Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Life Can Change In An Instant

One year ago this month, I watched anxiously as my wife, Nicol, waited on the results of a home pregnancy test. Once she saw the results, there was no need for her to say a word. Her beeming eyes shouted, and her only-a-mother-can-smile-that-way expression told me what I was hoping to hear. Still, the verbal confirmation that I needed came quickly. "It's positive!" she gushed.

We relived our celebration from a few years earlier, when we had discovered that we were expecting our first child. We hugged. We jumped up and down. We congratulated each other. We laughed. We even shed a few happy tears. A group hug came next as we welcomed our daughter, Summer, to the party. Her inquisitive eyes looked up at us, seemingly wondering "what in the world has gotten into you two?" So we scooped her up in our arms and told her that she was going to be a big sister. It seemed obvious that she didn't grasp the significance of the news, but how could she? She was only 14 months old.

As I remember it, our celebration ended as we knelt beside the bed for a brief moment of prayer, thanking God for the incredible, miraculous gift of life. Another child... and who knows, maybe even a son. My heart couldn't help but go there.

It was a moment I will never forget.

Utter joy.

Life had changed in an instant.

Dreams were fulfilled.

New dreams were birthed.

Four months ago, on March 17 just before 9:00pm, our little man, Gregory Luke, was born. He came a little early, via c-section, because my wife, well, as her doc says, "makes big babies." (Our daughter was over 9 pounds; and it seems to run in her family because Nicol's siblings were all 9+ pounders too!) Anyway, our son had arrived. Mom did great. Big Sis was excited (the first thing she said when she saw him was, "Hold it!" - her way of saying "I want to hold him!" We got a good laugh out of her calling baby brother "it."). Grammy and Grampy, and Nana and Tata were thrilled. And Dad? I was proud... real proud.

Nine weeks ago, on May 27 at about 10:15pm, I heard Nicol's panicked, horrified voice shouting, "Oh my God! Oh my God! He's not breathing. Greg, come quick!"

Part of me would like to describe the scene to you. Part of me doesn't want to. Part of me simply can't. Maybe later. But probably never.

The short of it is that I sprinted up the stairs, and once I reached the top I saw Nicol holding Luke. There was no need for her to say anything. Her terrified eyes and only-a-mother-could-feel-so-desperate expression told me everything a parent would never want to hear. It was the polar opposite of the joy we had experienced when we found out Luke had been conceived. And then this gut-wrenchingly obvious fact nearly brought me to my knees... our lives had been changed forever.

Despite our efforts to resuscitate him, as well as those of the first responders, EMT's, and ER team, Luke was gone. No warning. No explanation. No opportunity to change it. Gone.

It was a moment I will never forget... as long as I live.


Utter horror. Excruciating pain. Anguish.

Life had changed in an instant.

Dreams were shattered.

New dreams were stolen before ever birthed.

Life can change in an instant... ours certainly has.












163 comments:

Eric and Emily said...

Tears are streaming down my face, I can't imagine this kind of loss, but you have been in my heart and on my mind for many weeks. I am a reader of Angie's blog. Love, Emily

Eric and Emily said...

I'm praying for your family!

krista said...

Greg and Nicol, you two will only be the ones to know the pain of losing Luke, because he was your Luke, you were there for life and loss. I know the pain of loss, but I will never know the pain of losing Luke. I hurt and grieve for you and your family, our families. I wish I could take your pain away. Our thoughts and prayers are with you every day. Love you. Krista

Shawn said...

Greg and Nicol,
I am praying for our Jesus to continue to help you adjust to this new life you have been forced to live. We never wanted it this way. You have been such an example of grace in suffering. I pray that you will know how wide and deep and long and high is the love of Christ and the truth that this love surpasses our own knowledge or understanding, especially when we don't understand what He is doing.

I love you both and Sum-Sum so much, Shawn

Mocha with Linda said...

My heart has been broken for you ever since I heard about this from Angie's blog. You and Nicol have been on my heart so so much. Nicol has ministered to me so much through her music. I pray that God is returning that to you both, pressed down, shaken together and running over in comfort and healing.

Stacy said...

Greg & Nicol,
I am a reader at Angie's blog & I remember when she posted about Luke's passing. My heart broke for you then as it does now. I have prayed for the Lord to be with you all & will continue to do so. While your pain is so new & raw, in time only thorugh Him is there peace.
In Christ's love,
Stacy from Alaska

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing. I know that through the pain your desire is to bring glory to the Father. Your testimony and the life you live from here on out will help others who face tragedy and bring Him much glory. Just today I heard Beth Moore refer to hardships as our crowns that we can toss at His feet. He is our sustainer and worthy of all our praise. He is our companion and desires to hear from us...be it tears, shouts, questions, or sighs. He knows our thoughts before we can utter a word, but putting the feelings into words helps us to hear ourselves and come to terms with the fact that we hurt. We hurt in the presence of our King who grieves with us. Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so...

Lisa-Cinti,Ohio said...

Greg & Nicol,
I linked to your page from Angie's. I have prayed hard for your family through your loss. I am going to continue to follow your progress through your blog as long as you allow us out here in blog land to be a part of your journey. Hearing your story about Luke, Angie's story about Audrey has certainly helped me in my walk with Christ even though I have not had such a tragic loss as either of you. Your words, Angie's words have touched me and helped me understand so many other things. Thank you for sharing your truest emotions and your faith with me as it has helped me more than words can describe.

Lisa H.

Baseballs and Tutu's said...

I am a reader of Angie's blog and I just want you to know that I am praying for you and your family. I have four children..the youngest being two months old and I can not imagine what you are going through. We will continue to keep you in our prayers on a daily basis.

Megan said...

I couldn't help but put myself in that very situation as I read it. Even with only those few details it is still gut wretching. We welcomed little man number 2 last friday and I hover over him like a hawk. All night long I find myself waking to check and watch his chest for movement. I pray so often for his safety. I have a hard time coming to terms with the loss of Audrey and Luke. The Smith/Sponberg families are the most godly, God influenced, and God serving families I have ever met and if you can go through this then I know it could happen to anyone. I don't want to say that I am terrified but at times I can't help it. I'm a mother, We pray, we worry, we cry for every reason imaginable and we love. With this said little man is awake now and demanding my attention. I hope this makes the sense I wanted it to make and that it didn't upset anyone with anything I wrote. I pray for you and your familes and I am so thankful I had been involved with your families those few years ago. Love you guys
Megs

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story. The Lord is using your story in my life in ways you can't imagine.
Nikki

Rachel said...

