Dangerous Girls

Dangerous Girls

IMG_5384Tonight before dinner, Lydia said our blessing and it went like this, “God, please protect our food. We love you. Amen.” As soon as she finished, Matt said, “Do you think we pray about protection too much?” Ouch. I’m seeing my struggle with fear creep into my daughter, and I don’t like it. I don’t like it at all.

It reminded me of a blog Jen Hatmaker wrote a little while back, Brave Moms Raise Brave Kids. I doubt the word “brave” has ever been used to describe me, but I’m on a mission to change that. These words from Jen’s blog have stuck with me…

I don’t want to be the reason my kids choose safety over courage. I hope I never hear them say, “Mom will freak out,” or “My parents will never agree to this.” May my fear not bind their purpose here. Scared moms raise scared kids. Brave moms raise brave kids. Real disciples raise real disciples.

And Jen goes on to share a story from Erwin McManus, a story that gives me chills every time I read it…

One summer Aaron went to a youth camp. He was just a little guy, and I was kind of glad because it was a church camp. I figured he wasn’t going to hear all those ghost stories, because ghost stories can really cause a kid to have nightmares. But unfortunately, since it was a Christian camp and they didn’t tell ghost stories, because we don’t believe in ghosts, they told demon and Satan stories instead. And so when Aaron got home, he was terrified.

“Dad, don’t turn off the light!” he said before going to bed. “No, Daddy, could you stay here with me? Daddy, I’m afraid. They told all these stories about demons.”

And I wanted to say, “They’re not real.”

He goes, “Daddy, Daddy, would you pray for me that I would be safe?”

I could feel it. I could feel warm-blanket Christianity beginning to wrap around him, a life of safety, safety, safety.

I said, “Aaron, I will not pray for you to be safe. I will pray that God will make you dangerous, so dangerous that demons will flee when you enter the room.”

And he goes, “All right. But pray I would be really, really dangerous, Daddy.”

So, tonight as I laid Charlotte down in her crib and tucked Lydia under her covers, I changed my prayer. Instead of asking God to protect them, I prayed He would make them dangerous girls, brave girls. Girls who make the enemy tremble. This mom isn’t naturally very brave, but I’ve let fear control me for far too long. It’s time to get a little dangerous.

Lottie Dot

Lottie Dot

ImageWe had sweet Charlotte’s dedication this weekend and it was such a special time. I love the way Highpoint does dedication now. They host a dedication brunch where the parents get to invite a table of family and friends to gather around you while you make your commitments to your child. It was such a special day!

Matt & I wrote the following words to our precious Charlotte Anne…

Charlotte Anne,
You are an incredible blessing to us. When we look at you, we see a beautiful reminder of God’s unending faithfulness. We are so grateful God chose us to be your parents. Knowing that God has entrusted us with the incredible responsibility of training you to be a woman of God, we commit to model for you the kind of person we desire to see you become.

We pray, first and foremost, that you love God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength and with all your mind. (Luke 10:27)

We pray that you love others as Christ loves them. (1 John 4:19) We pray that ministry fills your heart and that you get rich joy from serving God by loving His people.

We pray that you find your identity in Christ alone for in Him we live and move and have our being. (Acts 17:28)

We pray that you fulfill God’s unique purpose for your life and that your life will display God’s splendor. They will called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor. (Isaiah 61:3)

In addition to modeling these character qualities, we also commit to model for you a godly marriage. We commit to stay married and to continually invest in our marriage for the rest of our lives. We commit to enjoy a date night with just the two of us twice a month so that we can enjoy time alone strengthening our marriage. We commit to each be mentored by someone a little further down the road, someone who can teach us, sharpen us and hold us accountable. We commit to have a daily priority time where we study and apply God’s Word so that we can be transformed. We commit to give and serve joyfully and sacrificially.

We make these commitments knowing we are two imperfect people and that we will certainly make mistakes as parents. We want you to know that we love you deeply on your best day and your worst. We hope that we will be able to show you a reflection of God’s balance of truth and grace in our home. We love you dearly, and we cannot wait to see the plans God has for you.

Lottie, even though you’ve only been in our lives for seven months, I have a hard time remembering what life was like before you. It’s funny how you don’t even realize someone is missing until you’ve known the joy that person brings to every day. Your contagious smile and those big blue eyes get me every. single. time. I love you, Lottie Dot.

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Dancing Shoes

Dancing Shoes

ImageYesterday was so much fun. The shimmer of tulle, the creaminess of silk, the color of fresh pearls and the shiny pop of black patent shoes. The sweet smell of blush roses, a million tiny lights twinkling above and a decadent chocolate cake with tangy cream cheese icing. It was perfect. 

I love everything about weddings, especially when the bride is one of my closest friends. I feel quite confident my daughter now loves them too. Yesterday, Lydia was flower girl alongside her best friend Lynnlee. For months now, we’ve been talking about this wedding and she cared really about two things. The first, her dress. The second, dancing. 

My girl loves to dance. We do it nearly every day. She dances in restaurants, in Target, even in the bathroom. If she hears a song, she looks up at me and, without saying a word, I know exactly what she’s asking, “Momma, will you dance with me?” I haven’t always loved to dance. In middle school and high school, I cared far too much for what others thought of me. And in college I pretended I had more important things to do with my time. But deep down inside I wanted to dance. I wanted to not care what others thought, to be silly and laugh, to just enjoy that sweet moment. 

My little girl is teaching me to do just that. We danced so much last night that my feet are quite sore today. (My friend Melody even taught me the Wobble. Hilarity ensued.) There’s something so freeing about dancing. You can act like a kid, carefree and completely confident in who you are. When she’s all grown up, I know I’ll look back on these moments dancing together, whether in our living room or on the dance floor, with a smile. Remembering the feel of her small hand in mine, her silky hair swirling around and those eyes just sparkling. Keep on dancin’, Lydi. I’ll be right there beside you.