His Name Is Samuel

Are my life circumstances important? Do the reasons for what I did matter? I made a legal choice to end his life. Without fear of criminal charges, I ordered his execution. I chose death for the innocent.

It seemed as if I’d moved on in my ordinary life without repercussions or regret. I seldom thought about the child or what I had done. It was over. I told myself I wasn’t a bad person. According to the doctor, it was only a blob of tissue.

Ten years later, as I studied for my bachelor’s degree, a picture in my biology textbook reached out, grabbed me, and taunted. Six weeks old, read the caption describing the embryo with a distinct heart and form. This was not a mere blob of tissue. 

Amidst my discomfort, I pressed forward quickly to return to my make-believe world. I couldn’t do anything about what I had done. I kept telling myself I was still a good person.

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a nun. My favorite cousin frequently talked about God, but I was disappointed when she got pregnant before she was married. We were the same age, and she was supposed to be the good one. 

Shortly after the condemning embryo picture tortured my soul, my 18-year-old nephew killed himself. I was more certain than ever that God wasn’t real.

Two years later, messengers from God began to water the seeds planted within me as a child. God sent a woman named Jill into my life. She was in love with Jesus and couldn’t stop gushing and praising Him for every little instance in her life. I had an electrolysis business, and she was a new client. We spent several hours together every week. I had to attempt to be polite because she was my customer. While I admired her boldness about such an unpopular topic, I was often angry with her, too. And on many occasions I angrily shared my hatred of God and Christians.

Discovering the word of God

After about six months with Jill, I decided to write a story about my nephew who had killed himself. I wrote using his voice. At one point, I wrote, “And God said . . .”

I thought, I don’t know what God would say. I don’t know anything about God. I knew if I wanted to write about this, I had to do research.

I wondered if the Bible would tell me anything, so I went to the library and looked at the Bibles they had. I chose one, but the words didn’t inspire me. I decided to ask Jill for her guidance.

When I told her what I was working on and the problem I had trying to read the version I had found, she about fell off the electrolysis table. She gave me an NIV study Bible and suggested I begin reading the book of John. That’s when God’s living water began to reach the depths of dry roots buried deep in unknown and impossible-to-reach places. Seeds sprouted and began a growth in me that would never end. 

It surprised me that I was eager to find out what was in the Bible, and I found myself wanting to read the whole thing. 


Without me asking, and even amidst my resistance, God lovingly showed Himself to me. For so many years I was sure there was no God; thankfully, I was wrong. 

I kept thinking about my baby, but there was no apparent struggle about my murderous sin. God knew my evil past and still chose to love me. Some day in heaven I would meet the child I threw away. 

Although God’s promise for a heavenly reunion with my child seemed sufficient, He wanted to give me more.

As they handed out a single red rose to each mother during their Mother’s Day service at Shema Yisrael—a congregation of born-again Jews and Gentiles worshipping together—I remained seated without much thought about the meaning of Mother’s Day. After all, I was not a mother. My friend Dauren—who also was not a mother—stood to receive a rose. It seemed odd, but I had learned to expect such behavior from her. 

She approached me and offered her rose to me. Her words were difficult to understand. She said, “God wants you to know that you are a mother, and He wants you to have this rose as a sign that your child loves you.” I didn’t know what to think, but I thanked my friend for her thoughtfulness.

When I arrived home, I discarded the rose, as I had my child long ago. Why did I do that? I wondered. Well, I wasn’t a mother, so maybe I shouldn’t have received the rose. Realizing what I had done to God’s gift, I regretted my actions. I couldn’t restore the rose any more than I could restore my child. 

As I cried before God, I looked for His answer in Scripture. At that stage of my walk with God, He often spoke to me through His word. I randomly opened the Bible to the book of Samuel and read: “She conceived and, at the end of her pregnancy, bore a son whom she named Samuel. ‘Because I asked the Lord for him.’”  

My heart ached as though a sword pierced through the tender flesh. Without a doubt, I knew I had a son, and his name was Samuel. 

I then had a loving vision from my Savior. Before me opened a door above a chasm, and I saw him. He was a fine young man, raised by God Himself. Samuel spoke sweet words to me that I expect to hear again: “Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.” 

My struggle wasn’t that I didn’t believe in God’s forgiveness; it was that I didn’t know how to receive great and wonderful things from Him.  

I wept for a long time over God’s goodness to me—an undeserving sinner saved and cherished by the love and grace of God. I continue to regularly learn more about God. I look forward to meeting Him and my son when I cross over from this world to the next.

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About the author

Patricia Casey

Patricia Casey is currently attending SNHU for her master’s in English and Creative Writing. Her poetry, commentaries, and short stories have appeared or are forthcoming in The Fear Beast & Other Short Stories, Muddy River Poetry Review, and War Cry.