I am in tears as I read your account what can only be described as the worst day of your family's life. I work at a pediatric ER here in Atlanta and these situations are absolutely the most heartbreaking. May God bless you with faith and peace. You will be in my prayers!

Marie said...

I cannot fathom the depth of your pain or your loss, so I am praying for your family.
-Blessings in Him!

Erica said...

Coming from Angie's blog. Praying for you, as I have been since I heard. What an astonishingly beautiful little boy God blessed you with. So sorry that he was taken so soon.

Kierstyn said...

I'm also a reader of Angie's blog. How heart breaking your story is, but how encouraging your faith! I'm praying for your family (and please know those words are very sincere!).

queenoftheclick said...

Just wanted to let you know that I have been praying for you and Nicol since I heard. I will continue praying that God gives you both strength and continues to strengthen your marriage in this difficult time.

rthling said...

Greg and Nicol,
I have been praying and grieving for your family since I read about Luke's death on Angie's blog.
I don't really have words adequate to say how sorry I am for you.
Hold on to Jesus. He will get you through this pain.

vaneblu said...

Greg and Nicol... I read your story first at Angie's blog and cried... I am reading now and crying again!
I will continue praying for your family

Sara said...

I am so very sorry for your loss. I know that when sweet Luke entered Heaven he was greeted by my Samuel. I am sure that the two of them are taking care of each other for now. That doesn't bring much comfort, I know. It doesn't really bring me comfort either. Just know that I am praying for you - and have been since I read about your tragedy on Angie's site.
God bless, and I am silently walking by your side as you travel on this road of grieving.

Sara said...

I am so honored to have met your sweet family while we were in Nashville. What a joy it was for me to be able to speak with you both, even though it was so brief, about your love and sorrow for Luke. I continue to pray for you...

Tisha said...

Thank you for sharing your story. I can not imagine how difficlut that must have been to write. Although we do not know you, we have loved the voice of Nicol and praised God with her song in our home for years. You have been often in our thoughts and in our prayers.

The Witts said...

We have been praying for your family. I can not even begin to fathom what your sweet family is going through. My God be your strength and rock forever and ever.

Continuing to pray!

Luanne said...

Beautiful tribute to Luke. Thank you for sharing such a emotional part of your life with those of us that want so much to help in whatever way we can. Nicole your music has been so instrumental in my walk with Christ.

Thank you and I will continue to pray for your beautiful family.

I know that by pouring out your soul, God will allow you to help so many others who are dealing with similar circumstances and broken hearts. Thank you.
Luanne from Michigan

Dawn Jenkins said...

I've been praying for your sweet family since May 28th and I will continue!

Mandy said...

Greg & Nicole,
I am so sorry for your loss. When I read about it on Angie's blog only hours after it happened I prayed that God would allow me to carry a part of your grief on the days it was overwhelming for you. There have been days I have "felt" the grief. It sounds so funny to say that. I'm a perfect stanger...although I am a faithful fan of Selah before you 2 were even married. I've attended almost every concert that was in our area! Anyway, I pray that God will continue to give you the strength to face each day. And know that there are many of us out here praying for you and asking God to allow us to walk with you...even from miles away.
In Christian Love, Mandy & Family

Simplyliz said...

Oh my goodness, I can't imagine the journey you are on right now. I am glad God is in the center of it. I want you to know I have been praying for you guys since Angie shared about the tragedy on her blog.

Patrice said...

Praying for you and your family since I first read about your loss on Angie's blog.

Merrie said...

Keeping you both in prayer. No parent should have to go through what you've been through.
Love in Christ to you and your family,
Merrie

Elizabeth said...

I just want you to know that your family is in our thoughts and prayers. We have followed Nicol's life for years as Selah fans (my aunt & uncle live down the street from their producer Jason Kyle's family, but that is another story for another day), and we feel like we know her and care for her as family. Our hearts have broken for yours as we read about your tragedy on Angie's blog. Please know you will be in our prayers continually, as we ask our Father to draw you continually closer to his side, and hold you ever tighter in his arms. Love, Elizabeth

Courtney Nichols said...

May God give you strength as you deal with the tragic loss of Luke. I, too, have been praying for you over the last 9 weeks, as I follow Angie's blog and read the news of Luke's passing there. Thank you for sharing your story and I look forward to supporting Luke's foundation. God Bless...Courtney

Stacy said...

My heart aches and aches for you. I am so sorry for the pain you are feeling. Praying for you all.

twondra said...

I'm a reader of Angie's blog. Your family is definitely in my thoughts and prayers.

Kim Kiehn said...

Hi Greg,
This is Kim (Day) Kiehn, in Caribou. Just wanted you to know we are praying for you here.

Joy said...

I knew what the end of the blog would say before you you said it. But that didn't make it any easier to hear or think about. Being able to see into your hearts and glimpse your loss is such an honor. Your little boy is being cradled in the loving arms of God, with Audrey.

Joy

Marci @Finding Joy in the Journey said...

I've been praying for your family since Angie first spoke of your beautiful little boy. My prayers continue to be with you as you follow this journey God has laid in front of you. Thank you for sharing your story and the sweet life of little Luke with us!

Rebekah Walker said...

I can not tell you how sorry I am for your loss. I found out about you through Angie's blog. Even though we have never met and probably on this earth will never meet but I do think about your family on an almost daily basis. That is the truth. My heart just pours out for you. Thinking, and praying...that is all I can do.

I hope this blog you have started can be a way for you to share you thoughts and a healing/supportive place. One day at a time.

Chatty said...

Hi Greg and Nicol (and Summer),

I regularly read Angie's blog and was heartbroken to hear about Luke. You've been on my mind ever since Angie posted about your loss. You are in my prayers, as is Luke, and I just wanted to pop in and say a little hello to let you all know I'm thinking of you....

