THE IRON PEN by Daniel Hite

June 26, 2017

Life is fragile–handle with care…and with prayer.

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhite @ 11:09 pm

On Tuesday, May 16, I arrived at the office and within 10 minutes I was found unconscious and not breathing at the door of my office. My wife found me, had our admin assistant call 911, and attempted CPR on me. She began calling friends and family to pray and spread the request. (More on this later.) The EMTs arrived in 5-6 minutes, applied CPR and 4 shocks before a heartbeat returned. It was “Sudden Cardiac Arrest.” I was rushed to St. Luke’s Hospital, about a 10 minute drive. I was told that the teamwork was amazing, the EMT team, the ER team, the cardiac cath team, the ICU team, and the stepdown telemetry team. I was on life support and didn’t regain consciousness for 4 days. I was told that I was put into a hypothermic state (reduced body temperature and induced coma) for those 4 days. The doctors listed me as critical during that time and were very concerned about brain damage due to the several minutes my heart was not beating. (Damage can start at the 3-minute mark with no oxygen to the brain.)

On Friday evening, they were able to successfully return my body temperature to normal and wait…until I awoke that evening. I remembered nothing from the collapse on Tuesday through that Friday night. I had suffered a slight stroke, but with only one symptom-double-vision-which lasted for 24 hours. This is where the story changes…

From Friday night through Saturday evening, the ICU staff and visiting family members witnessed a miracle. All the machines had been removed Friday night and by Saturday night I was alert and famished! The hospital staff testified that the recovery was remarkable.

Now back to the call for prayer. As the EMTs worked on me the previous Tuesday, my wife was calling a few friends and family to pray and spread the word. The network of prayer began to spread all around the St. Louis area, all around the country, and all around the world! From the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem to Papua New Guinea and South Korea, God’s people were lifting up my name to Him in intercession. As my wife told it, she “wanted God to get tired of hearing Dan’s name!” God answered the prayers of his people, from family to high school classmates, from co-workers and friends to prayer and Bible study groups around the country. I was so, so humbled as I heard about the thousands who were praying for me, and also for the hundreds who came to or called the hospital. God is good! And I am so grateful to Him and for those who faithfully lifted me up to His throne. Another “God-thing” that happened in the hospital…God used some wonderful friends who had brought a CD player/radio on the weekend that played 24/7 in my ICU room–and which I believe also played a major role in my quick recovery. On Tuesday night just after midnight, before the implantation of a defibrillator in my chest, I awakened to a song on the radio, a song which God used mightily in my life that night. It was the right song at the right time. It spoke to my heart and spirit on so many levels, more than I can communicate here. The supernatural peace of God swept over me that night. (Here is the song if you are interested: Chris Tomlin’s “I Will Rise.”) I realized that whatever happened, I was “more than a conqueror (winner)” through Christ’s love expressed to me. I cannot imagine this whole hospitalization experience without the powerful presence of God, guarding my heart and mind, filling me with hope and thanksgiving. How non-believers cope with life and death issues is beyond me. God has made Himself personal through His Son, Jesus–God’s express image and expression of all He is. He truly is our (my) “rock, fortress, deliverer, my God, my strength, in Whom I will trust…” (Psalm 18:1-3)

God had delivered me back from death and restored me quickly! When I left the hospital on Thursday (a 10-day stay), I made a stop in the ICU to thank the team, and they were amazed! Their faces shone with surprise and delight. I found out that only 10-11% survive cardiac arrest, and without any loss of brain function, the percentage shrinks even more. I had been fully restored, and the doctors and nurses-to the person-expressed their surprise at how quickly and fully I had recovered! Praise the Lord. I am so grateful for His grace and mercy and for the faithfulness of God’s prayer warriors. I am truly blessed. But the story does not end there.

A couple of weeks after I had returned home, my wife and I made a visit (with homemade cookies in hand) to the Metro-West paramedics who had originally worked on me. They happened to all be there at the station. They were amazed and so joyful that they had seen a positive result to their initial work. They were amazed at my recovery. They also said that maybe one in two hundred come back to say thanks. God is so good.

Apparently, God is not finished with me yet. Many of the hospital staff spoke that word to me. Many friends and family said the same thing. I believe it. I have always preached that we are indestructible until God is ready to receive us “home.” He wasn’t ready for me, yet. It is God who lends us life, for He is life, and it is God who receives it back to Himself. Life is fragile and needs to be handled with loving-care and with prayer. The Scripture says that God’s lovingkindness is better than life (Psalm 63:3-4).

Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips will praise You.
So I will bless You as long as I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.

I believe it! And I encourage you to turn your life over to the Lord. The blessings of His faith, hope, peace and love are real and are available to all who will earnestly call upon Him. God bless you and thanks for reading my story!

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