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Was actress Jennifer Garner impacted by a miracle?

Jennifer Garner at the opening of The Invention of Lying at the Toronto Film Festival in 2009. Photo: Reza Vaziri/Flickr/Creative Commons

Jennifer Garner at the opening of The Invention of Lying at the Toronto Film Festival in 2009. Photo: Reza Vaziri/Flickr/Creative Commons

Actress Jennifer Garner, 43, recently announced that she and her three children are starting to attend church as a direct result of Garner’s starring role in the Christian movie Miracles from Heaven. Garner said they have rarely missed a Sunday since.

Jennifer who  separated from her husband Ben Affleck comes from a Christian background and growing up lived for a few years in Calgary, Alberta.

Garner made her big break playing a CIA officer in the ABC spy-thriller Alias where she won a Golden Globe and received three Emmy nominations for her performance.

She has also shown up on the big screen acting in movies such a Daredevil, Juno, Dallas Buyers Club and recently Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day.

Miracles made from Heaven, produced by Affirm Film that lists popular pastor T.D. Jakes as one of its producers, is scheduled for release March 16, 2016. In the movie, Jennifer plays Christy Beam, the real-life mother of a young girl named Annabelle who was miraculously spared serious injury after falling down the cavity of a large, hollowed-out cottonwood tree on their Texas property on December 30, 2011.

Anna, then 9, along with her sister had climbed the tree when Anna fell the estimated three stories. It took emergency personnel several hours to pull her out after concocting a rope harness.

After being taken to the hospital, other than a few bumps and bruises, doctors could find nothing wrong with her. Normally in these type of falls there are broken bones or in worst case scenarios — paralysis or death.

One doctor quipped:

“I guess someone up there was looking out for her.”

But that wasn’t even the main-event miracle.

It was later when she was home that Anna told her mother what happened while lying at the bottom of the tree. She told her mom she went to heaven and sat on Jesus’ lap. Jesus told Anna that there was things He wanted to do on earth and that she would be rescued.

According to her mother’s note, Jesus also told Anna “you will be totally fine. There will be nothing wrong with you.”

Then an angel showed up with a light and shone it in the darkness comforting her for the hours she was down there.

Typically, such accounts are often dismissed and attributed to head trauma or lack of oxygen. But there was something different about this incident.

Prior to falling down the tree, Anna suffered from ‘pseudo-obstruction motility disorder (POMD) and ‘antral hypomotility disorder. Because of these diseases Anna experienced tremendous pain and has been in and out of  hospital several times.

Incurable, POMD stops the contractions from occurring in the intestines which are needed to push food through the intestinal tract. When they are out of sync or quit working a person is unable to absorb nutrition and move food. The symptoms include explosive diarrhea, vomiting, severe abdominal pain, constipation and weight loss.

The disease is very serious and can result in muscle loss, infections and malnutrition. Because of it, Anna was on  a restricted diet of fluid and soft food and taking ten medications a day.

At times, Anna told her mom she wished she could die and be with Jesus.

But shortly after the accident, all the symptoms of the disease stopped. Amazed, the doctors finally concluded Anna had somehow been healed of this incurable disorder and decided to gradually take her off the medications.

Today, Anna is completely clear of symptoms. She is off medication, no longer requires pain killers and eats whatever she wants.

One of the roles of the Holy Spirit is to confirm Jesus and God’s word with signs and wonders.

Shortly after Jesus commissioned His disciples, we have this interesting statement:

20 And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the word by the signs that followed. (Mark 16:20 NASV)

The Greek word for follow means “immediately after” so there is no doubt of the intent and connection.  The Greek word confirm “bebaioo” means simply to prove or establish the truth of what was spoken.

And this is exactly what happened in the Book of Acts. The apostles would preach the gospel and miracles and signs confirmed their word was from God.

So when I see Anna being miraculously healed of an incurable disease it causes a person to take a second look at the full story.

And these signs and wonders also caused another response. People became Christians and involved in the New Testament church.



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