Wednesday, November 18, 2015

CELEBRATING MY DAUGHTER, MY SISTER

Every night, we tuck our kiddos into bed and ask three questions.

"How much do I love you?"   - THIS MUCH
"When will that ever stop?"    - NEVER
"Who loves you the most?"    - JESUS

John started it years ago, and now, it is second nature.  We love the Lord, and it is our greatest hope and desire that our children will know and love him as well.  It has been my prayer since they were each born.  I always knew that giving Jesus to our children would be a big part of the way that we parent, and it is a bit trickier than I imagined to lead them towards Jesus without shoving him down their throats.  I want our children to respond to Jesus' love for each of them - I don't want them to ever feel pressured into accepting Christ to please their parents.

Both John and I became Christians at very young ages, and we both sincerely believe we accepted Christ when we were young.  That being said, we both remember growing in knowledge and truth and solidifying our faith when were were in middle school and high school.  We believe it is a faith journey and that ultimately, the Holy Spirit is the guide for each person's heart.  I cannot, nor should not, force my child to believe something just because I believe it.

Honestly, this is one of the hardest things I face as a parent: knowing that each of my children has a free will to choose their own path.  I cannot control any of their destinies.  As a parent, it is easy to want to manipulate their futures into what I think might be good for each of them.  But, I trust that God knows what is best for each one of my children.  One of my specific prayers is that my children will trust God at an early age, and that they will understand how much he loves them and want to love him back.

A couple of weeks ago, I began to see fruit from this prayer, and it is such a joy.  Lily showed me these pictures that she had drawn over the weekend, and I was amazed to see what all was going on inside of her mind, unbeknownst to me.

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(God and Lily)
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(God loves the whole world.)
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(A treasure map pointing to where God is.)
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(A bridge where God helps you get to where God is.  Over the frogs and fish, of course.)

I was a bit stunned and also delighted as I asked her questions and heard about the way she understood things.  About a week later, when I was tucking the girls into bed, Bella actually started talking about how Jesus is always knocking on our hearts.  This is something they've talked about at church recently.  Lily piped up saying that she had let Jesus into her heart.  We talked a while longer, and I can honestly say that I can see the Lord working inside of her.  I am amazed and so thankful.

We celebrated with a dinner at our typical "birthday" restaurant complete with a Chocolate Mess, which was handily devoured.  

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It is such a joy to know that my daughter is now my sister in Christ as well.  I did ask for and receive Lily's permission to share this on the blog, because it is her story.  I look forward to seeing the way that the Lord continues to work in each of us!  And just so you don't get the idea that my six-year-old is super spiritual, most drawings in the house aren't themed like this.  Saturday morning, we woke up to the girls pledging allegiance to the flag that they had drawn and taped up into the corner of our room.

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I still need to take it down.  I guess we're just ultra spiritual AND patriotic.  :)


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