Countless changes have come to our family in the past twelve months. Some quite expected and welcomed, others not so much, but through it all He continues to sustain and uphold and give only what's best and hands down the best gift ever this year? Baby Katie.
On the 19th, welcomed into the world four days shy of my own birthday, this September-niece of mine has birthed a whole new season for our family, and to say that we are over-the-moon excited to be aunties and uncles, grandma and parents would be quite the understatement.
Late September finds mami-dear and I flying out west to meet her, getting to spend two short weeks.
I hesitate to hold her at first, tiny drop of beauty that she is, sure I'll be clumsy and breathe too fast and one wisp of air might just make her disappear...but irresistible as she is before long I find myself waiting my turn with her again. And again.
Holding her in the early morning stillness while parents sleep, this little bundle of heaven, I gaze at her, want to memorize her face, want these moments to last forever...
I didn't know love so fierce was possible until I sit here and feel her breathe and watch her eyelids lightly flicker against the light of the rising sun. How I wish I could keep her from all harm and all darkness and all pain and all evil and I hope that she sleeps this peacefully and safely every day of her life. This fragile feather of a child, how she has stolen our hearts completely and irreversibly.
Life will never be the same, as sister Susan said so well.
Watching skyline outside airplane window, across country and back, I realize again the weight of our life-choices, and how other lives are shaped for better or worse by our daily decisions. As a newborn Katie is dependent on those around her for everything, and as she grows up, we are the picture of Jesus that will frame her understanding of Him. How truly weighty all we do and say is. What a responsibility. Privilege, yes. To share Jesus with others is an incredible honor...but such a huge responsibility...and more than ever I want my heart to be centered on Him so that my words and my actions might reflect that union that my heart has with His.
When my time on earth is done I want to be able to know that I let Jesus live in me, that I didn't stand in the way of others seeing Him, that I didn't think so highly of myself as to mislead others into a false understanding of who He is.
My heart rejoices that my niece is among the privileged few who are blessed with two godly parents, both determined to do all in their power to raise her in the love that they have found in Jesus. Lord willing, she will one day in heaven look back on her family and know that it was because of their example that she too loved Jesus enough to choose eternity with Him.
Back in Tennessee, I find myself whispering prayers for her throughout the day, this tender life. So young, so innocent, so moldable.
Another little life to love... Please, Jesus...May she find in You her hearts home, may we as her loved ones be not a hindrance in her walk with You, but a help.