Stephanie Balvin said...

Wow, I can't imagine. Thanks for sharing something so personal. I pray for your family and the journey you are on from up here in MN.

Billie said...

I have been following your story thru Angie and I have been praying for you and your family. I have a Luke of my very own so it touched me at such a deep level. No words can comfort, so I won't even try. But I love you and your family as my very own...via the WWinterweb! I will continue to pray for you all and will be a part of your blessing as you "heal" by this blog. Loving y'all...

Jen said...

I'm also a reader of Angie's blog and have been praying for your family from the moment I heard about your sweet Luke. We have experienced the loss of two of our children and it devastates me every time I hear of another family having to go through the pain as well. May His peace be with you and understanding as you move through this painful journey. God Bless.

A Stone Gatherer said...

I think of you all often! Your family is in my prayers! I know your whole family has suffered much these past few months! I'm so thankful for your testimony! Continue to lean on Jesus!

Lisa said...

I am so sorry for your loss. We have had 3 miscarriages and some days it seems like the pain will never go away. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family each and every day.

Andrea said...

It is very hard what you are going through...I know because I lost my son 11.5 years ago to SIDS. He was born 3 weeks early at 9 pounds 2 ounces (yes I understand big babies too..ha ha). I found he had passed one morning in November at 7 weeks old. I wondered how it was possible considering he was asleep in the bassinet right next to the bed. How could it be that he was gone. I will say that it does get easier. My aunt who had lost a child as well, told me that it would get better and I could not believe that it would, but now I feel a thousand times better. I worry so much now for the ones that I have here on earth and although I ache at times for my son that I lost, I know he is definitely in a better place. My prayer for you is that, that place will come for you as well in a timely fashion. It does hurt, but it does get better. I am about to have my second son since losing my one 11 years ago and God is good all the time. Take care and you are in my prayers.

KimMc said...

I have been praying for you and your family for months. I am a faithful reader of Angie's blog (and although we have never met, I feel like I know all of you!) and was devastated when I heard the news! I will now continue to follow you on your journey of healing and I pray that God will allow your hearts to heal while allowing Luke's memory to live on forever!

Sarah said...

How do you love so deeply after losing so much? That is not human. That is divine.

Christ surely lives in and through you! Luke's life (here on Earth and in Heaven) has a purpose beyond our understanding....may you always know his love and that of his Father in Heaven.

God bless you all!
Hugs,
Sarah

Angie said...

I have been praying for your family since I heard about your terrible loss on Angie's blog. I just wanted to let you know that you are in my daily thoughts and prayers.
Angie Plude

Jaci said...

I found your blog off Angie's. I know nothing I say could make it better, but I am truly sorry for your loss on sweet Luke. I am praying for your family.

Bethany said...

My heart is still so sad for your family after the double dose of sorrow. I'm praying that God's grace will continue to sustain you. I'm here via Angie's blog too.

Anonymous said...

Praying that you all find your way through this grief in your own time. You are a beautiful family of great faith, which will carry you.

I just wanted to say that the picture of Nicol and Luke in the sidebar (when he was born) is one of the most beautiful I've ever seen- a gorgeus baby and the happiest mom (and gorgeous too of course:)!
Heather

auntmommie said...

Greg and Nicol,
You and I will likely never meet this side of heaven, my husband and I work for FCA in San Antonio, Texas, and we know just a drop of th grief you are carrying. I prayed, some weeks ago, after Luke went to be with Jesus, that the Lord would let me help to carry your grief. There have been moments that I absolutely knew that He had answered my prayer, though I'm sure that your pain has still felt unbearable. I've also had your parents heavy on my heart, and I'm so sorry that they combine the pain of their own loss with the pain of watching their own children hurting so. Your Luke is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing him with us.
With joy and love,
Sandi Faulk
auntmommie@aol.com

created2teach said...

Sometimes all we can do is be still. Even as we weep, to just be still and know that He is God can be comforting. Of course, I have no idea what you are going through, so I feel unworthy to say anything. But I know He is able to be you strength for today and hope for tomorrow.
Blessings

anglswngs said...

What a beautiful angel Luke is. I don't have words to express myself to you in a way that might matter...but I would like to try. I want you to know that since the day I read about your family in Angie's blog, I have thought about Luke everytime I put my baby down to sleep. It plays through my mind what it must have been like for you and my heart grows so heavy for you both. When I saw his beautiful picture it reminded me so much of my Andrew who was born April 14th. The eyes...the hair...the smile. As I read Angie's words I held that baby a little tighter than I had before. I listen to his breath now as he sleeps and check on him more than I ever thought about doing with my first 2 children. I pray that your story will gracefully tap on the shoulders of those that may take some things for granted in this world and remind us that there are no guarantees. Remind us that God is in charge and that every moment is such a beautiful gift.
Deborah
Annapolis, MD
anglswngs@aol.com

mhutsell said...

Oh...he is a beautiful boy...so beautiful. How you must miss him and how you must want to erase those memories that God now wants you to recount and heal as you grieve them outloud. Know that we who read do so with humility and we appreciate the open door into your darkest hours and your brightest hopes. May God bless you both as you begin this process of blogging and honoring your precious little son. Because of Grace, Melissa Hutsell

Kristy said...

Greg and Nicol,
My thoughts and prayers are with your family. I am a religious reader of Angie's blog and can not believe the trials both of your families have had to endure the past year. It is such an eye opener of God's Grace and love for us all to be able to keep you all so strong through it all. It is amazing to see how positive your family is through it all! I will continue to pray for you and send my hugs to your entire family! Keep your head up and keep moving forward one day at a time!

The Butcher Family said...

