This weekend, my baby, my mini-me, my funny little pig-tailed girl who loves singing, dancing, and Elmo, is turning two. With three children of our own and close to 30 nieces and nephews, it seems that someone is always having a birthday. Birthdays are a big deal here, and not because we have a party with all the hoopla, because they are a true celebration of life for the birthday girl or boy. It’s fun to see how each of our children gets so excited when the other has a birthday. The birthday build-up literally starts building months beforehand. I love seeing how our children love each other and others outside of our family by being genuinely excited for people other than themselves. If you have small kids or big kids…well, quite frankly, if you’re human you know sometimes we have to make a conscious effort to look beyond our own comfort and happiness. It’s an awesome time for togetherness with family and friends and, of course, the pinnacle of excitement for the birthday child. To me, as their mom, birthdays take on a whole new meaning.
- Each of my children’s birthdays is like a thanksgiving feast in my heart – Thank you Lord for giving me this child. Thank you for giving him or her another year of life.
- It’s a time to reflect on their lives from the beginning – from their birth story, to each “first,” their funny personalities and each memory contained within.
- It’s time to recognize the blessings they bring. Each child is different and brings many different lovable qualities. His or her birthday is a special reminder of how God made each person and child so unique, yet in His own image. It’s so much fun to see how each child is developing his or her spiritual gifts and how those gifts manifest with each year that passes.
- It’s a time to consider my job as their mom. Am I not only encouraging godliness in their lives as little children and the things little children do, but raising them to be lovers of the Lord for all their lives? Am I praying for them and with them enough? Am I guiding my boy’s heart to be strong, courageous, brave, and a provider for his future family? Am I showing my girls how to be loving, gracious, modest, and diligent workers at home?
Beyond cake, ice cream, and presents – as my little ones blow out their candles making the wishes of a small child’s heart, I pray that each of our children would grow to love the Lord with all their hearts, follow Him with each passing year of their lives, and that their lives would show evidence of his glory through their little hearts and that those virtues would be their prayer for others as well.