Bethel Music's Kalley Heiligenthal Reflects on Her First Valentine's After the Death of Her Daughter Olive

Olive Alayne Heiligenthal

Valentine's Day came with a ring of sadness as well as hope for Bethel Music's worship leader Kalley Heiligenthal. This is the first Valentine's Day the Heiligenthal family are spending without Olive. Last year on December 14th, Kelly and her husband Andrew's beautiful little girl, Olive Alayne, unexpectedly stopped breathing in her sleep. The doctors have pronounced her as dead.  Olive was 2 years old, vivacious, full of wonder, full of life. Nevertheless, Kalley Heiligenthal hopes that her daughter would be ressurected.  However, Olive did not rise from the dead.

For the Heiligenthal household, Valentine's Day was filled with lots of memories of Olive. Kalley writes: "Tragedy is the great exposer. It exposes the kind of dad who brings bright flowers to his little girl's burial site, because dads are their little girls' valentines and girls deserve flowers. It demonstrates the kind of husband who gives from what he has and most impressively, what he doesn't. The kind of sister who decorates "I Love You Olive" cakes and insists on setting photos of her all around the house to reference her throughout our day."

Yet, in such times of pain, God has not been silent to Kalley.  God was using Kalley's own music to speak to her. "The kind of God who asked me to write and release songs as comfort for trauma, and then 6 weeks later tells me they're for us, for Elsie, to be played over her as she sleeps. The sound of my voice, my lyrics He uses as a lullaby over my 3 year old when I can't find the words. It shows the sort of shepherd who isn't afraid of any valley place and will not let me get trapped in any part as we walk it through."

Kalley is also grateful for the support of her church and friends. "It uncovers the caliber of friends who go to war with you and hold you up when you can't support your own weight. A beautiful Church who rises to the heights of Jesus' words and from that vantage point sees there's no view besides victory. It lays bare what we actually believe. It shows breathtaking generosity.

"It illuminates the kind of daughter who left me with so many heartwarming memories in her 2 short years here plus 9 months inside me. Olive brought and continues to bring the best out of me. And the kind of Jesus who would use that little girl to nudge awake His body. In it we see the type of Father who knows the searing ache of separation from the ones He loves, longing to be close to His kids, willing to do anything to bring them back to Him. And then does it, leaving no gravestone unturned. The kind of triumph where loss is only temporary and every enemy is made a mockery. In these most unthinkable days, we are surrounded by love, no side left unkissed by kindness. The exposure uncovers how thoroughly love covers it all."

A veteran member of the Bethel Music worship collective, Kalley Heiligenthal also serves as a second-year worship pastor at Bethel's School of Supernatural Ministry. Co-writer of the popular praise anthem "Ever Be," which was nominated for a 2017 Dove Award for Worship Song of the Year, Kalley's "Every Crown" is featured on Bethel Music's latest Dove-nominated, best-selling compilation VICTORY. She is part of "The VICTORY Tour," hitting 10 cities across the country this fall. Showcased on Bethel Music's first Spanish language release, Bethel Music En Español, singing "Por Siempre" and "Sopla Espíritu," Kalley is also featured on the Bethel Music compilations Starlight (2017), Have it All (2016) and We Will Not Be Shaken (2015).   

Tags : bethel music Kalley Heiligenthal Reflects on Her First Valentine's After the Death of Her Daughter Olive Kalley Heiligenthal Olive Heiligenthal Kalley Heiligenthal's Daughter Has Stopped Breathing

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