Greg & Nicol~

Your precious family has been and will continue to be in our daily prayers. We lost our daughter on March 27th. She was 8 weeks and 3 days old...born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome but doing well and home. She, too, passed suddenly in our care. Oh, I have found such peace in a CD collection that family mailed to us...Selah...The Timeless Collection. Nicol, your God given talent radiates hope and praise in such extremely painful times for me. My favorite verses are from "Before the Throne of God Above"...One with Himself I cannot die, my soul is purchased by His blood, my life is hid with Christ on High...Know that during every second of longing for Luke, he is sitting on our Father's lap and because of our faith in Him, you will see and hold and love your son for all eternity...praying for peace and comfort.
Blessings & love~ Rebecca
www.babygirlbutcher.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Your family has been in our prayers and on our heart for weeks- We will continue to lift you, Nicol and Summer up in prayer!!
God bless you-The Martinez family

The Dixie Six said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I have wept for you and Angie while I have been reading her blog. I hope that you can find comfort in knowing that he is with a loving Heavenly Father again. May the Lord bless you and your family at this difficult time.
Robyne

the*4*of*us said...

every parent's nightmare...you guys are still in my prayers.

Holly Green said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Two couples in our Sunday School class lost their babies to SIDS within 2 months of each other. One of the couples being some of our closest friends. I haven't experienced this personally, but I have watched just how powerful prayer has been for them. Our friends say that everyday gets easier as long as they lean on the Lord. Just know there are so many people praying for you.

Anonymous said...

Having lost a child myself, I can only say that I am thankful for your courage and openness in being willing to tell your story. It helps me so much to read others' experiences and know that my grieving is normal, when I feel so NOT normal, my life that I liked to think was under control, instantly took a tragic turn that FORCED me to recognize that I was never in control in the first place, only God was.
Love and prayers,
From Augusta, GA

ginger said...

you both are in my prayers,, may Jesus continue to carry you through these next few months, let him hold you and allow you to hear his heartbeat! may His peace that surpasses all understanding be found in you tonight. (i'm just another reader of angie's blog...)

Bekah said...

I came here from Angie's blog and wanted to tell you that even though I've never met any of you, I've been praying for you over these last few weeks. I love to listen to Selah's music and each time I hear a song, I am reminded again to pray for you. I don't have adequate words to say what I wish I could, but I am lifting you up.

So Blessed said...

Prayers are lifted for your precious family...

Angie said...

I am so, so sorry for the loss of your sweet baby Luke. So very sorry. Tears stream as I pray that God will continue to hold you all close to Him. I also am a reader of Angie's blog.
with love, angie

The Rhoderick Family said...

I have been praying for your family since I heard the news from your sister's blog "Bring the Rain". I am so sorry you have had to endure this horrible pain. Please know that we are thinking about you and praying for you daily!

Jenn @ Casa de Castro said...

Having experienced a very, very similar scenario and loss with my sister's son 23 years ago, my heart goes out to you and your family. We know that our God is good... all the time. But in times like these it is hard to reconcile. Keep believing and claiming His promises. They are true, and He is faithful and so much more than wonderful.

It has been my honor to pray for you through these tough days, and I will continue to lift you before the throne of grace.

Press on.

Laura said...

I've been praying for your family since reading of your tragic loss on Angie's blog. I've been through my own storm in the area of my marriage, spanning the past year. Shortly after my husband left last summer, my sister sent me my first Selah CD, Hiding Place. I cannot begin to tell you what a blessing the words and music have been to me. My prayer for you these past weeks has been that you too will again be encouraged by the truths you have so boldly proclaimed in song, that you would be comforted by the reminders of God's faithfulness and love, surrounded by His peace and presence in a way you cannot begin to comprehend. He is faithful, even in those moments when we are faithles and full of doubt.

Becca Sports said...

Greg and Nicol,

Wayne and I continue to lift you up in prayer. We cannot imagine all of the emotions that you are experiencing during this difficult time, but just know that we are praying for you. If there is anything we can do to help you, please, please let us know.

Love,
The Harder Family

Beckycain6 said...

Hi Greg and Nicol,

I sure wish there was a way for you to believe that a complete stranger could feel total, utter, gut wrenching, remorseful pain for your losing Luke. I'm so very, very sad for you both and cannot fathom the haunting memories that must mingle in with the sweet ones you'd rather hold. I play it in my mind, and it is always too terrible to imagine.

I have prayed in my heart that despite the tears and the hurt, that somehow the Lord could show you His infinite, tender mercy. I've prayed that you would not fall victim to the deceitful images of doubt and despair. I've prayed that you would be able to hear people say, "Praise God despite the tragedy," without throwing up or passing out. I've prayed---and I have done it over and over and over. I hope somehow, someway, sometime that the Lord could bring the peace of people's prayers into your hearts. Even if they are the prayers of people you will clearly never see, or meet....people who just love you as members of the body of Christ...and would do anything to help carry the burden of your hurt.

Know that you are loved. Know that people care. Know that I am praying for you.

Hang in there. The Lord be with you.......always,
Becky

Becky Cain

Caleb's Family said...

I am a reader of Angie's blog and just wanted to tell you how sincerely sorry I am for your loss. I have a 21 month and it is extremely difficult for me to imagine your pain at losing your son. From the first picture I saw of him I was blown away because he is so utterly, completely beautiful and perfect. Such a handsome head of hair and such big beautiful eyes! I know you must be so proud to be his papa! He really is one of the most perfect babies I've ever seen. I am so glad you have set up a foundation in his memory. May God continue to provide you with peace and comfort. I hope your little girl is doing well- I'm sure she must have numerous questions. Thankfully we serve a big God who loves us and comforts us.

The Gradys said...

I am praying for you all!

laura said...

Greg and Nicol-
I want to echo Emily's sentiments. I have been praying for you and your family ever since I was led to Angie's blog and learned of your sad news. I will continue to pray for you all. Your son Luke was beautiful. My heart aches for you, and your faith inspires me. I pray God's Healing Mercies over you.
Laura

Hope said...

Dear Greg and Nicole,
I lost twins this spring. One at 16 weeks 2/29 and at 23 weeks I birthed Hannah by C-section on 4/21. She live 8 hours. It was my first pregnancy and we were(and still are) devastated. I have no answers just unfailing faith that His plans are perfect and unknown to us.I have been praying for you and Angie&Todd for several months now. Love and prayers for His Shalom,Hope Hayes

Anonymous said...

