By Mark Ellis —
I want to tell you about a friend of mine named Dehbe. At one time, Dehbe was a very capable payroll administrator for a retailer in Orange County, California, overseeing five stores. She had a steel trap mind so sharp she could do the mathematical computations for payroll in her head.
Six months after her son Josh was born, her husband left her. “I tried to get him back,” she says. “It took five years for the divorce.”
When she confirmed he was living with another woman, she knew she had to sign the papers even though she didn’t believe in divorce.
One month after signing, she was taking her son Josh to elementary school and was late for work. That morning a light rain had been falling. Somehow, as she sped around a curve on Pacific Coast Highway, her wheels spun out, and she found herself spinning toward an oncoming bus. As her car spun around, she looked the horrified bus driver in the eyes, barely missed the massive vehicle, and slammed into a wall.
The near-fatal accident left her physically and mentally disabled, with impaired vision, unable to work. “I was supposed to be a one-year-old imbecile the rest of my life. I had total amnesia. The only thing I remembered was God,” she recounts.
A large concoction of pain meds and other drugs became her way of life.
One result of her accident seemed to be a permanent sensitivity to light that caused her to wear heavy, dark plastic wraparound glasses, of the kind used by ophthalmologists when they dilate a patient’s eyes.
Her first healing miracle happened at a sunrise Easter service at the Irvine Bowl in Laguna Canyon. When the sun’s rays first rose above the hills, Dehbe’s eyes were healed and she no longer had to wear her dark glasses. It was wonderful to see her eyes once more.
A few years later, Dehbe contracted a rare disease called Durcums, which is a form of lymphoma. This disease causes tumors to form throughout Dehbe’s body. As these tumors get larger and larger, if they are not removed, they can break her bones.
Dehbe attended our church regularly until her rent increased and she could no longer afford to live in Laguna Beach. As a single mom with no way to support herself, she qualified for social security disability and we were able to find her HUD-subsidized housing in a neighboring city.
After she moved, we saw her at church less and less. She couldn’t drive, so she was dependent on getting rides or public transportation. But I would get phone calls from her occasionally and I would call to check on her.
During the Covid crisis, I wondered how she was doing and I tried to phone her several times, but she didn’t pick up. With her many underlying health conditions, I was deeply concerned about her well-being.
Finally, I reached her last week. I was so relieved to hear she was still alive. Her voice seemed weak at first, but as we talked she seemed to gain lucidity.
“I’ve had a lot of challenges, but a lot of blessings,” she informed me. She told me she received the vaccine for Covid, but had essentially been bedridden for the last eight years because of a fall that injured her back.
Prior to the fall, she began to suffer grand mal seizures. During one seizure, she fell and injured her back after she got up to use the bathroom. “It hit like lightning and threw me three feet into the closet. I blacked out and was in the hospital for a month. I had two bulging discs and cracked five other discs.”
Last year she fell again, which resulted in another bulging disc. It was like it took my breath away and I got to the hospital and they treated me really bad, like I was faking it,” she says.
After leaving the hospital, she was in despair. “I cried out to God and apologized for being too weak to handle the challenge he had given me. ‘Please Lord, please, could you take this pain away from me?’
God heard her cry and something remarkable happened.
“I felt His hand on the top of my head,” she says. Then she felt his Spirit – like an electrical impulse — go down from the top of her head, down her spine, the length of her body.
“He took all my pain away!” she exclaimed. “I was laying there in shock. I started crying, ‘Thank you! Thank you! There was no pain!”
Dehbe didn’t tell anyone for 24 hours because she thought she might “jinx” her healing. “My faith was strong but because of all that happened to my back and being in bed for 10 years, I thought I shouldn’t say anything.”
Finally she called her sister, Bonnie, and told her the Lord touched her and healed her back. They started praising God together and crying into the phone.
An MRI performed by Dr. Amir Pouradib in Laguna Hills confirmed the miraculous healing of Dehbe’s back. “The doctor said, ‘This is digital proof because three-quarters of your back was gone. If anyone would have a miracle, it would be you.’” It was her second healing miracle.
Her son has also had challenges. His girlfriend had been abusive toward him, complaining about his inability to provide for them as a tree-trimmer. She accused him of strangling her and he spent six months in jail as a result of her allegation (which Dehbe maintains is false). His record made it more difficult to find work and he ultimately spent a year on the streets. Now he’s living with Dehbe, but has been battling depression.
More recently, Dehbe had another seizure, which caused her to fall and break both kneecaps. Because her rare form of cancer had already eaten through the cartilage in her knees, the doctors want to replace both knees, which will involve a 12-week recovery.
“It’s hard for me to accept another surgery,” she says. “I’m trying to accept this challenge for whatever reason God has in this for me,” she says.
She asks people to pray for another healing miracle – this one for her knees. She is also scheduled to have cataract surgery May 19th; currently her vision in both eyes is blurry.
Even though she is bedridden, her mind is active. “I get to pray all day and He always listens,” she says. “In my dreams I walk with Him in the garden.”
“He loves us so much not only in our great times of life, but in our darkest moments, He has promised to get us through any challenge. I have seen that a multitude of times.
“God has given me so many blessings and miracles. He has given me joy all these years. Every morning He brings me songbirds to sing to me. I wish people could know how much I am loved by Him and feel that same love.”