Wednesday, June 22, 2016

To Elizabeth as you turn 4

Sweet girl, it is a true joy to be your momma. To think four years have unfolded before our eyes seems crazy. You often ask, "Mommy, can you remember when I was really little, like a baby?" And yes, I sure can. Holding your sweet little body and snuggling you in...I remember it like yesterday. That's why this business of you turning four seems so crazy and yet so fitting.

They say the days are long and the years are short and that's the truth isn't it? Some days are extremely long but these 4 years have gone by so quickly. It's been a joy to watch you grow and learn and develop just the way God saw fit.

Here's some things about you Elizabeth Mae that we don't want to forget.

1. You are the most sensitive, sweet, and full of love girl I know. The way you care for others and love deeply is overwhelming. You feel the emotions of others, you guard your sister with care, you love fiercely and more than that you know what true, genuine, Godly love looks like and feels like. Your expressions as you understand more and your jokes and silliness are so much more developed and refined. You have the kindest things to say and you love to build people up and remind them of Gospel truth. I'm often the recipient of your sweet encouragement when I'm frustrated or things are not going quite right and I'm thankful for your words. I pray you will hold fast to the truth and share wisdom with others in a kind and loving manner as you grow.

2. You are a social bug. The extrovert to our introvert. We've met more neighbors and people at the park and everywhere we go because of your love for people. I'll be honest, it's been a bit tricky for us to navigate, your daddy and I, but we are thankful for your love of people and desire to know and care for others. You've pulled us out of our comfort zones and we are thinkful for that but more than it being about us, it's been incredible to watch you when you are in your social element.

3. While you follow the rules, you have this tenacious, determined and stubborn side of you as well. You know what you like and what is right and what you don't and what is wrong. I pray we can lead you well in this area, showing you how to follow and lead with grace and truth. To humbly admit your mistakes while continuing to work hard towards your goals.

4. You faced your fears this year over and over again and are learning what hard work and determination can result in. Swimming lessons last year were a disaster but this year we cannot get you out of the pool and lessons have been a highlight of your day. It's a priviledge to be able to watch you push yourself and gain confidence in areas you were less confident in. You determination serves you well in this regard. Alongside learning to swim you have danced in your first dance recital, learned to downhill ski and ice skate, and learned to ride a two wheeler sans training wheels on the second try. It's evident when you are interested in something you are willing and ready to put in the hard work to give it your all. I'm grateful for your tenacity and willingness to try new things without letting others stop you.

5. You have your own unique sense of style and fancy. Lately you love picking out your own combinations of clothing and accessories and enjoy getting all fancied up. While you are equally comfortable in your play clothes and tennis shoes, you have an inner love for sparkles and dress up and fancy that is so fun.

6. This year you grew leaps and bounds in your understanding of God and the Gospel. Over Easter weekend, you, in faith, responded to the Lord's call on your heart to follow Him. It's been a joy to teach you and help you understand who God is and what sin is and the glorious thing that is grace. You loved Super Bible Club and AWANA and BSF. With gusto you dove in to learn and understand hard concepts and brought an abundance of questions our way that we were more than happy to attempt to answer. Sweet girl, we pray that you will hold on to the testimony of faith you proclaimed with all that you are as you grow and experience the years to come. It's our joy to walk alongside of you and point you to Jesus.

7. You love being with us. The joy and excitement that is on your face when you know all four of us are going to be together is truly a blessing. Add on grandma or nana or any other family member and you are on cloud nine. You revel in quality time and appreciate tradition. You enthusiasm to be together is contagious. I pray this will continue and you will always love being with your parents and your relationship with your sister will grow to be a sweet sweet sisterhood.

8. You love to sing. I'm so grateful for your sweet voice that sings hymns and songs and makes them up sometimes as well. It's a beautiful thing music and you have a love for it wherever we go. In fact "Holy Holy Holy", the songs from the church G.O.D cd, and a few others get literally belted out in shopping malls, stores, and the like. I love it. Dance parties are also usually to follow and your daddy and I love joining in.

9. You love to draw. This has developed more lately and we often find you out in your daddy's office with some paper and a pen making sweet drawings for your family. I love hearing about your pictures as there are usually intricate and detailed plots that accompany them. It's never just a picture for you. I pray you continue to enjoy being creative and as you create that you will see and know Creator God all the more.

10. You are a bookworm. You love to make up stories and read stories. You often sit in your room and "read" books before you fall asleep. Sometimes you even hide piles under your covers so we don't see how many you've pulled into bed. It's hard for me to disapprove as I was exactly the same way as a kid. Always my nose in a book. Praying this serves you well as you continue to learn and soak up knowledge. May books take you to a place of respite, give you comfort and teach you as you grow!

As your parents there are things we hope for and we pray for but most of all dear girl we pray that you would follow hard after Jesus all your days, not being swayed by what the world is whispering to you but holding fast to the promises in the word of God. We pray that you would fall in love with Jesus, knowing He's with you throughout your days, depending upon Him, looking to Him for your worth, and finding rest in His faithful arms.

Being your momma is about the best thing that's ever happened to me past following Jesus and marrying your daddy. It's my joy dear girl to spend my days with you. There isn't anywhere else I'd rather be.

Happy Birthday Elizabeth Mae!

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