Greg and Nicol,
I just wanted you guys to know I think of you often and lift you up in my prayers. I am a blogger friend and reader of Angie's blog and keep you guys in our prayers all the time.
I am so sorry for you guys and pray that in the day to come that God gives you strength. The poem says so much as I can imagine how your heart feels and the feelings you have. We know our God does not make mistakes but the feelings can not be helped that you must have.
You guys are a true inspiration to all of us and I will continue to pray for you guys and your ministry. I pray peace that surpasses all understanding.
Thank you for sharing your life with us.
Missy - Picayune, Ms.

Carrie said...

My heart aches for all three of you. I, like you, have a baby in heaven. It is wrenching pain that I could never wish on anyone. But after seven years, I am able to say that she lives in heaven, and that she will never experience the earthly pains that we have to endure. I pray that God will use Luke's story to reach others who do not have faith and are trying to endure the pain of losing a child without God. Stay strong in your faith and with each other. You are being prayed for!

The Wild World of Richmond said...

Greg and Nicol,
I am a member of EMC in Dalton and heard you guys right before Nicol gave birth to Luke. You were an inspiration then and won my heart. My husband works with Renee at DGE and we have been praying earnestly for your whole family since this tragedy began. Know that we will continue to lift you up as often as you come to mind. I pray that God heals your hearts. I'm also praying for little Summer. I know that she misses her baby brother.
praying for you,
Terri R.

maggieallen123 said...

Greg and Nicol,

I am thankful that you have allowed us into your heart. You and your family are constantly on alot of people's minds and prayers. Being able to hear from you on this blog keeps you ever before us to continue to pray and ask God to give you courage and strength. May God cover you with His Love and His strength as only He can do.
Love, Becky

Tonia said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I, too, lost my son May 6. He was 2 years old. No parent should ever have to go through the pain we have experienced and will continue to experience for the rest of our lives. I'm praying for you and your family.

mom22girls said...

Still praying for your sweet family. Know that God was with you and Nicol in those horrifying moments that night. The Tillis Family

Kim D. said...

I am so sorry for your loss.

Tasha said...

Well,I am at a complete loss for words.I just really don't know what to say.What can you say?To leave a comment here seems so insignificant.I first heard about your story a couple days after Luke went to be with Jesus.You see,I gave birth to my daughter Avery Grace on May 27,2008.That day is significant to us both for very different reasons.I remember how often I thought about baby Luke and your family as I held my brand new daughter.I would cry so much because I just could not fathom how I would cope with that kind of loss knowing how much I loved her and what she meant to me.I have to tell you that I prayed for you so much in those early days.It seemed like I prayed for you every time I held Avery.But then,I just kind of stopped.It's like I forgot.The thought of that makes me numb.And I feel like I need to tell you that I am really sorry.I don't ever want to forget.Avery will be 10 weeks this coming Tuesday.It scares me in a way.But it reminds me to pray.I want to make this promise to you.I want you to know that a 30 year old mom in Indiana that you will probably never meet will lift you up in prayer on a daily basis.I hope it isn't weird for me to say this but I love you guys.~Tasha~my email is sthalterman@verizon.net if you want to respond.

Liz & Will Timmerman said...

I have been following your story on Angie's blog. My heart feels linked to your family. My husband and I lost our baby son Luke on February 19 this year - he was stillborn. He was supposed to be born on March 17 for a scheduled c-section. I feel like these dates are more than coincidental with your son. And they also share the same name. Your family has been in our thoughts and prayers as we go through the grieving process. Please know you are thought of often, and I know our sons are playing together in heaven.

Love,
Liz & Will Timmerman

Jennifer said...

I too am a reader of Angie's blog and a listener of your wonderful wifes voice/music. Since I heard the news of Luke you guys are in our thought and prayers daily....I pray God wraps you both in His awesome Grace and gives you Peace at such a difficult time of understanding what your have been forced to deal with. I can't imagin!

Praying for in Cowan, TN..and we even put you on our church pray list:)

Woodcock Family

Craig & Amanda Dyson said...

Greg,

My heart and prayers have gone out to you and Nicol. My wife and I are going through the reality of one moment changing your life forever, as we lost our firstborn Ava at birth in January. As I ready your post, I thought back to that day in our life when I knew it would never be the same. God's grace is indeed good, but the pain is always there. We will continue to pray for you and the family.

Craig Dyson

team hill said...

I want you to know that you have nights full of prayers from Texas.

Michelle re said...

My husband and I have been praying for yall, I heard about your son on Angies blog. My heart hurts for you guys, know that so many people are praying that the Lord will comfort you and wrap his loving arms around you.

sue said...

I have been praying for you and I will continue to pray for you.

Sue said...

I have been praying for you all and I will continue to pray everyday.

bethany said...

Greg and Nicol....
As I read your post, I heard the song "With Hope" by Steven Curtis Chapman. I looked at the pictures of little Luke and the tears just streamed down my face (they are going again). I don't understand why for Luke, why for for Audrey, why for Maria Champman, why for little 5 year old Katie here in Merced. But Jesus does and that is the only comfort. He loves you, He loves Steven and MaryBeth, HE loves Angie and Todd, and He loves MaryAnne and Carlos. I pray His love continues to get your through each day.
I am praying for you!
Bethany
PS...I'm a reader of Angie's blog

shannon said...

thank you for sharing your pain, your story, your 'instants' with us all....i cry for your family and the ache you must have in your hearts...we are sending prayers for you

Trudy said...

I'm truly sorry! May God be with you.

jajbs said...

I am a reader of Angie's blog and have been praying for your family over the past few months. I am so sorry. Your wife's music has ministered to me so much during our infertility and adoption. I pray that God will send you comfort and will minister to your heart in the days to come.


amanda

The Kempiak Party of Five said...

I am so very sorry for your horrible pain. I too lost a loved one and going on in life is hard to do, especially when nobody notices your aching heart. I pray that God can heal you of those images and draw you closer to Him. May you long for heaven more than you ever have before, because you have someone very special and little waiting for you.

Marie said...

