By Ada Brownell
Age 7, I stared in horror. Mama sat in the middle of the linoleum floor surrounded by a pool of blood with clots floating around in it.
By listening to my brothers and sisters, I learned Mama fell off a ladder. She punctured one of her internal organs on a sharp stick when she landed.
The phone call already had been made, and the black ambulance pulled up in front of the house.
“That’s the hearse,” someone said. “They also use it for an ambulance.
I was shooed into the kitchen while the medics loaded Mama on a board, carried her out and whisked her away.
Since I was so young when the accident occurred, I have no idea how the hospital treated Mother to save her life or if they gave her a blood transfusion. Whatever they did, her recovery was a miracle from God. The accident probably occurred in 1944. The Red Cross began its first nationwide blood program for civilians in 1948, opening its first collection center in Rochester, N. Y. We lived in Colorado.
As an adult, I know without a doubt after losing that much blood, it was divine work of our Heavenly Father that Mama lived, especially in that era. But our large family (I was the youngest of eight children) knew how to pray, although my siblings and daddy were relatively new converts. Mama had a background in the Methodist Church. But beyond that we had a bunch of church folks in our small town that prayed for us even before we arrived in Fruita from the previous family home in Penokee, Kan..
“A big family is moving here, and we need to pray for them,” the pastor announced. W hen the crisis came with Mama’s fall, I’m sure the same prayer warriors stormed heaven in Mama’s behalf.
I don’t know how long she was in the hospital, which also had a floor dedicated to a tuberculosis sanitarium. After she was released, I remember sitting beside her in church, leaning on her, tears dripping off my cheeks, thankful she lived.
But fear still gripped my heart. To pay off the hospital bill, Mama washed dishes for the hospital—and the sanitarium. I overheard enough conversations to know TB is contagious, and sometimes kills.
When I voiced my fears to Mama she said, “We use lots of bleach and that kills the germs.”
The miracle I saw as a child taught me God answers prayer. When any problem surfaced, our family prayed, and I was right in the middle of it.
I was only told of the miracles I experienced as an infant. Mama probably was in the garden trying to make sure the family had enough food to eat and the older children watched me. One day my two-year-old brother emptied a salt shaker in my eyes. Our mighty God protected me from eye damage, and I’ve never had vision problems.
Then another time a sister gave me a bath in a dishpan on top of the wood cook stove. The stove hadn’t had a fire in it during the hot weather, but that day it did. She sat me down on the stove top and deep burns resulted.
Yet, I don’t even remember it. I don’t think I was taken to a doctor. Our family was desperately poor. As far as I know, I never went to the doctor until I got married, except the physician came to the house when I was born and once when I had croup. God provided for our needs, including miracles.
We are so blessed our Heavenly Father loves us and cares so much He answers prayer. He’s still doing miracles and answering our petitions.