Friday, August 31, 2012

The Greatest Gift

As I sit here, typing with one hand because my child is laying on me, I can't help but praise God for such a sweet gift. This is probably the best gift I've ever received. I didn't even know how much I wanted it until I got it. The gift...? My daughter.

This is the gift that keeps on giving.

Along with this gift came the gift parenthood, naturally; which changes your entire life. In the best way imaginable, of course!

This is the most rewarding gift.

My daughter is beautiful, sweet, charming, delightful, sassy, tender, compassionate and forgiving.

In the two year's I've known her, I've learned the following things:

  • Patience. Patience. Patience.
  • The little things do matter.
  • Sometimes we just need to be held.
  • Everyone deserves a hello.
  • Everyone deserves a sweet smile (her's is infectious).
  • You are always playing a game of follow the leader. (Hint: You're always the leader)
  • Do you have two legs? Good. Stand firm. Do... not... buckle.... no matter how cute her "no!" sounds.

There are many many many things she has taught me. Not sure who the teacher is in the situation. I think we are learning just as much from each other. 

One thing I've realized is that she is not my own. This gift, her life, was given, no, entrusted rather, to Aaron and I. Our gracious Lord bestowed her upon us; which we humbly accepted. To think He is giving us a life to take of, to treasure, and to provide guidance to is... well, an honor! 

Earlier today as I was praying over Gavi's life, I prayed that she would be like nothing in this world. That she would be different. Be filled with God's Holy Spirit, confidence, and wisdom. That she would have the gift of discernment. It is not good enough that she will know good from bad. I pray for her character to mimic Jesus'. I pray that every decision she makes that she seeks her Father first and foremost. The only way she will learn these things is if her parents model these things first.

She challenges us. She motivates us. She encourages us.

Because here is the thing. She is not our own. Are we responsible for her? Sure. But at the end of my life I want to know that I have done everything I could to show her what it means to be a disciple of Christ, and then for her to do the same with her family, her daughters, her sons. For it then this pattern begins, and we begin to see generations seeking the glory of God. 

This is gift is precious. It is not a burden, but pure joy. The gift of parenthood is a gift that I wish everyone was willing to accept, open mindedly. I think that if we were to stop and think about the responsibility, the impact, the opportunity that sits in front of us -- wide-eyed, full of excitement and energy -- we may begin to fully receive the gift that God is trying to give us. 

I am far from the "perfect" parent. We skip baths. We eat candy. We dance in our skivvies. This is an idea, a theology of parenthood that I have to continually remind myself of. I've learned in the moments of impatience, tiredness, and weakness is the perfect place to pray. 

"I'm not raising my kids to survive the world. I'm raising them to change it." || Steven Furtick, Sun Stand Still

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