Woman has stroke on stage at Hixson church after sharing story of hardships

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Once Chastity is released from the hospital, she will require full-time nursing and rehab. (Image: Abba's House)

A woman who stood in front of her entire church to explain how she says God has changed her life nearly died while telling her story.

Chastity Watts told her congregation at Abba's House that she came to Chattanooga at one of the most difficult times in her life, not knowing she would be in the hospital at the end of her testimony.

Chastity got off a Greyhound bus in the Scenic City three and a half years ago with nothing: she was homeless, pregnant, and addicted alcohol.

She says the support of a new husband, the people of Abba's House, and the love of God helped her turn her life around.

However, just as she found her voice and began sharing her journey at Sunday service on November 19th, a sudden stroke left her barely able to speak.

During her testimony in front of 1500 people, she suffered a massive brain bleed. At the end, she stumbled into the arms of her close friend, Theresa Biggs.

Biggs thought Chastity was simply nervous about speaking before the crowd.

"She literally dropped the mic and I just put my arms around her to steady her because her knees were buckling," said Biggs.

When they arrived at the hospital, doctors told her Chastity had had a stroke.

"The doctor said, 'She's going to die.' Those were his words," she recalled.

Chastity just re-married two months ago.

Sharing her story of how her church changed her life was the last thing she planned to do before moving to Reno with her new husband, Jimmy Watts.

He was already in Nevada when a surgeon called him for permission to operate on her brain.

"I didn't think she was going to make it," said Jimmy. "I at least wanted to be here and hold her hand and tell her how much I love her."

Chastity survived her first surgery, but Jimmy and Theresa say doctors were not hopeful. They turned to prayer.

"It was just miracle after miracle, improvement after improvement. The doctors couldn't believe it," said Jimmy.

She has made tremendous progress. Still, she has a long way to go.

Jimmy has been told that she may never fully recover and that he should not get his hopes up.

"I'm trying to put the fear aside," he said. "No matter what the outcome is, I will be by her side."

Chastity's family and friends say their faith in God has only grown stronger.

"That's not the last time she will stand on that stage. She's going to tell the rest of her story," said Biggs.

Once Chastity is released from the hospital, she will require full-time nursing and rehab.

Since Chastity and her husband can't work right now, friends started a Go Fund Me page to raise money for living and medical expenses.

If you would like to donate, go here.

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