Editor's note: This story was originally published on Dec. 23, 2010.
It was a husband and a father’s worst nightmare.
Mike Hermanstorfer’s wife had gone into labor -- on Christmas Eve. As Tracy Hermanstorfer prepared to give birth, Mike held her hand -- and without warning -- the unthinkable happened. Tracy went into cardiac arrest. She stopped breathing. Her heart stopped beating. Tracy Hermanstorfer was gone.
A team of doctors at Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs furiously worked to save the unborn child but the baby was delivered lifeless -- with barely a hint of a heartbeat.
In a matter of moments, Mike’s Christmas Eve was filled with sorrow. His wife and newborn son were gone. Doctors were eventually able to revive the little boy -- but his mother -- not even so much as a pulse.
But then something very strange happened -- something that to this day puzzles the medical experts. Nearly four minutes after her heart stopped beating -- Tracy came back to life.
“We did a thorough evaluation and can’t find anything that explains why this happened,” Dr. Stephanie Martin told the Associated Press.
But Mike and Tracy believe they know exactly what happened.
It was “the hand of God,” he told reporters. “We are both believers…but this right here, even a non-believer -- you explain to me how this happened. There is no other explanation.”
The doctor said she wasn’t quite sure if she had help from on high but acknowledged, “Wherever I can get the help, I’ll take it.”
The story of Hermanstorfers reminds me of a survey published in journal Sociology of Religion. It indicates that most Americans believe God is involved in their everyday lives. The survey also reveals that Americans believe God is concerned with their personal well-being. An impressive 82 percent said they depend on God for help and guidance in making decisions. And 71 percent believe that when things happen, good or bad, it’s part of the Lord’s plan for the lives.
I’m sure the experts will try to find some sort of scientific explanation for what happened to the Hermanstorfers -- and there will certainly be naysayers who refute any sort of divine intervention that Christmas Eve in Colorado Springs, but I’m not too sure the Hermanstorfers will be swayed.
It reminds me of a favorite country song of mine – performed by George Strait. It goes something like this:
I’ve been to church
I’ve read the book
I know He’s here, but I don’t look
Near as often as I should
Yeah I know I should
His fingerprints are everywhere
I’d just slow down to stop and stare
Opened my eyes and man I swear
I saw God today.
Every time I hear that song, I think about the Hermanstorfer family -- from Security, Colorado -- and the day that God saw fit to bless them with a miracle. In the years to come as they watch their little boy grow into a man -- one day they will tell him about a miraculous birth on a Christmas Eve not in Bethlehem, but in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The night a husband and wife saw the hand of God.