In 1989 I had been diagnosed with a large lymphoma cancer which had intruded into the liver. I had some strong chemotherapy treatment and, after that treatment, radiation. The chemotherapy drugs apparently damaged my heart. I had to have a pacemaker installed in 1993 and was diagnosed with congestive heart failure in 1994. In the fall of 1994, 1 had to have surgery. The surgeon apparently did not give me enough medication to take care of fluid retention because a day or so after the surgery I had a very scary experience with congestive heart failure. I was put on drugs to help my heart pump blood, and tried to be very careful about excess salt, etc., but periodically I would have to go to emergency to make sure the symptoms I was experiencing at the time weren't related to my heart. My cardiologist had left the practice and I had been assigned to another cardiologist whom I seldom saw. At one point I was admitted to the chest pain clinic overnight and wasn't to be released until a cardiologist checked me over. This doctor seemed energetic, well versed in his medical field and he invited me to sign up to be his client. I felt frustrated with my situation and decided that I would like to see him. I checked with my primary doctor and, since it was okay with him, made an appointment with this cardiologist. I had to wait two months to see him and, before seeing him, I had to have an adenosine thallium stress test (which is a drug-induced stress test).
One Sunday near my appointment with this cardiologist, Sr. Ann Shields gave a testimony at the Word of God prayer meeting. She said that someone had told her, several years earlier, that she should be praying with people for healing. She did start praying in this manner but became very frustrated and discouraged because nothing ever happened. Then one day, a man came up to her and asked her to pray for his healing and he was healed. She was very excited about it.
I had become very discouraged about the condition of my heart and had been praying that the Lord would heal the congestive heart failure. As Ann Shields walked back to her seat, she went right past me and I quickly asked her to pray for my heart. Sr. Ann laid her hand over my heart and prayed, "Lord, heal her heart" and went on her way. Truthfully, I did not experience anything. As far as I knew, my heart was still the same.
The following Friday, I had the adenosine thallium stress test. Then, the Monday after the test, I had an appointment with this cardiologist. He came striding into the examining room with my file, which was about 1½ in. thick, and said, "Well, the good news is that your heart is normal." Then he started looking through the file. He seemed more and more perplexed and said, "There seems to be some wrong information in here." He said this several more times as he looked through the file. Finally, I said, "I think that the Lord has healed my heart." His response was, "Wel l l l l l l l, the good news is that your heart is normal. That test is very accurate and you can depend upon it." It took him 2 months to send a report to my doctor and then the report only showed what my heart was like before the test and what it was like after the test. There was no explanation of what had happened or why it had happened.
I saw this cardiologist once more several months later. He said, "We don't know what happened. Maybe your heart healed itself, or maybe the medication gave it time to heal, or maybe the medication itself healed it, or maybe it was God. The good news is that your heart is normal." Then he discharged me, but said they would keep my records of file and that I could come back to see him if I ever needed to.
Since that time, my doctor keeps track of my heart and lungs and there have been no sign of the congestive heart failure returning. I recognize that I have to be careful with salt and my diet, but there has been no sign of the congestive heart failure even though the condition of my heart has worsened and is now dependent upon medication and the grace of God to keep pumping. I was told that there is nothing anyone can do about it, other than medication, since it was damaged by the chemotherapy.
Betty Brice September 18, 2003