Children, Christianity, Parenthood, Uncategorized

Wake up, You Sleepy Head

sleepI love this picture of Rowan as a tiny baby. He looks so peaceful, asleep in my mom’s living room. Amazing that he could do that with everyone sitting around him, staring at him being adorable just by breathing.

God is always asking me to get out of bed before I feel ready. This has been going on for years, and sometimes I’m very diligent about it, whereas at others I hit snooze or forget to set an alarm in the first place.

But over the last week or so I’ve been getting even more of those messages from Him. At church this week the pastor made a passing comment about rising early, and then later that day I read it somewhere again, not even in connection with God, but with the same message of getting my butt out of the bed before the last possible minute.

Now, I’m an early riser anyway. It’s not as if I’m throwing on a sweatshirt and grabbing the kids a granola bar for the road as we leave for school each morning. I always get up, get ready, put on makeup, make them a good breakfast. Each and every school day. On days off my oldest and I may snuggle a bit, but the little guy generally demands milk, so I’m not sleeping in.

But what does all that sound like? It sounds like me. I get up early so that I can look good. Preparing the kids’ breakfast doesn’t take that long, really. The majority of my morning routine is spent in front of the mirror if I’m really being honest.

So Monday I tried something new. Nothing groundbreaking, but a test-run of sorts. I got up when my husband’s alarm went off at 6am, leaving me about 45 minutes of quiet time before my oldest came running into the room. I didn’t put on makeup or change out of pajamas. In fact, I only brushed my teeth and then got back in bed with my bible and devotional.

But listen, Monday was a GOOD day. I didn’t have any meltdowns or moments of huge stress. I was even able to take the kids to Target, come home and make lunches, and put them down for naps without too much fuss on their part or mine.

Did God give me some kind of epiphany for taking the time to rise and meet him, as I was? Not in any lighting bolt, dramatic fashion. But I think maybe he did in a “gentle whisper” kind of way. This is what your days can be like if you give them to me. This is how you could mother if you allow me to nurture you first.

But guess what? Each day has been more and more of a struggle to grab that time. Monday was easy – I didn’t have to take the kids anywhere. I didn’t have to put on my mask so that humanity wouldn’t freak out over a bare face. But the world tells me I need to cover these dark circles and blonde lashes, so I do it.

Today I read 1 chapter of the bible while nursing my son. Griffin back-talked me after breakfast for one of the very first times, and I didn’t respond as I know I should have.

Would the outcome have looked different if I had gotten up with enough time to start my day with God? I’m not sure. But maybe I need to do more than a 1 day experiment to find out.

 

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Baby, Christianity, Home, Parenthood

A Day of Dedication

Two Sundays ago we dedicated Griffin to God among family and friends at our home. It was one of the sweetest moments I’ve had with our little boy.

DedicationThe entire day seemed as if it truly had been set aside and blessed. Griffin’s naps were long and sound, he woke smiling and laughing, and when the guests arrived he presented the very best side of himself. Even during the actual dedication, he looked as if he really did understand what was going on. He knew we were doing something very important, and that he was a big part of it!

Hands

Dedication2It meant so much to have such a big group of people come and support us in this. We wanted the day to be all about God and family, and couldn’t have felt more blessed when almost every single person we invited RSVP’d.

Decor3

Decor

Decor2Our friend (the very same person who married us almost four years ago) gave the blessing, presenting it in a way that was both relatable and completely unique. He took verses from the bible that were special to Jeremy and I, and used them to present a message regarding Jewish customs and the rites of passage for young men. Our life verse, Isaiah 61:3, was also featured. We are the trees of righteousness, and Griffin is becoming rooted and grounded, as well.

CakeWithin that message, he also gave a challenge to each person present – that they write Griffin a letter for his 13th and 18th birthdays. In this letter, they would discuss this day of dedication. He also recorded his message beforehand, so that Griffin would be able to listen to what was spoken over him when those birthdays arrive.

Food2

FoodThe house looked beautiful and the food was delicious. These photos are all actually up on Project Nursery, where hopefully it will inspire others who are thinking about planning a baby dedication. But this day was definitely centered on something much more lasting than hors d’oeuvres.

MomsI’m so glad we chose to do it this way, and not simply take him up front at church for a brief prayer. I’m also really glad that we waited until he was a little older, so that he could be a part of the day and not stare into space in between naps. This is certainly something we will repeat if we ever have any more children!

You can rate the dedication on Project Nursery here!

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