Spirituality

The Higher Power - Preface To My Soul's Code

By 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 experience.

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 bed.

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 long time.

This story, in its entirety, is true.

Web Site of Vicky Bowker Jeter

 

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