My first child, Ronny, died in 1975. He was 4 months and 5 days old. The hurt, after 33 years, is deep inside. But still, every now and again, the oddest things can bring it to the surface.
Praise God, moment by moment, He's carried that hurt with me whenever it's been more than I can bear.
Praying you sense His strength in a mighty way each and every day.

"Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed," says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
Isaiah 54:10

Michelle said...

I know your story from Ang's blog. Rarely a day goes by that I don't think of you all and send up a prayer.

Raelyn said...

I too will continue to pray for your healing. I could not imagine that kind of loss.

boutcrazy said...

I'm so sorry that your family had to go through this loss. I've been one of the many praying for you during this time. The poem you shared on your first post was so eye opening and heart convicting for me. Thank you for sharing your pain with us.
Deborah

mlpinky said...

My heart breaks for you. I pray that Jesus is more real today than yesturday. I know that HE is the only healer of hearts.
Mlpinky
homeschool mommy to 3 in Canada

Songarden4 said...

If im feeling this much pain, i can't even begin to know yours. I could pass off all the usual sayings we tend to want to share in these times, but it just seems that there is something more to be said, something more to be learned, something more to be shared . . . and that, of course, is where we turn this all over to the Lord and we do the only thing we can do - trust Him and talk to Him. Above all, i pray that He will keep the two of you strong in your marriage, strong together to get through this, and strong for Him. Keep on singing His praises,
Lin

Pink said...

Greg & Nicol, What can I say? My heart aches for your family...I have been praying for you since we all got the word via Angie's blog. The death of a loved one is NEVER easy, but the death of your child, any child, has got to be the hardest thing any person could have to deal with. I continue to pray for you and your family. I pray God gives you the peace that you need to deal with the day to day life that is ahead of you, and that He gives you the courage to share your story to help others.

Paul & Angela Jenkins said...

I'm a reader from Angie blog and have prayed for you from the first moment she asked us to. You guys have been in my heart and prayers.

Maria Hanson said...

Just know that a family in Ohio is praying hard for you. We hope you feel wrapped in a huge prayer blanket of comfort and love.

Jenn said...

I am a reader of Angie's blog and have been thinking of your family and praying for you for weeks. Thank you for sharing your very personal story and being a wonderful example of faith. I will continue to pray for you.

Anonymous said...

I found you blog through Angie. I know how horrible it is to lose a chile, and no one should ever have to feel that pain. Me and my husband know way to well these crazy emotion. You are so right life can change in an instant. I am sorry for your loss.
Jeannine
jlb1094@yahoo.com
http://remembered-forever.org/JustinJohnUrsillo/p/index/

lori said...

I am so sorry for your loss. And I thank you for your faithfullness to God in times like this. You are part of an army for people to look to when the feel like they lost faith

Michelle said...

Please know that there are many, many strangers out here who have heard your story through your sister-in-law's blog, and who have kept you in our hearts and prayers for the past few months. There is nothing I (or anyone else) can say to bring you peace, but I hope that when things seem dark you find some comfort in the fact that your family is in our collective embrace. Thank you for choosing to share Luke's story. Such a beautiful boy!

Chris said...

Greg and Nicol,
My sister and I have been praying for you all since the moment Angie posted your need. I have had my own life changing moment almost 9 years ago. I just want to say that the God who sustains you now, will be with you both even when the journey of months stretches to years.

Diana said...

I have read of Aubrey's life with guardedness and when I saw the link to your site, I put my guard back up because I simply don't want to imagine our grief and sorrow - but I read with tears and prayers.

Please know that I am praying for you and may the peace of Christ embrace you!

Diana, San Antonio, TX

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry for your loss, It has been 4 years since I lost my son and I still think of him everyday. The Lord carried me through this, and he will carry you too. Praying for your family.Love,Jaime

Anonymous said...

Greg and Nicol,
We have thought about you both over the past couple months. There are so many praying for you as God leads you through this new, uncertain path. We are so sorry and will continue to keep you in our prayers.

Amos and Mariah

Joy in Denver said...

My heart breaks for you. I am so very, very sorry.

Jesus holds your beautiful little boy in His arms. They wait for you.

Kasey (Ethan's Mommy) said...

May the Lord, the God of your fathers, increase you a thousand times and bless you as he has promised. - Deuteronomy 1:11

Jess said...

Greg, Nicol, and Summer,
I have been and will continue to uplift you in prayer. I remember your mom (nicol) and I IMing each other after Audrey entered heaven, and we were encouraging each other, as we remembered.....her Audrey, and I the loss of 3 grandparents in 9 months, all while away at Moody. And then I heard of your news, and my heart just dropped. I couldn't believe it. I'm thankful Greg, that you have put this blog together. I know it will reach people who have gone through what you have in amazing ways. And it is a great way to remember sweet Luke, and all the blessings and joy he brought to you all during his lifetime. I think about you all often, and pray that His peace and love will be your strength and encouragement during these times.

Blessings,
Jessica Case

Jessica said...

Praying. That is all I can say. it will be two months ago on wednesday that we lost our son. There are no words beside, I'm praying.

Marc and Charity said...

Hello y'all, I came here via Angie's blog. We have been praying for you and just wanted to let you know. Thanks for sharing these precious photos of your family. We pray you feel God's presence very near.

Blessings from the UK-
Charity

georgia tarheel said...

Praying for you guys! So sorry that you know this loss. We will continue to lift you up.

Paige

abnacy said...

Still praying for your family. May God comfort you the way only He can to get you through this.

love,
jennie

Vicki said...

I ache for you. My prayers are with you.

Linda said...

Greg & Nicol,
I am so sorry that you are going through this pain. I have been reading Angie's blog and was horrified when I read about Luke. My son was born at 25 weeks, 5 days gestation on March 19, 2008 delivered early because he had developed fetal hydrops from a virus. He lived 65 days in the NICU and passed away on May 23, 2008 from an infection (NEC). It was shocking to us because he had been doing so well and we were hoping to take him home in early June. I am glad to see you write. Writing has also helped me through this difficult season. Our son's visitation was on the 27th and burial on the 28th of May and I can't help but feel a kinship to you as we felt pain together hundreds of miles apart (not to mention their birth days were so close). I hope you are finding some peace. My pain is deep but I cannot begin to imagine what you two have gone through having Luke pass from SIDS. Please know that your family is on my mind and in my prayers.
I am curious to hear about your foundation as we too are considering creating a foundation.
Linda in Bella Vista, AR
www.caringbridge.org/visit/miraclebaby3

Marla Taviano said...

