The Story of Arika Stovall
Three seconds. That’s how long we had from the moment we drifted off the road until the truck hit the pillar at 85mph. In three seconds Hunter had to handle a situation that would either kill us immediately or save our lives. He keeps beating himself up for my pain but he saved my life. He keeps saying ‘I should have protected you and I didn’t do that’ but he did exactly what he needed to do to make sure my life didn’t end. The whole baseball player part helped him out…if he can hit a 95mph fastball he can do anything. He took care of me. And when we were both lying in our beds in the ER he found a way to come protect my heart and give me a hug. Lord knows I needed that just as much as my safety.
I’m overwhelmed at how little damage was done to Hunter and I in a wreck that should have chopped our bodies in half. I’m in awe of the presence of God in this entire situation. Every part of this experience we went through points directly to Him. The way God helped Hunter to respond exactly the way he did behind the wheel, spinning the truck exactly where it should have to be able to smash into the pillar directly in the middle of me and Hunter so we were both untouched…that doesn’t just happen. God doesn’t throw protection around like that for no reason. He does it because he’s not finished with us.
I have problems with my heartbeat. When I get anxious or worried it flutters pretty bad…pulling me into panic attacks. The moment we hit and I realized I was conscious I realized that is what was happening to me. While out of breath and trying to move my legs i was screaming..panicked…yelling for Hunter to just say something. I needed to know he was okay. Looking to the drivers seat all I saw was his head through the windshield, a face full of blood, and a body that wasn’t moving. I looked straight out the truck and there was a man..bright with a big white beard. No other cars in sight…just this man. He was my guardian angel. He saw me and immediately told me that an ambulance was coming. I jumped out of the car, ran over to Hunters side and just looked at this man. From that moment until Hunter was cut & lifted out of the truck I believe with my whole heart that looking at this man helped me to literally believe in that moment that Hunter was next to me on the road. I don’t know if it was a hallucination or me unconsciously dreaming or a glimpse of heaven…but all I knew in that moment was that Hunter was safe with me. This man..looking at him for a short moment..helped me not witness Hunter being peeled out of the truck. I believe if I saw that I would have had a heart attack. Right when Hunter was actually out and next to me, I asked this man when the ambulance was coming. He told me in just a second. He walked away, I blinked and a flashlight was in my face. The paramedics were there helping me and Hunter and the anxiety and worry if he was okay disappeared because we were in good hands.
Here is the miracle part: no broken bones, concussions that lasted not even 24 hours, no internal damage, and just a few stitches in my knee and hunters face. Only that after an accident that paramedics wonder how we didn’t die instantly and a truck that looks like it’s been through a tree grinder. We’re both already released from the hospital not even 48 hours after entering. All of our belongings in perfect condition besides a few things here and there..and the only thing left behind at the crash scene is Hunters bible open, with a page marked with scripture telling us to not be afraid; Jesus is with us.
I am amazed. Absolutely taken away by the presence of God. So blessed for him sending me an angel. So thankful for Hunter and his second chance at life…for his healing and health. We are so fortunate for families who traveled hundreds and hundreds of miles to be with us. And so thankful for all the thoughts and prayers that were sent our way. The power of prayer is real, and it healed me and Hunter. We are in a lot of pain because of the injuries, so any more prayers are appreciated while we recover.
But tonight I’m praying for all of you. If there’s anything you read out of this novel I’m typing up here it’s this: I want everyone to to know the love and the power of God. He has a purpose…and it’s so clear that NOTHING…not even a car accident like this one will cause his plans for you to change. We are put on this beautiful earth for a reason and the reason is to help people know Him. We are made to show and share His love. And if it takes a car wreck like this for me to get to do that then I would do it all over again. I’m praying that everyone who reads this can get a glimpse of Gods faithfulness. He is GOOD. And working. And the plans he has for YOU and your life aren’t going anywhere. Good or bad, what you want or what you don’t want…it’s God’s doing. It’s his plans unfolding. It’s his kingdom coming. Embrace the struggles and the joys of this life! Without a doubt it’s a miracle we’re alive, but more than that it’s simply Gods plan for us. We’re so grateful for this wreck and all it will do in our lives. We are blessed to be okay. And so in love with the amazing God we serve.