7.08.2015

Regent Law Student Donates Part of Her Liver to Five-Year-Old Stranger

Molly Bricker (right) visits with Sage and Sage's mother
after surgery. Photo courtesy of A Liver for Sage
Facebook page.
 
It was just a regular day at the nail salon. Molly Bricker, a rising 2L in Regent University's School of Law, was in the midst of her very first round of challenging finals in December 2014. She sat with her friend waiting among the colorful splashes of nail polish when a news story on the salon's television screen caught her eye:

The little girl’s name was Sage, a five-year-old from Portsmouth, Virginia, who was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia as an infant – and in dire need of a new liver. Her early illness required a bone marrow transplant, rendering her blood type different from the rest of her family.

Bricker was struck. "I remember thinking, 'This little girl is so cute, and so small and so happy,'" said Bricker. "I didn't even know you could donate a portion of your liver. But in that moment God made it really clear that I had to do something."

Bricker spent the next hour before her exam on the phone, discerning whether she'd be a blood-type match and beginning the donor application process. Bricker was later notified several others were ahead of her on the list, so she began making plans to spend her summer months bolstering her legal career with a prestigious clerkship. She thought she was "off the hook."

But her story wouldn't end there. "I'd almost forgotten about it when they told me I was on the top of the donor list," said Bricker.

Recalling how strongly she felt when she first learned Sage's story, Bricker moved forward with testing in early June to see if she was a match. Tests on Monday, June 1, proved she was. Her surgery would be that Thursday. Surgery and recovery meant she needed to turn down the summer clerkship.

"The week before the surgery, God was constantly reminding me that He was in control," said Bricker. "I tend to need a schedule, I need a routine. So, I was shocked by my lack of anxiety I had throughout the process, which I 100 percent attribute to God."

So, what is it that prompts a first-year law student to start the organ donation process during finals week? Bricker attributes it to nothing other than God's conviction. "It was definitely a challenge, but because I felt so sure that this was what the Lord wanted me to do, I just trusted that He would sustain me," said Bricker.

Sage is now in recovery, supported by a portion of Bricker's liver that will continue to grow as she does. Bricker's own liver is expected to heal to its full size within the next few months as she recovers with her family in Massachusetts.

"Every day I'm feeling better," she said, explaining her recovery process has entailed eating lots of protein – specifically hamburgers." The body craves what it needs, I guess. I'm a hungry, hungry person," Bricker said with a laugh. Bricker experienced a hunger for something much more than burgers, though. She's experienced a hunger for justice and God's sovereignty.

Her story has been told by several local and national news organizations. But whether she's entertaining an interview with the local news or People Magazine, her humble, yet convicting takeaway is seamless.

"Anybody who's asked about my experience, I've just wanted them to hear about God's sovereignty. He's the only reason I applied, and the only reason the surgery was successful," said Bricker. "Everyone who writes about this needs to know that God is the focal point, that's all I really want."

By Brett Wilson Tubbs | July 6, 2015