Praying God wraps your beautiful family in His arms and squeezes you so very tight!!

Anonymous said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
I am a reader of Angie's blog and I just wnated to let you know that I am thinking of you.
Love
Em
Australia

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you and praying for your family. May God help you each day and give you comfort.
Love, Kim

Heather said...

My Heart goes out to your family & Prayers are sent up to Jesus!! By what I have read you are close to Jesus. He will be the best comfort for the future.
God Bless you all.

Christy said...

I am so sorry to have heard of your story (along with Angie's). I pray for your family as well as Angie's family. I have no clue what that feels like... but I do have three children and I don't know what I would do if I lost one of them. I will be praying that the Lord blesses you through this trial... just remember that the Lord draws us nearer to Him through the pain... and we can find peace and comfort in that. I don't know if you will try for another one, but I do know that I will be praying for that if that is the Lord's will. May you be blessed for sharing your stroy. Thank you for being transparent.
God Bless,
christy and family

Kristen said...

I have been praying for you often as you grieve...praying for Summer as well as her and your "world" has been affected forever.

CIRCLE OF LIFE said...

WOW , I AM SO SORRY FOR YOU LOSS, WORDS CAN NOT EXPRESS HOW LIFE CAN CHANGE IN A MOMENT. THE TEARS WERE ROLLING DOWN MY FACE TO HEAR WHAT I WAS READING ABOUT LUCK.. YOU ARE IN MY HEART AND MY FAMILY PRAYED FOR YOU IN OUR CHURCH TODAY.. MAY GOD BLESS YOUR FAMILY AT THIS TIME, I have been following the blog of audrey and angie and was so upset to haer about luck...I can't imagine how t you are but be strong and keep the faith.. god bless love michelle....

Stuarts said...

I wish I had adequate words to express how deeply I grieve for you and your family. How I have prayed for you these past months, beseeching the Lord to breathe strength into you all. I have begged Him to allow me to take your griefs even for the briefest of moments. My heart continues to ache for you. Your son is beautiful. And he waits for you in the arms of Him who made him. I know there is comfort in that. Thank you for sharing your story, for allowing others to grieve with you and rejoice in the Lord as He holds you up. God Bless your precious, precious family.
Kelli

Anonymous said...

I will continue to pray for you and your family...deeply...the Holy Spirit expressing all your needs...encompassing comfort… I am so sorry this has happened to you. Tabatha

Anonymous said...

Greg and Nicol,
I have been following Angie's blog and was shocked when I found out about you losing Luke. I want you both to know that I have been praying for your family. Our God is a big God. I pray that he will comfort you in such a big way that we understand the peace you two have. You are in my heart and my prayers. -Becca

Carole said...

My heart breaks for you all. I pray that God will give you a moment's rest from your grieving. I pray that every person who reads your story will take a piece of your pain so that it might be lessened just enough. I cannot fathom what you feel, but I want you to know I will pray.

caroledenise@yahoo.com

txmomx6 said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful words and your beautiful son.
I know, from personal experience, that this won't change the depth of your grief this soon..... maybe later ----- but lovely Luke is being adored and well-cared for until you arrive. I pray that my husband (w/ 3 sons of his own) gets the chance to cuddle and play with him.
My love and prayers are with you,
Janine

RSR2003 said...

He's absolutely beautiful. Hugs to you and prayers for you and you grieve the loss of your gorgeous little Luke.

Love In Christ,
Rosie

notevenatshirt vb said...

I've been praying for your family since I first read about it on Bring The Rain. I'm so sorry for your loss and yet appreciate your willingness to put this out there because our God is faithful to use all things for the good of those who love him. He WILL use this to help someone else.

Annalien said...

Words cannot expressed how sorry I am for your loss. Such a gorgeous boy! May God continue to hold you up, even though we cannot understand. Praying for you.

Jen said...

I still weep for your loss. We have an anual national fundraising day here in Australia called Red Nose Day, that raises money for research into (and support for those who have suffered because of) SIDS. I purchased a little red nosed monster thingy and named it Luke (the day was only a week or two after he followed Jesus' beckoning). Next year, I'll buy a nose and write "LUKE" on it and wear it all day in his honour.

I still pray for you all the time. My heart aches for you. I asked the Lord to be able to carry some of your grief, and still, my heart twists so painfully when I pray for you. You are very much upheld in prayer all over the world. I trust it has blessed you in this time.

Tara said...

I'm so very, very sorry. I'm praying for your family.

sheila said...

Dear Sponberg Family, I have been praying for each of you since your sister-in-law (Angie) asked for prayers. God impresses it upon me to lift you both up continually. Your son is absolutely beautiful. My heart hurts for you and I continue to pray peace, strength, and wisdom for each of you. God surround you with his love. sheila

Tori said...

My prayers are continually with you and your family. I pray that the Lord comforts your hearts during this time and gives you the strength you need each day.

"There is no sorrow too deep, He cannot soothe it . . .He Will Carry You!"

In His Grip,
Tori
PA

Andrea said...

My heart aches for you! I am also too familiar with this grief. My little boy Wyatt passed away in March suddenly. I have been following Angie's blog and when she told about your family my heart broke for you because I know too well about how hard grief is. I hope that you will find some comfort. I will continue to pray for you family. I believe that there is a loving Heavenly Father that will help us in times like these. He will send people into our lives to help us. He will comfort us. Thanks for sharing your feelings during this hard time. It helps to know I'm not the only one that has lost one of my everythings. Your family is beautiful! I know you will have your Luke again someday and you will hold him again as a baby and will get the most wonderful gift of raising him.
Love,
Andrea Larsen
Wyatt's mom
andrealarsen.blogspot.com

Heather said...

As I read Angie's blog that horrible day, I cannot begin to tell you how my heart broke for your family. I have prayed for you and will continue to do so.

