pain drain from my body, and soul. The feeling was
beyond description! I did not physically hurt for three solid
days! The total effect of this experience was nearly beyond my
own belief--not only that it actually happened at all--but I
felt beyond humbled that Spirit took such patience--it seemed
incredible that I was not in trouble, and yet some ineffable
way I realized, too, my own determination had invited the
awesome exchange. Still, I spoke of it to no one for a very
This story, in its entirety, is true.
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