by Jennie Smith
Secondary Assistant Principal
and Mom to Levi
It was a beautiful Sunday morning. It was Spring, life was great – I was married to the man I had prayed for all my life. I had the teaching job I always wanted, and now I was one month away from delivering my first child. Life could not have been more blissful. Brent and I had not slept well the night before, so we decided to skip Sunday School (shhhh….don’t tell anybody). While we were laying in bed resting, I felt the first pangs of childbirth. I wrote them off as my first Braxton-Hicks….I was only 36 weeks after all.
But the pangs continued…through church, through my traditional Sunday afternoon nap, and by 2:00 that afternoon, Brent and I were in the hospital preparing for the birth of our son. We were nervous, but thrilled! At 7:11 pm, on April 22, the on-call doctor held my child and before she laid him on my tummy she said..
“Did you have an ultrasound?”
“Yes,” I said. I expected her to follow with…”Did you know it was a boy?”
But instead she said, “Did you know about the cleft?”
“No,” I said.
The next 2 minutes were a blur. I knew she was talking to me, but I couldn’t get it… “repairable….surgery…lungs sound good…”
And then she showed me my beautiful, first born son.
There was a hole in his face…
…a dark, black hole that I didn’t understand.
But I fell in love anyway.
|Levi – just a few days old|
After meeting with the plastic surgeon a few weeks later, and getting a grim picture of multiple surgeries over the course of his life, I was overwhelmed. A wise man and his wife stopped by that very day (yes…it was Mr. B) and I asked if it was ok to ask God “Why?” Why did MY child have to go through this? Why does everyone else get perfect babies and I’m asked to walk this road?
He pointed me to the story of the man born blind from John 9. The disciples asked Jesus why…why was this man born blind? Was it his parents who sinned or was it because of his own sin? They were looking for the answer to my very question…why was Levi Brandon Smith born with a cleft? Was it my fault?
“‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the work of God might be revealed in his life'” (verse 3).
|Levi (with his wonderful smile), Caleb, Drew|
Is it ok to ask God “why?” Sure…but He’s already given us His reply! For a Christian, this is the answer to every “Why?” This happened so that the work of God might be revealed in (fill in the blank here)’s life. In Levi’s life. In my life. In your life.
And God has been revealed in Levi’s life – His work is very evident. If you know Levi, be sure to ask him how he has seen God’s hand. He has a wonderful testimony. We no longer ask why Levi has a cleft. We simply thank God for the opportunity to see His glory.