These Little People
They were wearing hand-me-downs, and they both looked terribly adorable, and their smiles were squeezing my heart JUST so, and. Oh. My. Goodness. So, I sat them on the bench and took some pictures with my phone before jumping in the car to head to church.
I took four of each before my phone told me I had no more space. I was bummed I didn't have room for a shot of them together. I deleted one of each that was blurry with movement, and these are the moments captured.
I love our porch.
I love that bench.
I LOVE these little people.
The LORD is good to me, and so I thank the LORD.
Over and over again.
"Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward." Psalm 127:3
This one I cling to and hope for as my children grow.
"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth." 3 John 1:4
I will do my best to continue to share the Good News with them often so that they may know the gift they've been given. I want them to always do what the Lord requires of them (and of me!):"...to act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with [our] God." Micah 6:8
Isn't that something beautiful to want for our children? For them to be just, to love and be merciful, and to be humble?
I think it is. When I was looking for the correct wording of the above verse, I came across this one, and it really struck a nerve.
"Parents, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." Ephesians 6:4
How often do we want our own way which leads to anger or frustration in our children? I'm not referring to house rules being broken or children doing something that could be dangerous. I'm talking about personal preferences that, when it boils down to it, it's not worth the battle or the anger of either person involved. I'm guessing those moments happen far more often with teenagers, but we have had a few battles of our own already :).
I want my children to obey and I want them to do it joyfully (as much as they can), and right now, it's pretty easy. Jack obeys pretty well for such a little guy, and he usually does it with a happy heart because he likes to please us. There are moments of disobedience, but I'm learning to pick my battles and to help him obey instead of getting irritated that he's not listening.
I think what I'm most desiring is for a friendship with my adult children. I want them to look back on their childhood with fondness. I know several people who can't remember much good from the years of being reared by their parents, and it makes me so incredibly sad for them. I had a wonderful childhood full of sweet memories. My parents loved me and disciplined me and held me to a standard which was high but not out of reach. There were rules and chores. There were consequences to my actions--good or bad. And now, though I still see them as my parents, I now count them as friends.
My good friend Tina (who never reads this blog but who I love anyway haha!) has that kind of relationship with her kids, too, and in the nearly 10 years I've known their sweet family, I have been in awe. I've seen the way they relate to one another. They are kind and loving. They laugh and joke (but never in a mean or caustic way) with each other. They LOVE their momma with a fierceness, and they call her their friend. They are kind human beings who have grown into such Godly people. I want THAT for my kiddos.
Her son Ryan (my Man of Honor in our wedding) is a worship leader in our old church. He's an amazing singer/musician with a heart for the Lord and for people. He has recorded an album (which we got in the mail a few days ago!!!) that is phenomenal. Watch some videos and hear some music here: http://www.ryankennedymusic.net/#!music-page/c1q4n
Y'all, I just feel the Lord speaking to me today, and I want to write it down because I don't want to forget.
Maybe you struggle with these things, too. Or maybe you've found the balance, and your children "rise up and call you blessed." Maybe they see a woman who loves them more than she loves having her own way. A woman who puts others above herself and rarely reacts out of anger. A woman who sets the example for her children to be Micah 6:8 people.
I want to strive to be that woman, and I think having these as our family verses will help me:
"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for it is right. 'Honor your father and mother'--which is the first commandment with a promise--'so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy a long life on the earth.' Parents, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." Ephesians 6:1-4
Do you have a good relationship with your parents or your adult kids? What did you do to foster that? Do you have a family verse or verses?