One Saturday morning Scott Nehring walked into his bank, and as he moved toward the line, collapsed.
His wife Andrea remembers getting the phone call.
“‘Is this Mrs. Nehring?’”
“‘Is your husband Scott?’”
“‘Does he have any health problems?’”
“‘Why? What’s going on?’”
“‘Don’t ask any questions. Does he have any health problems?’”
“‘Not to my knowledge.’
“Then he said, ‘Well, he collapsed at the bank. We’ve got people here working on him.’”
Andrea didn’t know if her husband would live or die, and the turbulent early years of their marriage now seemed insignificant . . .
The couple met in college, and married while still in school. Andrea remembers. “It was kind of a whirlwind romance and we were engaged fairly shortly after we started dating.”
Scott had been keeping a part of his life hidden from Andrea. He cleaned up his act long enough to win her over, but it didn’t last. Scott explains, “I started to do the drugs again. I started to drink very heavily. I started to sleep around. Married man. Months after I got married I started to cheat on my wife and it destroyed her.”
Andrea was devastated. “I just felt sick. Six months in he told me that he wanted a divorce. And I think I found out about the girl about a month after that.”
The couple separated. Andrea left school and moved in with her parents, where she renewed her relationship with Jesus. Over time, she forgave her husband, and started praying that he would give his life to Christ. Andrea says she refused to give up on their marriage. “I’ve been told that you’re not to give up on him. So I didn’t. We prayed a lot. I got my strength from the Lord and from my family.”
After two years, they agreed to get back together and begin working on their marriage. Soon, they had their first child. One night, Scott had a disturbing dream. Scott vividly remembered, “In this dream there were slopes of mud and muck and running filthy water and I was rolling in this stuff. Something grabbed me and pulled me down under the water and I couldn’t break free. I knew that dream was not a dream, but a warning.”
He woke Andrea. She asked him, “Do you want to say the sinner’s prayer? Are you finally ready to give your heart to the Lord?”
“I did.” Scott remembers, “I got down on my knees and I gave myself to Christ and I begged for forgiveness for everything that I’ve done.”
Afterwards, Scott started taking his family to church. But the fighting at home continued. Andrea explains, “He had some internal conflict that he was working out, but that internal conflict, I guess often came out in anger.”
One day Scott, a seemingly healthy 38 year old, walked into the bank, and suffered a massive heart attack. By the time hehit the floor, he was already dead, and time was running out. Amazingly, paramedics were only a block away and arrived at the scene within two minutes. They worked furiously on Scott until finally, they got a heartbeat.
“I had what was known as a widow maker and 4% of the people survive. There was no reason for me to be able to make it through that horrible, horrible thing.” Scott recollects.
Andrea knows that “He couldn’t deny how the Lord choreographed his survival. It was so detailed. And he couldn’t deny it. So he knew that the Lord saved him for a reason.”
Scott spent only a few days in the hospital. When he came home, he was not the same person. “When you die and you come back, that’s what you’re left with. Immediately it was my family, my wife, Christ was the only thing that mattered,” he said. “I became a better father and I became a much better husband.
“Giving myself to Christ and living my life for Him has allowed for me to actually become the man that I should have been all along,” he said.
Andrea tearfully describes the change. “He really has come full circle. And, I’m very grateful.”
Scott concludes, “When you give yourself to Christ, it’s not an issue of whether you deserve it or not. You don’t. But it’s an issue of His grace and His gift. And it’s a beautiful thing.”