I took the last sip of my morning coffee as orange and red rays from the sunrise began to leak through the curtains. The candle that is faithfully lit each morning still flickered while the soft, gentle rhythm of a chime sang with the wind outside – Levi’s song. Written beneath the wind chime are these words:
“Your grace is sufficient for me; Your strength is made perfect when I am weak. All that I cling to, I lay at Your feet. Your grace is sufficient for me.”
I closed the journal with poured over prayers and thoughts with Jesus and pondered those words from the old hymn sung at Levi’s funeral, reflective of all the ways He has sustained us since that day. A little kick jolted my attention toward the blessing inside of me; looking down with a smile, I softly responded, “good morning, my sweet boy.”
While the first trimester with our rainbow baby was filled with overcoming fears and learning to surrender our second born to Jesus through them, the second trimester overflowed with grace.
Finding out we were pregnant with another boy was the sweetest gift. To be truthful, when we began talking about getting pregnant again, the thought of it being another boy made us question if we could handle it emotionally. But each time I would pray, Holy Spirit reminded me that He knows exactly what we need. And oh, how He knew. . .
From the first days knowing about our second born we began discussing name possibilities. We desire to approach this decision with prayer and intention because we know it is part of our child’s identity and that names are significant to the Lord. We already had a girl name chosen, but it was difficult to think through boy names again.
One evening, just a week before our ultrasound appointment to find out the gender, we sat down for dinner and started the conversation again. “We are getting really close, and we still haven’t chosen a name if it’s a boy. Is there one that has stood out to you?” I asked Christian.
Christian proceeded to share the name Caleb, expressing that it has stayed forefront of his mind. When he began sharing the story of Caleb in the Bible, and what the name means, tears flooded my eyes. I knew Holy Spirit was speaking directly to my heart: this is it — Caleb is who is in my belly.
Caleb means “devoted to God,” and the Biblical story that accompanies the character is exactly what Christian and I had consistently prayed over him – that he would stay wholly devoted to Christ, even in the midst of adversity, and even if he is the only one doing so.
Just days later, we got the confirmation that we are expecting another baby boy. Levi’s little brother, and our redeeming gift from God.
We were so thankful we had a time of honoring Levi’s identity before he was born by hosting a “gender reveal” gathering, and so we held to the tradition with Caleb. This is a time that Christian and I are able to share our child’s name, along with the meaning behind it, and spend time in prayer and celebration over this new life.
Jesus continued to demonstrate His redeeming grace in the weeks following, including the day Levi’s headstone came in to be placed over his grave. I had dreaded this day, knowing the emotions that I would face with it. Christian was working, so I headed to the cemetery alone to watch it be placed. Worship music played softly as I drove, tears streamed down my face, and my heart felt the familiar heaviness. “God, give me strength.”
When I pulled into the cemetery, two men had already began unloading the stone. I let my fingers feel the words engraved:
“Born into Heaven
Levi Christian Good
October 31, 2019
The younger of the two men asked, “is this a relative of yours?” to which I responded, “he is my son.” The man slowly looked away, as if reflecting on his own sorrow, then softly responded, “I lost my son, too. Just two hours after he was born.”
Silently, I thanked God for His beautiful timing, knowing He had orchestrated this very moment because of His grace. I don’t know if this man knew Jesus, but I got to talk about Him and the peace He’s given us through the same, devastating circumstances. Once again, God allowed Levi’s life to be used for His glory.
I drove to the cemetery with a heavy heart, but I left with renewed hope. Not only did God allow the encounter with a man who had experienced the same loss as us, but in His timing, Levi’s headstone came with his little brother growing inside of me. This is God’s sufficient grace.
“Cast your burden on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.” – Psalm 55:22. The verse we engraved on Levi’s headstone, and the same verse displayed on the wall of the hospital room when we found out his heart was no longer beating. As we go into the third trimester, we can proclaim with sincere hearts from our own testimony that these words are true. He has sustained us through loss, and He continues to sustain us through a pregnancy after loss.
We could look to the final weeks ahead and be full of fear, knowing these were the last weeks we had with Levi; and to be sure, these fears will come. Nonetheless we will not allow them to be our final resting place. Instead, we proclaim with restored hearts:
“All that I cling to, I lay at Your feet. Your grace is sufficient for me.”