I know the exact date of my Covid 19 exposure: November 24,2021. A day that would change my life through a series of divine interventions when my family and myself went to Detroit to visit my parents for Thanksgiving. These divine interventions relate to the fact that I personally had prepared to remain in Charlotte without my family because of my mother’s reluctance to entertain anyone who was unvaccinated. I was cool with her proscription because I was determined not to be coerced as it related to vaccination. In reflection, I learned that I had left God out of this decision.
Anyhow, through a series of events and a conversation my mother had with her sister, she called and informed me she had changed her mind. She changed her mind on the evening before my family was to leave for our Detroit visit!!! How would I get a ticket less than 12 hours before departure? Well, that must have worked itself out because it can be established that I was exposed there. I conclude that my C-19 exposure occurred during Thanksgiving dinner when one of my family members came close to me and said he was feeling warm. He left to go buy a thermometer and it registered 102 degrees. After taking the rapid and PCR tests–he was positive. We were now concerned about other Thanksgiving dinner attendees, but thankfully no one else tested positive.
In the meantime, I had decided to wait for testing because I had a workplace test scheduled when I returned to Charlotte. However, I soon started feeling ill with a cough that was gut wrenching. Since I knew of my exposure, I could not go to work for my scheduled test, so I rerouted to a local Urgent Care and was told, I was positive. For the next 5 days, I suffered with the worst symptoms being that terrible cough and my oxygen saturation being between 85-90, when the normal level is 95-100. My primary care doctor ordered the Myoclonic antibody infusion referred to in the Neil de Grasse video Pastor McCleary had shared via email prior to this writing.
When I got to the infusion center, they told me my oxygen numbers are too low for treatment and they sent me straight to the emergency room for evaluation. I eventually saw a doctor who ordered labs and x-rays. Now, I am a Registered Nurse and I maintain medical monitoring via MyChart on my phone which alerts me to my lab tests. During this chaos, I noticed my alerts that some of my test numbers were four times what is normal. I was getting emotionally concerned because my medical knowledge told me this was not good, and my awareness and analysis confirmed when I saw x-ray results on my phone. My diagnosis was Bilateral infiltrates—Pneumonia!!! I am thinking “I may not walk out of this place.”
I was admitted to the hospital and spent the next 6 days contemplating my mortality. I was in the proverbial Valley of the Shadow of death. Due to the quarantine nature of medical care, I was alone for three days because my wife had not cleared her own Covid experience. It was during this time that God sent angels in the form of nurses, doctors, CNA’s and housekeepers to encourage me. Every one of those staff person did me only good; just when I needed it most. I knew I was not out of the valley; my wife activated a prayer network of family and friends who began petitioning the throne of Grace on my behalf. I am so grateful because I know it was those prayers that God heard and that spared my life.
I eventually was discharged but the story did not end with that. The final part of my deliverance began as I lay in bed in my home convalescing. It was during this time that God spoke to me by showing me His greatness is beyond Adventism or denominationalism, Christianity or religion, even greater than my interpretations of the Bible. During the home portion of my recovery, He gave me an opportunity to fully surrender my life and walk with Him. I can confess today that I am free indeed. Because He got me through my Valley of the Shadow of death, I have a peace that passes my understanding. I am free from the box of traditions and religiosity in which I was enclosed for over 55 years. Praise God for His choreography that took me to Detroit, into a keen sensitivity of my vulnerability, and His deliverance.
You may ask what this has to do with vaccinations. Prior to my Detroit trip, I had been listening to the “noise” about the vaccination; especially the antivaccine noise. However, after having a conversation with a good friend who offered me her take after I told her of my reluctance, she said “Cool that means God is leading you.” As we continued to talk, it became clear to her that I had a contingency plan that included that if job security was threatened, I would take the vaccine. She then said, “That is not a conviction.” In other words, God is not in our noise, but in that still small voice. She further told me I had a covenant responsibility as priest of my home to guide my family through this pandemic and that I was out of place since my entire family was vaccinated except the “leader” of the home.
As I pondered these things during my home-time, I basked in my newfound clarity and spiritual awakening. I am now better able to hear God’s voice, and at my earliest opportunity got vaccinated. I am learning that obedience to God’s promptings yields personal, family, and societal benefit. I learned through this experience that Valleys come and have deadly consequences and that God’s revelation of intervention trumps what the devil meant for evil; God transform for my/ our good.
I remind you that there is noise before and in the Valley of death, but God is the owner of this earth and its mountain peak and valleys. I suggest you let Him filter any noise you are hearing and allow Him to walk you through your valley to healing, recovery, and revelation. I thank God for helping me hear my mother, those hospital staffers, my friend, and the de Grasse video Dr. McCleary shared. It was clear and concise and allows each person to be persuaded in his or her own mind what they think, feel, and believe is best for them.
Thanks for sharing Doc. Your sharing confirmed my experience that I have been delivered from a valley of death.
RN, MSN Husband of Michelle (30 years), father to Micah (20), Marielle (17), and COVID-19 survivor