The Ransons: Faith of a Child
By Jewel Graham
The 700 Club
It was summer of 2001. The Ranson family was making their way through Texas on vacation when Jennifer noticed her seven-year-old son carter was crying.
“He just had tears streaming down his face, and I’m like, ‘Carter, are you okay?’ I thought the kids were fighting or I missed something. He said, ‘Mommy, we have to do something to help these hungry people.’”
The family had just passed through the small, destitute town of Deweyville. Jennifer recalls, “God started working something in him and in his heart, and he would not let it go.”
Back home after vacation, Carter called a meeting with his parents.
“He started describing to us something that had to be a God idea,” she says. “So he goes, ‘What I want to do is make Thanksgiving food boxes and bring them to Deweyville.’”
Carter came up with a plan. He sent a letter to everyone he knew asking for donations. He also worked for his dad in the family lighting business.
“That year we took 25 food boxes to Deweyville,” Jennifer says. “When the people leave, they really have everything that it takes to have a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner just like we would have at our home.”
Carter put together food boxes for the next three years, but his plans came to a halt when Jennifer got a call from her husband, Tim.
“He was like, ‘Carter’s sick. He has really bad diarrhea and is throwing up.’ When I got home, I came into the house, and Carter was in the restroom. Something was not right.”
Jennifer and Tim rushed 10-year-old Carter to the emergency room. Several difficult days passed before doctors found out what was wrong.
“They came in one day, and they said it was E. coli. It was the worst type of E. coli that you can get,” she says. “There’s nothing you can do. You can’t treat for E. coli. You just have to treat the symptoms it produces. For over, I guess, a week and a half or so, Carter was still violently ill. We would just sit there and just pray that our little boy would be okay… that our little boy would walk out of the hospital.”
After two weeks in the hospital, the Ransons became desperate.
“It was literally several times an hour that we were dragging the I.V. into the bathroom and helping him,” Jennifer recalls. “He was just so sick.”
There was no relief for Carter, and he couldn’t eat. Then, the news got worse.
She says, “The first time the word ‘fatal’ came out of the doctor’s mouth, I couldn’t believe it. I had no clue what else he said, because that’s the only word I heard.”
Tim sent out an urgent email asking for prayer. That night a group gathered at church to pray.
“Hundreds of people that love God passionately joined their prayers with thousands of people praying around the world, and we believe that God gave us our miracle.”
Jennifer went home for the first time in weeks to get a decent night’s sleep. The next morning, the phone rang.
“Tim called me and said, 'Carter wants Krispy Kreme doughnuts.' The child has not asked for anything to eat in weeks, and he wants what?” Jennifer laughs. “The nurses said he has to eat some other things first, but bring the doughnuts. I couldn’t believe it. I walked back into the hospital room with the Krispy Kreme doughnuts. As I walked into that room, that little boy was back, and God had given us the miracle that we had prayed for.”
Three days later the Ransons walked out of the hospital. Now 13, Carter has shown no side effects from the infection.
“It revealed to me that there’s a need,” Carter says. “Because I was in the hospital, I had very good healthcare and I knew that people all around the world don’t have that. They’re sicker than me. So I feel like God wants me to help. God told me through E. coli there’s a real need in the world and that we need to help.”
Jennifer says, “After Carter had E. coli, it was amazing what God did in his life. It was amazing to see the faith [that] was stretched so far when he was in the hospital. It was amazing to see just his passion for God and the things of God grow.”
“I definitely want to be a light," Carter says. "I want people to see that Jesus lives in me. I want to make a difference in my small ways. I definitely want to see that people see the love of God in me.”
He adds, “God loves you, and He definitely has a purpose for your life. He is always with you through every dark spot, and He is always going to love you no matter what. There’s nothing you can do to make God not love you.”
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