Advent Meditations  

By Stephanie Selvage

       April 30, 2014, started off as a great day full of excitement, for this was the day that David “Grant” Selvage would join our family. Daniel would have the brother he prayed for and we would be a family of four. After an uneventful pregnancy with seemingly no complications, Grant entered this world at 12:01 pm. Little did we know that all that we had anticipated about bringing him home would quickly be changed when the doctor said he needed to go to the NICU. We had no idea just how sick Grant was or the roller coaster we were about to be on. Grant started out at Baptist East, moved briefly to Baptist South, then on to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham. Grant was diagnosed with Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension in Newborns and was placed on the ECMO machine. As parents you pray for a healthy baby, but as parents of a sick baby you really pray and turn to God.

       In all of the uncertain times we faced, one thing was certain: God would never leave our side. It is often said that God will never give you more than you can handle, and I have to disagree. I believe that God gives you more so that you will turn to HIM for strength, support, and guidance. During Grant’s time at Children’s, we were surrounded by many wonderful people that made the journey easier to endure. The doctors, nurses, chaplains, lab techs, etc., were such a blessing to us as we prayed that God would heal Grant. We had so many people who prayed for us, visited us, and offered us support as we faithfully remained by Grant’s side.

       On May 15, we got the news that no parent wants to hear...”your child will not recover from his sickness.” We as parents made the decision to spend the next two days loving Grant, and praising the God who gave him to us, even for this short time. As a mother it was one of the hardest things I had ever faced, but I was at peace because I knew that I would see him again one day, as God promised those who believe in HIM. It was hard not to question God during this time of sorrow, but I realized that He wasn’t asking me to do anything less than what He did when He gave Jesus’ life to save the world. On May 17, Grant earned his angel wings as I held him, and gave my sweet baby back to his Heavenly Father.

       We believe that Grant’s life served a mighty purpose in the short time he was on Earth, and we rejoice in the fact that God’s will was done and HIS timing was perfect in all of this. Even 7 months later, we still praise God for the time we had with Grant, and for the many lives that were touched because of our sweet son. Grant’s life has taught me many things: to never take others for granted; to love others and serve others as Jesus would; to cherish the time we have with family because we aren’t promised tomorrow; and to lean on God and praise Him in the storms that come our way.

       After the storm we endured with Grant, God is sending us a “Rainbow” to give us hope for the future. Sarah Kathleene Selvage (Sarah Kate) will be joining our family in April (ironically her due date is Grant’s birthday). We pray that God will watch over her in the months ahead, and give us a healthy baby to love. We know that Sarah Kate and Daniel will always have a Guardian Angel watching over them, and those who know Daniel know he needs someone to keep him safe. We can’t wait until God reunites us with Grant in heaven, but until that day we will continue to thank God for all our many blessings.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7 NLT)

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