CANTON—It was a typical Sunday afternoon in January. The TV was humming a sports game as Andrew Steinbeck was getting ready to go back to college. However, it was unusual because his little sister, 14-year-old Shannon, was resting because of a headache.
“Suddenly Shannon appeared in the doorway,” Carla Steinbeck, Shannon’s mom and archivist at Culver Stockton College, said. “She was talking to us and she stopped mid-sentence and fell face first with no effort to catch herself.”
When she reached Shannon, Carla rolled her over.
“She was unresponsive although her eyes were wide open and her lip was bleeding from biting it on the way down,” Carla said. “Even today, Shannon doesn’t remember anything between her nap and the ambulance.”
Dan Steinbeck, Shannon’s father, bi-vocational pastor of Southern Baptist Fellowship Church in Wayland and editor of the Press News Journal, could see God’s moving along their path.
“I knew God was in control,” he said. “I didn’t know the end result, but we could see His working in so many ways.”
Shannon was tested at the hospital with an EKG and a CAT scan.
“When the doctor saw the screen,” Carla said, “we were told that it looked like she had a brain tumor about the size of a ping pong ball. It was especially scary for me because I had lost my older brother to a brain tumor three years ago. But I felt the presence of God. I prayed that God would bring my Shannon back. I wanted him to restore the wonderful, young woman she is.”
A two-hour drive to Children’s Hospital in St. Louis for surgery was the next stop for Shannon.
“I rode all the way to St. Louis on prayer,” Dan said. “We were well supported by our friends, family, church and community. We literally had people praying all over the globe for Shannon.”
Shannon described her state the night before surgery as being “perfect peace.”
“I called a friend,” she said, “to tell her that I wouldn’t be in school the next day and I thought of one word, FROG, to fully rely on God. I just knew I was going to be fine.”
After the five-hour surgery, the Steinbecks got the word.
“It wasn’t a tumor,” Carla said. “It was a tangle of blood vessels called a cavernoma. We were excited when we got to see her and tell her. We all were praising God.”
Carla knows her specific prayer was answered.
“This was a faith builder for me. He reminded me that He is with us and always at work. He answered my specific prayer and gave my same girl back to me.”
Shannon is back playing softball. She missed some school, but she was able to keep her grades up.
“God just wants me to be completely healed,” she said. “I’ll tell the story, but God gets the glory.”
VICKI STAMPS/contributing writer