Where has the time gone?? Wishing my darling daughter, Grace, a very happy and wonderFULL 6th birthday! I'm reminded today of what a treasure she is and a marvelous gift from God. I'm also reminded of the mandate and responsibility I own to raise her to know/love God, herself and others. What a mandate! But, I don't have to do it alone. God has partnered with me to accomplish this massive undertaking. It started before she was born, built on a foundation recognizing Him as her creator and a beat in His heart before she was even conceived. Here is the prayer we prayed over her during her actual birth and first moments of life:
With the combination of waterworks & my handwriting, it's a wonder how my sister, Tracy, even made it through the prayer- some parts are just plain hard to read.
Father, thank you for your presence; for being here to welcome baby Grace into the world. Your word says that you are her creator. She was in your care even before she was born this day. Long before she was conceived in my womb, she was conceived in Your mind and in Your heart. You planned her though I did not. You thought of Grace first. It is not fate, nor chance, nor luck, nor coincidence that she is breathing this very moment. She is alive because You wanted to create her.
Lord, You said, "I will fulfill My purpose for Grace." God, you prescribed every single detail of Grace's body. You deliberately chose her race, color of skin, her hair and every other feature. You custom made her body just the way you wanted. You've determined the natural talents she will possess and the uniqueness of her personality. Your word says that You know her inside and out. You know every bone in her body. You know exactly how she was made, bit by bit; how she was sculpted from nothing into something.
God, because You made Grace for a reason, You also decided when she would be born and how long she will live. You've planned the days of her life in advance; choosing the exact time of her birth and even her death. Your word says You saw Grace before she was born and scheduled each day of her life even before she took this first breath. Every day was recorded in Your book.
God, you also planned where Grace would be born and where she will live for Your purpose. Her race and nationality are no accident. You left no detail to chance. You are not surprised. In fact, you expected it. You have welcomed her into this world. You are her Father to love, care for and provide for her. Cover her with your love. Give her a supernatural awareness of your presence. Call her. Prepare her. Give her health and instill an ability to trust You in all things. Guide her. Fashion her with spiritual blessings. Just as the handmaiden Hannah lent her child for Your service, so I offer Grace to You, Lord. You are her salvation.
Treasured friend, Sarah, and my fun niece, Merideth, read the following scriptures & sang songs while Grace was being born & getting her first bath:
Psalm 139:14-15 Oh, yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother's womb. I thak you , High God--breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration--what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; you know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepard before I'd even lived one day.
Psalm 22:9-10 And to think, you were my midwife at my birth, setting me at my mother's breast! When I left the womb You cradled me; since the moment of birth you've been my God.
Psalm 71:6 I've hung on you from the day of my birth. You took me from the cradle; I'll never run out of praise.
Isaiah 49:1, 5 Listen far flung islands, pay attention, faraway people: God put me to work from the day I was born. The moment I entered the world He named me. He said to me, "You're me dear servant, Israel (Grace), through whom I'll shine."
Luke 1:41 You are blessed and the babe in your womb also blessed.
Matt 19:14 One day children were brought to Jesus in the hope that he would lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples shooed them off. But Jesus intervened: "Let the children alone, don't prevent them from coming to me. God's kingdom is made up of people like these."
Eph 1:3-6 How blessed is God! And what a blessing He is! He's the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in Him. Long before He laid down earth's foundations, He had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of His love, to be made whole and holy by His love. Long, long ago He decided to adopt us into His family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure He took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of His lavish gift-giving by the hand of His beloved Son.
I Samual 1:28 I prayed for this child, and God gave me what I asked for. And now I have dedicated him (her) to God. She's dedicated to God for life." Then and there, they worshiped God.