What are you looking for?

Press [Enter] to search

Learning Through Suffering: Timothée & Laëtitia’s Story

“We’ve done everything we can for your husband,” the doctor said gently, his voice crackling through the receiver. 

Exhausted from battling sickness herself, staying brave for their three kids, begging God for Timothée’s life, and dreading the call she received from the hospital staff once a day, Laëtitia closed her eyes, imagining her husband lying pale and unconscious on his hospital bed, his body shuddering unnaturally with the breaths the ventilator forced into his damaged lungs at mechanical intervals. Even as her eyes filled with tears, she knew that whatever happened, God would show up for her family just as He had throughout their marriage. She prayed again.

Depending on God in times of need began early in their life together, and even earlier for Timothée. As a teenager, he was diagnosed with kidney problems and put on dialysis. This caused him to miss school frequently and led to shunning and ridicule from his peers. A Christian, he found hope and comfort in his relationship with God and in meaningful friendships in his church, youth group, and regional youth activities sponsored by the Chateau of Saint Albain in Burgundy, France.

Timothée and Laëtitia met at a Christian training session and quickly became good friends. As their relationship blossomed, they excitedly began to plan their wedding. But a few months from the ceremony, Timothée’s kidney problems worsened, requiring a transplant. In answer to their prayers, God provided a donor—Timothée’s mother. Two months before their wedding, he had the operation and was out of the hospital with just two weeks to spare.

The Lord blessed them with a child, Clémence, and then Laëtitia became pregnant again. To their horror, the doctors told them that if their baby was born, he would likely live for a precious few minutes because he only had one kidney. They suggested that the couple abort their child. Timothée and Laëtitia immediately rejected the advice and insisted they would trust God no matter the outcome. Their reliance on His will was unwavering, and their son Jules was born healthy, is still thriving today, and is now an older brother to Emile.

In March, Timothée and Laëtitia, both on the leadership team of the Charis church of Montceau-les-Mines, France, contracted COVID-19, which put their faith to the test once again. After nursing his sickness at home for a week, Timothée was taken to the hospital with complications. Due to the severity of his condition and his immuno-compromised state, the hospital immediately transferred him to another hospital’s ICU, where he was intubated, medicated, and eventually put into an artificial coma as doctors began the battle to save his life.

“Papa might not come home again,” Laëtitia told her children, “but you can pray. You need to trust God as our family has done.” She proceeded to call friends and churches to pray. The Montceau church immediately jumped in to help, support, and pray for this family.

Soon believers in France, Africa, Canada, China, Holland, and the United States were earnestly praying for Timothée’s life. Laëtitia shared her trust in the Lord in every situation, openly professing her faith to colleagues, friends, and the doctors and nurses who were scrambling to help her husband. Even though she didn’t know what the outcome would be—she might never see Timothée again—Laëtitia trusted in God’s heart, and she wanted to share His love with everyone she could during this dire time.

After three weeks, the doctors told her that they had done everything they could. In this moment of intense darkness, as Laëtitia realized that her husband’s life was still utterly in God’s hands as it had always been, she knew that whatever the outcome, God would give strength. She kept praying.

Though it was true that the doctors had done everything they could, God—the Great Physician—wasn’t done with Timothée yet. This man, who the hospital staff had nicknamed “The Warrior,” took a turn for the better after medical staff gave up hope. He began to respond, coming out of the coma, and, very slowly, recovering. 

Two weeks, much care, and many prayers later, Timothée was released from the hospital and returned home, exhausted but thankful to be with his family. He was just in time for them to joyfully celebrate his 34th birthday together. After extensive physical therapy for several months, Timothée has started to rollerblade again and hopes to resume coaching his team this fall. 

Confidently, Timothée says, “God helps us fight against fear and anguish, and He teaches us patience. In difficult battles, we fight with faith in God and we don’t give up. God always decides the best for us.”