The night was black as pitch. Two garage lights shone like beacons as my partner and I pushed the stretcher up the slanted driveway.
The garage door was open and inside mom and dad stood with their son (let’s call him Jim). “We don’t know what else to do,” mom said. She crossed her arms over her chest and lifted heavy eyes. “He needs help.”
“He locked himself in the bathroom and he’s been cutting himself,” dad said and motioned to the young man whose eyes were locked on the ground.
A police officer stepped up beside us. “He’s a Baker Act,” he said. “We just need him medically cleared before he goes to the appropriate facility.”
I looked at Jim and felt the sudden flutter of the Holy Spirit. “Alright,” I said. “Go ahead and have a seat on the stretcher and we’ll get you checked out okay?”
Jim’s nod was as perceptible as a gentle breeze in a tornado. Once in the back of the rescue I let my paramedic student go to work in evaluating and treating Jim. All Jim needed was supportive care. Scars reached up his forearms like branches in the middle of winter.
As I continued to make sure my paramedic student was treating Jim appropriately I felt the presence of God increase. I looked at Jim and saw dark clouds all around him. In the vision his demeanor changed. Sorrow and apathy gave way to fear and panic. The clouds pulled all available oxygen into themselves. As he struggled the clouds grew thicker. All light vanished. The clouds gave way to deep darkness that grew hands to choke the poor kid.
Explain the vision and lay hands on him. The voice was sudden and it was clear. I want you to lay hands on him and ask my presence to increase. That’s all. I want to show him what it’s like to be with me.
I chewed on my bottom lip. My typical experiences of ministering the love of God involves words, prophetic, prayer, etc. This time God was asking me not to do any of that. I was just supposed to lay on hands and ask the presence of God to increase. And I was supposed to do this in front of my student. Sheesh.
I’m not about hype God, I said. Oh good, he answered. Me either. I’m about love. Are you going to do what I’m asking you to do?
I swallowed and moved to Jim’s side. “Hey Jim. Listen sometimes the Lord shows me different things for people.” I felt the eyes of my student. “Would it be okay if I shared what the Lord showed my for you.”
Jim looked up at me through hollow eyes. “Y, yeah. Sure.”
As I explained the vision of the clouds and darkness his mouth became a straight line while tears filled his eyes. “Listen Jim, I feel like the Lord wants you to know what it’s like to be with him. Is that okay?”
Jim continued to stare through the back door and nodded his head.
I laid my hand on Jim’s chest. “Lord increase your presence.” For a moment all I could feel was the continual stare of my student. But a few seconds’ later things were changing. I felt the presence of God begin to grow and spread. I watched the muscles throughout Jim’s body begin to relax. I saw the corners of his mouth twitch and threaten a smile. “You feel that Jim?” I asked.
Jim turned to me. His eyes were wide and the heaviness pulling on his face was gone. “Yes!” he said. “It’s so…I dunno…peaceful and…” he blinked a few times.
“That’s Jesus,” I told him. “You can have this. You don’t have to live in the darkness.”
As we pulled into the hospital Jim exhaled a breath that sounded almost like a laugh.
“How’s it going?” the police officer asked him as we rolled through the ER.
“Good,” Jim answered and smiled. “I’m doing good.”
Jesse and Kara Birkey
Jesse and Kara Birkey are committed lovers of Jesus who seek to show others the extraordinary life of Jesus is available for everyone. They have authored two books, been featured in films and seek to serve the Lord in whatever ways they can. Follow their blog here.
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Life Resurrected, Extraordinary Miracles through Ordinary People has been endorsed by Sid Roth and Mark Virkler and is a collection of inspiring stories making it clear that the extraordinary life of Jesus is available to all who love Him. It’s also the testimony of Jesse’s life, the road he travelled bringing him into the arms of Jesus. Get the paperback here. Get the Kindle Version Here. View the trailer here.
Marriage What’s the Point? One couple finds meaning in a crazy mess is the story of their marriage—The tragedy and the restoration. They bear their hearts in an attempt to get others to bear theirs and finally receive the freedom they’ve longed for. Get the paperback here. Get the Kindle Version Here.