Revival in the Valley: Honoring the Legacy of Selah Mathew

By: Alyssa Mendez
Has loss or pain ever led you to doubt God’s goodness? You’re not alone. In the Bible, we see examples of godly men and women who brought their questions and grief to the Lord. This is exactly what CCA High School students have been encouraged to do in response to the passing of one of their peers – Selah Mathew. Learn how Selah’s legacy and her family’s steadfast faith has sparked a spiritual revival at CCA Fort Lauderdale.

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On Good Friday – March 29, 2024 – Selah Mathew, a 10th grade student at Calvary Christian Academy Fort Lauderdale, passed away and entered into eternal rest in heaven.

She was an exemplary student, compassionate leader, and talented dancer who exuded the joy of the Lord. We are comforted knowing that Selah is dancing on those streets of gold and is face-to-face with God because she had a relationship with His Son – Jesus Christ – and accepted Him as her Lord and Savior.

“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.” –John 11:25
The Mathew Family has demonstrated what it looks like to have Christ as your firm foundation when the rains and winds of life come. Their response has inspired so many and has even led to salvations and baptisms within the CCA community. Selah’s dad, Jason Mathew, helped baptize a group of high school students the same weekend as his daughter’s memorial and burial. Witnessing these young lives transform was an answer to prayer for Mr. Mathew. The day before Selah experienced her medical emergency and was hospitalized, the Holy Spirit prompted him to walk around our campus to pray for revival.

Mr. Mathew shared this story and other aspects of his testimony during a recent High School Chapel for upperclassmen (9th and 10th graders will hear from him on April 17). He was joined by Pastor Bill Schott – CCA’s High School Bible Department Head – and together, they addressed the following questions students have been wrestling with in response to Selah’s passing:

  1. Why do we spend so much time praying if God is just going to do what He wants to do anyway?

  2. Selah spent so much time working, studying, and taking hard classes, but now she's in heaven and will never think about another exam again. What's the point of working in life if it's not going to matter in the end?

Their responses were not only bathed in wisdom, but also revealed how God was intricately involved in the details and moved in ways that only He could. If you have wrestled with your faith in response to this loss or perhaps another loss/trial in your life, we pray this Chapel speaks to your heart.

Our finite minds will never be able to grasp God’s sovereignty and plans, but amidst the divine mystery and pain, we continue to trust in Him and believe that He is good. It is during such times that He desires for us to draw close to Him and find safety in the shadow of His wings. The shortest verse in the Bible – “Jesus wept” – reminds us that we don’t weep alone; He weeps with us during our darkest hours.

Wherever you are today, may Selah’s life verse remind you that you are not alone and there’s always a reason to have hope:

“When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.”

–Isaiah 43:2
If you would like to watch the services that were held at Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale in honor of Selah’s life and legacy, you can click on the links below:

Every prayer and act of service was truly felt, and we are sincerely grateful for everyone – locally and internationally – who interceded on behalf of Selah when she was hospitalized and behalf of her family. We ask that you continue to keep the Mathew Family in your prayers as they walk out this new season.

In response to more students desiring to get baptized, the Upper School community will be gathering together at the Pompano Beach Pier on Sunday, April 14 at noon. You’re welcome to join us in person as we celebrate these public declarations of faith and thank God for the revival He has started.

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