Brian Fleming: The Protection of Prayer
By Randy Rudder
The 700 Club
Brian Fleming knows firsthand the power of a praying woman or two. He grew up in Florida and was intending to pursue a medical career.
“I had planned on going to college and becoming a doctor,” Brian tells The 700 Club. “I just always wanted to help people.”
But all that changed on September 11, 2001.
“I was in my second period Spanish class at about 10:00 in the morning, and I remember the teacher turning the TV on. I saw the second airplane fly into the buildings in New York City. It was really at that point I just felt as if I would be a hypocrite if I didn’t commit just a few years of my life to protecting and preserving the American freedom that we all enjoy every single day.”
He enlisted in the Army after high school and was deployed to Kandahar, Afghanistan. In April of 2006, Brian got his first taste of guerilla warfare.
“It was about 7:00 in the morning, and my vehicle ran over a double stack of anti-tank mines that were buried in the road. It threw our 15,000-pound vehicle about ten feet to the side of the road. I remember as the vehicle landed, I was sitting there. I could see the gray and black smoke and the dust. I sat there and thought to myself, ‘I think we just got blown up.’”
Incredibly, Brian was unharmed in the attack.
“I opened my door, stepped out and I walked away without a scratch on me. We had two men injured that day, but nobody died.”
A few days later, Brian received an email from his mother.
“Basically what she said was, ‘Brian, a couple of days ago, I had this strange, intense feeling to pray for your protection.’ I thought that kind of cool, because I had just gotten blown up two days ago. It turned out it was within just an hour or two of that explosive going off.’”
It wouldn’t be the first time that Brian would experience the power of prayer.
“The Fourth of July weekend, I was here in Fort Worth, Texas, with my family,” Jamie Fleming says, “and I just felt a real urge to fast for him and pray. My mother confirmed it to me that I needed to fast and pray.”
Just two weeks later, the convoy Brian was traveling in was attacked by a suicide bomber. This time, he was unable to walk away.
“The first thing I remember after gaining consciousness was that I was lying in a ditch on the side of the road,” Brian says. “My helmet was no longer on my head. I couldn’t find my weapon. I had a fountain of blood pouring out of my face. My hands had been burned.”
“Initially, I got a call from the Army,” Jamie recalls. “It was about 9:00 in the morning. I immediately started freaking out, praying, crying and calling his mother, my mother, his grandparents, my grandparents—just everyone I could think of, to be praying for him.”
He was brought home from Afghanistan and taken to a hospital in San Antonio. Although the burns were very severe and the doctors were concerned about possible brain trauma, Brian was alive. His recovery, however, was long and excruciating.
“They did a process called debridement, which is basically, they have to get all the burned skin off the burn sites. If they didn’t, I may have died of infection,” Brian explains. “I asked if they could put me out, just give me some anesthetic. They refused because they said they didn’t know if I would wake up or not.”
Eventually his wounds began to heal and he was released. Brian was later awarded a purple heart and given an honorable medical discharge. Today, he is using his experiences as a platform to share his faith through speaking engagements and his writing. He always shares with audiences how grateful he is to be surrounded by praying women.
“I always tell people that God tells women everything,” he says. “I do believe that my prayers helped him survive. Proverbs 3:5: ‘Trust the Lord with all you heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.’ I just really hold dear to that Scripture. It was very hard to do, but I knew I had to, because it was in God’s hands. There was nothing I could do, but pray.”
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