The Christian Broadcasting Network

The 700 Club with Pat Robertson

Michael and Krista Branch

A year ago, long-time committed Christians, Michael and Krista Branch lived in a suburb of Colorado Springs with their three young children. Michael and Krista saw The Passion on its opening day. They were very moved by it and talked about it over the next few days. On Saturday Michael told his brother-in-law that he had been very struck by what Mary went through losing her son.

Sunday morning the two older kids were in their high chairs. Michael was doing work on his computer, and Krista decided to bathe Kenna, as she was messy from a runny nose. Normally, they unscrew the stopper from the tub and let all three kids play in the shower. In the hurry to get ready for church, they neglected to unscrew the stopper and just pulled it out instead. Krista didn't realize that Kenna had sat on the stopper and pushed it down so the tub was slowly filling with water.

Krista washed Kenna off and left her to play in the tub. Michael called Krista to help him access a Web site on their computer. As Krista helped her husband, she listened to Kenna and went back into the bathroom to check on her several times. Then Krista was out of the bathroom for perhaps four minutes. When Krista went back into the bathroom, she saw about four inches of water in the tub and yanked back the shower curtain to see Kenna floating face down. Krista was sure Kenna was dead.

Krista let out a wail, grabbed Kenna, and Michael came running. She didn't look like their daughter -- she looks gray like a corpse. Immediately Krista called 911.

Michael says Kenna felt like rubber, and he knew she was not in her body …she was gone. She had no breath, no heartbeat, and no pulse. Immediately his thoughts were, "It's hopeless. Prepare for the funeral. You're going to be the father of just two children now." Then he recognized these thoughts as a barrage of lies. This was an attack from Satan.

As he administered CPR he began to groan uncontrollably, and he believes it was his spirit groaning in words he could not express. He could not pray in his own intellect. While there was fault on their part for not respecting the laws of water, they had opened themselves up to an attack, and the thief had come into their home to steal, kill and destroy that morning.

Then both Michael and Krista began to flash back to the scene of Jesus being flogged in The Passion. The scripture, "By His stripes we are healed," ran through Michael's mind as did, "The chastisement of our peace was upon Him." He knew that Satan was trying to steal their peace, and he was trying to destroy their lives. God told Michael, "You don't have to take the punishment." By those stripes he knew they had the authority to take back what was theirs. Michael began to yell, "You are not going to steal my daughter. You are not going to steal my daughter."

In a drowning victim, brain damage will usually occur after four to six minutes. It is estimated that Kenna was without oxygen for eight to 10 minutes or more.

Detective Kerr was the first to arrive and say Kenna was unconscious. While he and other deputies were attempting to revive Kenna, paramedics arrived and continued CPR, but not expecting much. They feared Kenna was indeed dead and, if revived, would have serious brain damage.

An ambulance rushed Kenna to a nearby schoolyard where a Flight for Life helicopter whisked her down the mountain to Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs. As the paramedics tried to start an IV on Kenna, she let them know how much she didn't like it.

By the time the helicopter arrived at the hospital, Kenna was breathing on her own and getting fidgety. Doctors were very concerned about brain damage and performed a CT scan. Michael and Krista called many, many people to pray.

The scan came back normal, and the doctor told them how lucky they were. Michael and Krista know it was Jesus who brought their daughter back to them.

A year later Kenna is a typical two year old who can count to ten, knows part of the alphabet, and is a very outgoing and playful child. Michael says this incident taught them to take stock in how they were raising their children. While they have always prayed over their children, they learned anew how important this type of prayer is. They realized they are in a spiritual battle for their children. They have a new sympathy for anyone going through such a trauma.

They are thankful The Passion scenes were so fresh in their minds. Michael says he had a glimpse of what Mary went through with the loss of her son as he experienced the crushing brief loss of his child.

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