Michael O’Brien, Columbia, Tenn.

Total eligible bills
$140,526
Provider discounts
$91,491
Total bills shared
$49,035

From the April 2020 issue of Heartfelt Magazine.

I’m a former lead singer of NewSong, a Christian band that founded Winter Jam Tour Spectacular, the U.S.’s largest annual Christian music tour. It was an honor to serve God through music ministry during my seven-year tenure.

Music has always been one of my gifts and is something I know I’m called to use to stir hearts toward God. However, spending more than 225 nights per year on the road takes a toll—physically, mentally and even spiritually.

I knew God was calling me out of NewSong so I could be with my wife and my kids more. I knew I would still do music, but I had no idea what that would look like. We stepped out in faith and trusted the Lord to provide as I learned how to love my wife as Christ loved the church and become the spiritual leader of my house.

With His guidance and grace, Heidi and I reset our family’s priorities, significantly adjusted our calendar and focused on reconnecting spiritually. Even with those changes, God blessed me with producing five recorded projects and traveling around the country to share the Gospel.

Two years into our new way of life, I began experiencing shortness of breath, dizziness and lethargy. After a series of tests, doctors diagnosed me with atrial fibrillation (also called AFib). It’s an irregular heartbeat that can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications.

The doctors placed me on medication and the symptoms subsided. In 2019, however, medication was no longer effective; my doctor suggested undergoing an ablation procedure.

I was nervous about the cost my medical treatment would incur. I wondered if CHM would share our expenses for my pre-existing condition. However, CHM has programs to share qualifying medical costs for pre-existing conditions. I also learned that after completing three years of CHM Gold membership, maintained pre-existing conditions are no longer classified as pre-existing and are shared normally through the member’s chosen participation level. (Editor’s note: Limitations apply for pre-existing conditions. For more information, please see CHM Guidelines Z and AA.)

I called CHM to discuss my situation and mention that the doctors were asking for upfront payment even though I was a self-pay patient. CHM’s staff graciously talked with the healthcare provider to make sure that I would get the treatment I needed. The staff even negotiated my original $140,000 bill to just $40,000! Likewise, the doctor’s charges were reduced from $4,000 to $1,690.

I’m amazed at the savings we saw through these discounts, but I’m most grateful that the procedure changed my life drastically. Just three months later, I saw substantial improvement. My heart remained in rhythm and I no longer needed medication.

Throughout this experience, God taught me that He is in control.

I’m still learning to trust Him in all things, and I’m grateful for the lessons I can take away from the last several months.

CHM is a huge blessing and, while there’s no way to truly thank ministry members for their financial help, I can help others by sharing the message at my own music events. I’m passionate about providing CHM promotional pamphlets at my concerts because I want others to benefit like I did from this amazing ministry. I’m truly a CHM believer.

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