Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Letter to My Five Year Old

November 24, 2009

Dear Joshua Caleb,

Happy 5th birthday to you, son! FIVE years old! Big stuff!

Since you're the oldest, you know the drill. Mommy likes to write you kiddos birthday letters (especially since I'll never complete another Baby Book again. Actually, did I ever finish yours?). But, I'm switching things up on you. This round I'm simply going to share one story of how I know God is at work in you. Listen up.

The other day I got a glimpse of just how much God is at work, wooing you to come to His Son, Jesus. Remember the M&M day? I'll remind you.

I walked into the room and caught you, red-handed, sneaking M&Ms from the candy dish. I was so hurt I couldn't even find the words to say to you. I shook my head and walked into the kitchen. You quickly came after me and asked me what you should do with the M&M still in your hand. I shrugged and said, "Whatever."

But this is where I saw God at work! You threw the M&M's away and broke out into deep sobbing! Immediately I knew you were really crying. After a few minutes of me holding you I asked you why you were crying. You said, "Because I'm sad."

Not expecting much of an answer from you, I was shocked when you told me, "Because I disobeyed!" Again, more sobbing.

Why do I share that? Because my greatest prayer for you (and all your siblings too) is to see your sin and to turn from it as you put your trust in Jesus! Oh there is NOTHING better than Jesus!

So, I am more aware of God's hand on your life and your heart and mind beginning to understand how corrupt it is and how you desperately need the Savior. In fact, it's only been days since the M&M incident but I continue to see your heart softening as you confess your sin and grow in sorrowfulness.

Thank you for being so teachable. Thank you for listening so closely during out Circle Times. Thank you for asking such thoughtful questions. I believe those traits will serve you well in your lifetime.

Happy Birthday, my son. How I love you and thank God for you. I love being your Mommy!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Eight Years of Marriage

Oh my Papa-son!

As I write this you're at an annual meeting for one of your properties. I just got all the kiddos down and though there are million things I want to get done before you get home tonight I MUST stop and publicly acknowledge our Eighth Anniversary!

Last night we had a good time going through our wedding scrapbook. As we read it aloud side by side on our couch we laughed SO hard seeing how utterly foolish and out of our minds we were! Can you believe it took us EIGHT years to see that your mother's name was misspelled in the wedding program!? And to think we gave people only around 2 weeks to RSVP! What laughs we probably provided for so many who attended the wedding! We were so young and clueless! It is humbling to see a bit of who we were not that long ago.

But, praise God, He did not leave us like we were then! Granted, I wouldn't mind fitting into a size 4 again, I thank God He knew just what we were doing back then and has kindly worked it out for our good and His glory. Only God could write a story like ours. I still marvel that I'm married to a white guy (who deep down thinks he's black) and that we have five children. When did that happen?

Here we are, much heavier and wider than we once were... We are laughing more, kissing more, going to one another for help more, talking and listening more, encouraging one another more, seeking forgiveness and covering offenses more. Do you remember reading and talking about The Prayer of Jabez? I think you read it first and gave me the book, maybe? Anyway, God certainly has "expanded" our "territory," eh? Yes, the boundary "lines have fallen for [us] in pleasant places."

What's my conclusion? There is NO place on earth I'd rather be than by your side, my prince. Everything is sweeter when I experience it with you for you help me see just how marvelous He is!

Thank you for learning that Babyface song and proposing to me eight years and five weeks ago! God is so good to me!

I love you, Hby!

P.S. Have I told you today that I think you're sexy?

Princess Saraina, Happy 4th!

November 5, 2009

Sweet Saraina-bug,

Daddy and I remember it so well. Four years ago today I made Daddy drive through Chik Fil-a TWICE as we were out shopping. Perhaps that was the help you needed for my water broke shortly after we got home that afternoon and you burst into the world less than 10 minutes after arriving at the hospital. Boy, you came FAST! And from the beginning, we loved our first princess.

You have so many neat qualities about you and so many things that make you so unique to us. Often I watch you from a distance and think, "Where'd she get that from?" and the only answer would be our amazing Savior, Jesus. Of course, I also see those things that Daddy and I want to address early so that you might live your life in a manner worthy of the Gospel. God kindly is granting Daddy and I eyes to see areas we can focus on to help you live to God and die to self. So, all that to say, I so enjoy just watching you, taking in it all.

In watching you I see how much you have grown in one year and how quickly our time with you might be going by. You amaze me at what you can read. Granted, we're not talking Pilgrim's Progress but I vividly remember my second and even fourth graders not being able to read short vowel words.

I love how you are all girl, wearing pink and purple, "decorating" your hair, and caring for your babies. But you love playing tough with your brothers! Yes. You can hold your own wrestling with them. This picture says it all me. Climbing a rope ladder with a jean skirt on boots!

You are growing so much in listening. How critical it is to be a good listener! As Daddy leads us in our morning Bible time you sit and really focus on what he is sharing. While the full comprehension will come later, you are putting forth good effort in trying.

You and Joshua have always had a special relationship since you're so close in age but it is really a blessing to see you and Kadin developing a sweet relationship. Oh he adores his "Nan nan!"

But, it certainly isn't hard to see why he adores you so much and why Joshua and Paloma seek you out to play. We love you, precious girl!

Mommy (and Daddy too!)