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Palliative Care – A Devotional

Palliative Care – A Devotional

Johnny Teague
Baby Premature Hospital Doctor Parents

The birth happened a few years ago in Galveston County. The news event did not receive much attention. A baby was born to a young couple who lived in that area. This should have been good news, but the baby was born three months premature. The pregnancy had been difficult. This young mother had lost a baby a few years before. Thankfully, the couple had three beautiful kids to go home to which brought them comfort. Sadly, this latest baby’s development was worse than the last one that was lost.

The doctor delivered the premature baby. The parents knew in the pit of their stomachs the news would not be good. The news was not. The doctor sat beside the exhausted mom’s bed, next to a chair beside the young dad. He began to explain the situation. This baby’s heart had not developed and had a hole. The baby’s nervous system had not developed. The sad news on top of this was the baby’s brain had not fully developed either. The couple began to cry. After a few moments to contain themselves, they asked the doctor, “What do we do?”

Psalm 139:13-14: “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

The doctor explained the baby would probably not live more than a few hours. If the baby did survive, the likelihood of a few weeks was unlikely. Even if the baby could survive longer, the baby would be unable to breathe on its own, feed itself, or ever walk. He said,

“I suggest you leave it with us. We will give it palliative care and when it passes, we will give you a call. You can then make arrangements for a little funeral if you would like.”

They were a little incensed the doctor was calling their baby “it.” However, they understood the doctor was trying to give them an easier acceptance of what he felt they needed to do.

The parents did not take but a minute to answer. They said,

“God has a purpose for everything. If our baby lives an hour, we want to be here. If our baby lives a day, we want to be here. If our baby lives for a year or more, we will feed our little one, we will clothe our little one, and we will gladly do what we need to do to help our baby breathe. Whatever the Lord wants to show us in this or teach us through this, we will honor Him.”

I am glad this couple decided to do that. You see, I married that baby. That baby is my wife, Lori Baklik Teague. God brought her through all of that. He healed the hole in her heart. He helped her learn to walk though she wore leg braces for a long time as a child. God helped her become the loving, impactful, and productive daughter, woman, wife, mom, teacher, and role model she is today.

Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Never doubt what God can do. Never give in. Never give up. Know whatever God brings to us, He brings to teach us, to help us, to change us, and to bless us. He works all things together for good for them who love Him.

Romans 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

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