Amazing to Meet Amy Again


If you have read Growing Food God’s Way, you may remember a mention of forgiveness. On pp. 108 & 109 (paperback) I shared an encounter with one of America’s most amazing athletes. She earned 4 gold medals in the 1996 Olympics and 2 more at the 2000 Games. Her name, then, was Amy van Dyken. She is married to former NFL player Tom Rouen.

About 2 1/2 yrs ago, she severed her spine in an ATV accident. The injury left her paralyzed from the waist down, but her upper body remains very strong.

This morning, before the alarm went off, I envisioned meeting her again. It wasn’t completely odd…I had a business engagement in the town I suspected she lives in. I had an unverified residence address…and no phone # to call ahead. In the “vision,” I prayed for her. As a practical matter, I had been trying to get her a copy of GFGW for nearly 2 years.

On a sky-blue, January afternoon in Arizona, I headed off to try to find what could be her residence. Thankfully, my GPS said it was only about 14 mins from where I had been. As it routed me to  the back of this nice subdivision of homes, I discovered it was a gated community. (Rats! I should have known)
There was a sign that told visitors to head back to the main road, then N and W to a Main Gate.

I doubled back and drove what seemed to be far north to get to the street it mentioned & headed west. After a couple of attempts, I gave up and went back the way I came. It was then I realized I needed to pray. “God, if the impression I got in the morning was accurate, please help me get in.” I found myself going to the same 1st secured gate. I paid better attention to the name of the development and went right back up N and W as I had done minutes earlier, but I went even farther west. I found it!! (Yay God)

Now, the hard part…getting past the security enclave. The young man asked where I intended to go. I gave him the address and he walked back a-ways to check something. Then, without much ado, he let me go in. My GPS took me way south and a bit east. I parked in front of the address & went to the door…still not knowing if I had the right place. I was a bit relieved to see a gentle ramp up to the threshold of the solid oak door.

I rang the bell…silence. No dog barking…nothing. I waited a long time (by my impatient standards) then finally rang the doorbell again. More silence. The options were swirling in my head: do I dare walk around to the backyard gate and yell for someone back there? Or do I knock hard on that solid door? As I was pondering, I thought I did hear a noise inside. Very shortly, the door opened and there was Amy and her lovable (and quiet) Golden lab.

As I petted the dog, I tried to introduce myself: “My name is David Devine, I wrote a book about 2yrs ago. On pages 108/109, it mentions you…you see I met you at the Will Rogers Airport in Oklahoma City…you were traveling with a friend…and there were posters all over the airport and you were on those posters!” She smiled as if recalling how “embarrassing” it must have been to be plastered all over the place…even the ramp from the building to the plane!

Amy was all smiles…very jovial. Looking back, I think she was trying to put me at ease because the whole thing was a bit AWKWARD. I signed the last paperback copy I had and gave it to Amy. She was appreciative and gracious about it. (She promised to read it)

In retrospect, giving the book was an icebreaker. I was there to give and not to take. I was reminded to ask: “May I pray for you?” She consented and I believe I heard God blessing her through that prayer.

Even though I am sure that using Kangen water could only improve her well-being, I was not there for business. However, she did take my card and allow a selfie. Being as she was not expecting company, her hair was in about-to-take-a-shower mode. So the picture on this blog is not the one I took. It is even better, because it shows her special dog too.

I called¬†Paul Gautchi afterwards because my visit was book-related. He was quite pleased with seeing me listen to God and act in faith. He went out of his way to emphasize it – as a dose of encouragement and edification. That is Paul’s prayer for all of us. He then prayed for her, and I would ask you to…

Pray for Amy. She has endured countless hours of rigorous physical therapy. There has to be a mental & emotional element too. Finally pray for her faith in Jesus. He is her only Great Physician (ours as well!) DD

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