Hannah, a barren woman of the Bible, petitioned the Lord for a son and when she received the blessing of her child, she said,
"As surely as you live, my lord, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the LORD. I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD." And he worshiped the LORD there. 1 Samuel 1:26-28
In our church we practice baby dedication instead of infant baptism. This past Sunday, Jimmy and I testified of God's goodness in the birth of Grace Louise and were happy to publicly dedicate her back to the Lord. During the testimony, Jimmy shared that in his first prayer over her life, he confessed to God that she was His, only ours for the blessing and responsibility of raising. We realize that our job is to raise her up in the way she should go, teaching her to know and love Jesus.
This particular Sunday was also our church's "Gifts for Jesus" service where talents of singing, poetry, and even ping pong ball eating (never mind) were shared to bring honor and glory to God. At such a joyous time as this in my life, I feel like I'm MAJORLY on the receiving end... my gifts to God pale in comparison to the abundant blessings He's bestowed- (I believe this is called grace!) Aside from the very obvious gift of my beautiful child, God has given me the gift of knowing Him more. I shared with the congregation that the experience of motherhood has given me a cherished glimpse into the kind of love which God has for me. I look at Grace Louise and often cry tears of joy, overwhelmed by the love that I feel for her. And to think that God's love for His children is even greater. This I cannot fully understand. But I am drawn closer to Him in a father/daughter kind of way, knowing that he looks upon me with unconditional love and longs to hold me close to Him. One of my new favorite songs that so beautifully describes this love is at the top of my playlist. Enjoy!