Jehovah was not in the wind. And after the wind, an earthquake: Jehovah was not in the earthquake.
And after the earthquake, a fire: Jehovah was not in the fire. And after the fire, a soft gentle voice. (1Kings 19:11-12)

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Monday, April 14, 2014

3 Prayers on Your 13th Birthday {Meditation of My Heart Mondays}


It never dawned on me when I looked down on you all pink in my arms that I would have to look up at you in a blink of an eye. At 7:02 I heard your cry for the first time after groaning in labour all that long Good Friday. We made a few calls to let family know of the safe arrival of our firstborn; our baby girl. We heard later that word went round to our friends at the Toronto Easter Conference. That's how the news traveled those days, before Facebook and insta-announcements on social media. I know I should not be surprised. I figure I will be outgrown by all my children. I honestly didn't expect it to happen so quickly.

Exactly a blink later, so it seems, we were singing a jazzed up Happy Birthday to you on Palm Sunday at 7:02 on your thirteenth birthday. Yeah, we completely forgot to sing it with your friends and family gathered around to celebrate you. You wanted home-made donuts so I mixed, rolled, cut out and we cooked up a hundred of them and friends and family surprised you and came to help you eat them all. Somehow all those people fit in our kitchen and living room and your Dad spoke words of praise for you and to your Creator and thanked family and friends for speaking words of truth into you and appealed to them to pray for you as you begin these years of becoming a young woman.









After the donuts had disappeared, friends and family had filled pages with words of love and encouragement from their heart, and they took reminders to pray for you, we counted down minutes and sang in celebration.

We blinked and I'm still learning to breath. It still hurts.

I'm not sure who has learned more in the last thirteen years. I know we have both grown in unbelievable ways. I'm also aware that I used to be taller, but the bend in my back has notched me down an inch. I thought I knew everything there was to know about being a Mother, but it took me less than 12 hours to come to the conclusion that I had a lot to learn. It's a humbling experience, to become a young Mama and realize you have a lot of growing up to do. It notched me down, made me to bend down low and surrender everything I thought I knew, admit that I can't do this in my own strength,  and cry out the One who loves you more than you or I will ever realize, to give me wisdom and grace and love.


"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father . . . that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God." (Ephesians 3:14,16-19)
I beg prayers for you, cause I've learned I don't have the slightest idea of what I am doing. I hardly knew how to grow a child and I confess to you I have no clue how to raise a young woman.

Oh, it's true, I've read a lot. Ever since we stared stunned at the two stripes, listened in pre-natal class to learn how to properly breath a baby into the world, and checked on Google to see if I really was in labour a week early, I've read and read and read some more. Turns out I didn't really need pre-natal or to search the internet. You were coming whether Google said so or not and whether I was ready or not.

I've tried a slew of what some claim to be tried and true methods of children rearing, sleep training, ways to grow children. Dabbled in some of it, but thankfully didn't get sucked in and eventually tossed them aside. You and I didn't fit the mold. We didn't work well under strict, regimented rules. We cried together and even screamed and I should have known better. But, I didn't.

We've locked horns and I've had to pick the hills to die on and you've stomped your feet and I've put my foot down. I expected perfection and we've cried together as we have grown to learn that peace is so much more precious.

I wanted an easy way to raise a perfect child. I learned that there is no easy and there is no perfect. How should a mother demand perfect when she is no where near it? But, until she's taken down a notch, she might be blinded to see what she really needs. What her children really need.

We needed grace and love. And to be granted wisdom.


"And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God." ( Colossians 1:9-10)
I'll be the first to admit that I don't know what I am doing as we venture into the years ahead. But, I try not to depend on Google anymore, but turn to God first.

I worked hard the day you were born and the day you turned thirteen. But, I don't take any credit for the young woman you are becoming. God is working in you to bring you to completion.
"For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus." (Philippians 1:6)
Not for my benefit, or even yours, but all for God's glory.

We both have a lot of growing to do, but I am thankful that I get to be your Mom. To watch you transform from a beautiful child to a beautiful young woman—and not because of the make-up you could hardly wait to get your hands on. I'm mesmerized how you care with tender heart. How you can laugh at your mistakes and cry with others who are hurting. The way you are learning to persevere when things are hard and help others even when this world tells us to help ourselves first.



And when you hugged your weary Mama the night you turned thirteen and you seemed to tower over me already as I still held you it my arms, I breathed with a sign of relief that God is growing us both in grace and He looks down on both of us and holds us in His loving embrace.
"But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen." (2 Peter 3:18)


A Soft Gentle Voice


5 comments:

  1. This is lovely. My kids are almost 7 and 4 1/2 ... I can already the time flies. It's amazing how much motherhood teaches - there's been no greater faith journey for me. I'm glad I linked up next to you at Angie's tonight.

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    1. Motherhood has taught me so much and I still have much to learn. A pleasure to have you here tonight, Kristin.

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  2. That was beautiful and heartfelt. What an honest, loving tribute to Larissa! May the Lord continue to bless your relationship! (Rachel:)

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  3. What a sweet way to honor your daughter on her 13th birthday. My girls are grown are now my best friends. All that energy you put into them ... pays off. Many blessings to you and your daughter on 13 years together.

    Fondly,
    Glenda

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  4. Happy belated birthday to your sweet daughter, Rebekah. What a beautiful post. Truly beautiful. The time does go by so quickly and while I spent my children's younger years not knowing Christ, I'm so grateful to now have Him as my guide, and my strength, through these adult years...because we never stop being their mom. Much love to you, friend.

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