Love and Blessings!

Anonymous said...

Greg,

I am so sorry for what you are going through. I can't imagine that day, or the days following. The shear panic that a Mom has when their child is sick or is diagnosed with something is so hard at times, that I can't imagine what you both feel like.
I pray everday for all of you. You and Nicol are strong and have each other, that is a wonderful blessing. Keep each other close even when you don't feel like it because only the one who has experienced this will know what you need and feel.
Love you,
Wendy, David, AlexDKRW

The Harper Family said...

I have sent many many prayers up for your family. I read Angie's blog since the beginning and was heartbroken to read about baby Luke. I will continue to lift your family up to the throne of God.

amynelsonmom said...

Greg and Nicol,
I read about your precious Luke from Angie's site. I want to tell you that I am so very sorry for your loss and that we are lifting you up in prayer. My sister and I follow your story through Angie's blog and now we'll follow it through yours. I have no words to help you, only prayer. I wish we could understand his plan...until we can, we can only trust his heart. We are truly sorry that your life changed in an instant and will pray for your broken hearts to heal.

In HIS name,
Amy

Lisa said...

Your family has been on my heart since Angie first shared the news. I join many others in letting you know that I've been praying for you.

Words don't seem to do it, but I just want to encourage you to "hold to God's unchanging hand"

Amelia Elaine said...

I am so glad that you are sharing your story with others. God will surely use you both and Luke's story for His glory. Still praying for you all.
Audra

candesintx said...

Just wanted to send my love. You have a very beautiful family.

I've been praying for you ever since Angie broke the news.

AllyZabba said...

I am so sorry for your loss. My heart grieves for your family. You are in my prayers.

Jes said...

Dearest Nicol, Greg, and Summer...

We are praying for you all. Our hearts break with you.

That's the amazing thing about the body of Christ, isn't it...the way that Jesus laces our hearts together?

We are so very sorry for your pain, and look with anticipation toward the day that we will meet your precious Luke in Heaven, along with his cousin Audrey.

What a day of rejoicing that will be! When we all see Jesus we will sing and shout the victory!

In Jesus,
The Womacks
Arizona

Candie said...

I'm glad you decided to start a blog, so that we can know how you are doing. We have been praying for you since we heard the news from Angie's blog. What a hard path to walk down and we walk this road with you. We are dealing with the loss of a baby in our family as well, and it is very hard. I'm not sure if Nicol is still going to do the cruise in October, but I hope she does because what a testimony she will have. The Lord isn't done with you yet and I know that He will reward you for your faithfulness to Him. God bless you.

sue said...

I have been praying for all of you everyday. I will continue to pray.

Tina Vega said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story; I'm praying for you and your family.

kristin said...

I have been praying for you since I heard this news. You both have a special place in my heart, for I was at Moody when you met and I literally ran into your wife in the plaza during Founder's Week...I was so embarassed, said I was sorry, and then told all my friends that "I ran into the Selah girl!" :) I will keep praying for you that the Lord will be especially close in your lives. Keep resting in Him.

Jennifer said...

Greg & Nichol,

I continue to pray for both of you and Summer. I pray that God's unfailing love will strengthen you and His grace will sustain you. My newborn son went to heaven nearly 4 1/2 years ago. God has been so faithful to us. Keep clinging to the One who knows all about the suffering you are enduring. God loves you and He has a purpose for Luke being on earth and for his homegoing. Know that many are praying for you. As Scripture says, we find comfort in the fellowship of the suffering.
Love, Jennifer

Leah said...

Ever since reading your story on Angie's blog I have prayed for you and thought of your family often. I pray you find peace and strength in our Heavenly Father.

Mrs. Walker said...

My heart is so broken for you and Nicole. I read about your loss over at Angie's blog. I have been praying for you.

My husband and I lost a daughter five years ago. She was full term, but still born. As much as that hurt, I can't imagine getting to know her and then having to give her up. I'm so sorry!!

I know well that words are little comfort, but I do hope that the Lord uses some of the prayers and notes you have received to bring some light in the midst of this dark time.

May the God of all comfort keep and sustain you, Nicole and Summer. I will continue to pray.

Cheryl said...

Tears...that's all I can say...tears...

Bonnie said...

BEAUTIFUL!!! Your children are gorgeous. I'm not going to say sorry for your loss because I know you've heard it probably a millon times by now. I am going to say something that I wish I couldn't say...I know your pain all too well. I lost my baby girl...Faith Evalyn Rose. She died suddenly from a congenital heart defect that went undetected. She was 48 days old. Anyway, ending my novel here just to say, I'm thinking of you and your family!!!!

Laura said...

I just wanted you to know you've been in my prayers and will continue to be.

Jennifer said...

Greg and Nicol,
My heart aches for you both. You both have been on my mind so much since I heard the terrible news. Hold tight to each other...

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer and Robert Flynn

Adrienne said...

I am so sorry for your loss. My son, Avery Jace, was stillborn September 5, 2006. I was 8 1/2 months pregnant (34 weeks 2 days to be exact). He was our first child. My heart goes out to you and your family.

"The mention of my child's name may bring tears to my eyes, but it never fails to bring music to my ears. If you are really my friend, let me hear the beautiful music of his name. It soothes my broken heart and sings to my soul."


Much love,
Adrienne - mommy to our little angel in Heaven, Avery Jace

Anonymous said...

My heart aches and grieves for you both...Your family is in my prayers.I can't even begin to imagine what your pain is like... My sister died of SIDS when I was a little girl....it was one of the worst days of my life.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful, beautiful little boy! All that hair, and that smile is amazing. I am so sorry that you lost him, but what a blessing it must be to know him. Thank you for sharing your story and pictures with us. I hope that you will continue to have more precious ones, and some day soon you will all be with Luke again. Life is very short, but eternity is forever. I can't wait for our Jesus to take us home!

Lindsey's mom said...

I just found your blog and wanted to express my sorrow for the loss of your precious son. My daughter's Heaven date is January 6, 2006. She was 8 and I know in my heart of hearts she is taking care of your baby boy! God Bless you.....
Thanks for sharing your son..and his legacy.