In Rush of Heaven: One Woman’s Miraculous Encounter with Jesus, Ema McKinley shares her personal story of her miraculous encounter with Jesus. Along with Cheryl Ricker, she gives a detailed account of her life, before during and after her work related accident and again after she was miraculously healed on Christmas Eve 2011.
Admittedly, I was a little cautious when I started reading Ema’s story. I believe in miraculous healing but sometimes these stories sound like a scam or exaggeration. This story was none of these. I loved this book for the extra details included that let you see Ema as a real person who had real struggles physically and spiritually. She is ordinary with an extraordinary story.
In 1993, Ema was found hanging upside down in a loft in the storage area of the store where she worked. She had been knocked back by a blast from the heating system. In the fall, her foot caught her. She was left hanging unconscious and upside down for hours. Her ankle was injured in the accident and she developed and was diagnosed with Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). This is an extremely painful condition caused by trauma. In Ema’s case it did not remain isolated but spread all over.
Initially, Ema experienced severe pain, swelling and twisting in her left foot, ankle and leg. Despite all manner of therapy, drugs and specialists, her condition deteriorated with the RSD spreading over most of her body, twisting her spine in the process. After three years, she was confined to a wheelchair where she remained for the next 15 years. Unable to care for herself, Ema required caregivers to assist with almost all daily basic functions. As the years passed, doctors basically attempted to keep her pain under control but there was no hope of improvement….until Jesus showed up on Christmas Eve. Without giving away her story, lets just say that Ema’s healing was dramatic and very sudden. It was an absolutely amazing and true testimony to the fact that our God is the Healer!
Ever the skeptic, there are some extras in this book that I greatly appreciate as they give validity to her claims. In the back of the book are reports from doctors and lawyers that verify her account. My favorite inclusion was the section of full color photographs taken before her accident, during her decline and immediately after she was healed. The before pictures show a broken, twisted, diseased body. The after pictures are completely the opposite. The effect is stunning. I highly recommend this book to anyone who needs a dose of hope, a reminder of God’s power or just a Christmas miracle.
Sarah McCubbin is a homeschooling and foster mom in NE Ohio where she resides with her husband and 7 children. In addition to reading great books, she enjoys gardening, traveling and blogging at Living Unboxed.
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Zondervan. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.