By Del Duduit
Little Braxton was dead.
The three-year-old son of Seth and Dawn Smith had accidentally drowned in the family swimming pool July 8. When he was pulled from the water, he wasn’t breathing, and no pulse could be found.
A 9-1-1 call was made, and Dawn started praying amidst the chaos.
Seth was working at the Southern Ohio Medical Center (SOMC) Urgent Care in Wheelersburg when he got the call. His neighbor told him Braxton was in trouble and to get home immediately.
“I thought it was a joke at first,” he said. “You just never expect that kind of a call.”
He grabbed his keys and headed to his house in Sciotoville, about 12 minutes away. The emergency squad beat him by only seconds. Little Braxton had no signs of life for about 20 minutes. A bag mask was placed over his lifeless face to try to encourage breathing.
“I was praying all the way home,” Seth said. “God, please don’t let this be the case. Let my son live.”
Paramedics continued to work on him, while his family prayed for a miracle.
“And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.” Genesis 2:7
Ba-boom. A pulse. Suddenly a sign of life. He was alive!
Braxton was taken to SOMC and then life-flighted to Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus.
“I asked the doctors if my baby was going to be okay,” Dawn said. “And they couldn’t tell me until more tests were run.”
Brain damage was a concern. Braxton had been dead for several minutes, with no oxygen to the brain. Under normal circumstances, when the brain is deprived of oxygen for five to six minutes, it becomes damaged, and the heart stops pumping – sending the patient into cardiac arrest.
But this was not a normal circumstance. The Lord was on call and roaming the halls at Children’s Hospital. Indeed, this was a case for the Great Physician.
“I’m in awe of how big my God really is.”
Braxton was initially ventilated. Then when he was switched over to a BiPAP machine, he let everyone know he was there with a loud cry. That was music to Dawn’s ears and heart. It was as if he was saying, “I’m okay and get me outta here.”
“As a mom, you love it when you hear your baby cry for the first time,” she said. “But when he let out that cry, there was never a better cry because I knew God was on the scene.”
Everyone at Children’s was witnessing a miracle. Four days later, Braxton was able to go home. He was perfectly fine. He has no brain damage. He is a normal little boy.
But what did he experience during those moments when he was not responding? Did his soul leave this earth? Did he see anything or anyone?
Was there a heaven? Was the Lord there?
Dad needed to know. A few days passed, and Seth took Braxton to McDonald’s and asked him what he remembered about the incident. He posed the question to his toddler — did you see Jesus?
Braxton said yes, and added the Lord has white hair.
Seth followed up with, “Did Jesus speak to you? What did He say?”
“Hi Braxton, go home,” the child replied.
“I came unglued when Seth told me that,” Dawn said. She ran into her son’s room and asked Braxton more questions. “What were his hands like?” she wanted to know.
“Bleeding,” Braxton answered.
He really saw the Lord. Just like the movie, Heaven is for Real.
What three-year-old is going to say that unless it happened? Children that age cannot help but be honest. He had to have seen the Savior because there is no other explanation for what he saw or how he described it to his parents.
Do we need more proof than that? “But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 19:14
“To think my baby saw the King of Kings just amazes me,” Dawn said. “I’m in awe of how big my God really is.”
And Little Braxton is quite the singer too. His family was at Rubyville Community Church this past Sunday night, and he sang a song and quoted scripture with his older brother Brayden, who is five. They brought the house down.
After meeting him, it’s amazing to realize the miracle God performed in his life. The Lord must have something big planned for little Braxton. Come to think of it, he does have a certain glow and peace about him, along with an ornery smile.
“Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” Hebrews 12:14
Do you believe Braxton? What would you do if you came face to face with the Lord? Not everyone gets a second chance. Do you think God is trying to send us a message through this little boy? Do you believe in heaven? Are you ready?