Incredible, miraculous healing… Johanna, was 18 when we met: she’d been a student of Cosmetology (to become a beautician). Her school director, Maria Inez, asked me to pray for her: she had been sick in hospital for some time, with leukaemia, and, en route to University Hospital in Cali, Colombia, Maria Inez told me she’d been given a week to live – yesterday….
On getting to her room – isolation, as Johanna had no immune system left – the way was barred by a ‘Hattie Jacques’ matron: not wanting us to give Johanna any germs. I asked (in my best Spanish – terrible then! – 2001) when she expected her to die. ‘Tonight’ was her answer. I asked what we (translator and me) could give her that would shorten her life expectancy…at which point she smiled – and let us in!
Johanna was the closest I’ve ever seen someone to be a skeleton, alive: it was traumatic just to look at her. Sat on her bed – in too much pain to sit, lie down, or stand (but you have to do one of those), she was sat, holding her legs to her chest. She was about the width her body should be, but with arms and legs included this day. No one had been her for months because of the immunity problem, and I just felt I should ask if I could hug her. She desperately needed love, arms around her. I just talked to her, told her how much Jesus loved her, cared for her, died for her: and wanted to heal her. Then I heard myself say (I hadn’t thought it, or processed it – if I had, I’d probably not have said it!) – ‘Johanna, you’ll be at your school graduation in 6 weeks’ time, a living testimony to the healing power of Jesus’ …. after my shock at hearing what can only have been God, bypassing my mind, I thought, ‘Well, if she’s at her graduation, she’ll remember that: if she dies tonight, she won’t know!’. That went out of the window when, a few minutes later, her mum arrived as we were leaving, and I heard myself say it again….
A year later, I saw Johanna again – not in a pot on a mantelpiece or in a box in the ground! – looking the polar opposite from that day in the hospital – stunning, well, alive…. that ‘living testimony’! Here’s a video of her telling her story:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7BdpmlKSDE (You might need to paste and copy this link)
There is a tragic ‘downside’ to this story: four years later, in a routine visit to the hospital, the doctor decided, although Johanna was very well, and coming to the end of her University course where she was graduating with a physiotherapy degree, that ‘as a precaution against leukaemia coming back’, they’d give her a blood transfusion….they did: with blood infected with AIDS, and not long after, Johanna died of that disease. Tragic though that is, it doesn’t detract from the amazing miracle God did for her in 2001. Johanna’s a sad loss: she was a lovely girl.