nnikah is telling everyone she can about this fact. She has been asking a lot of questions over the past few months and I have overheard many a deep spiritual discussions while J is putting her to bed like “How can God be in heaven but still hear me?” “Why can’t I see Jesus?” “How does He know when I pray?” It is pretty amazing that she is really processing this stuff in her four year old heart and mind. Of course right now, J and I are the authorities in her life. I am overwhelmed when I think about how much she trusts us, how much she needs us but I also know how good He is and how much He has given us to share with her. I also know for certain there will be many days she will test us, distance from us, disobey us and that too is part of her path. (memo to self) I need to trust my Father with all of that too. She prays and sees answers and she believes and she wants to follow Jesus. That is amazing.
We have been reading this Bible storybook
to her every night and I must say I am usually not a fan of Children’s story books that make Jonah getting swallowed by a fish seem like a fun adventure or leaves out the carnage brought by God and only focuses on Noah and his boat-o-fun animal friends. And do not even get me started about everyone always being white in all the pictures….I digress. But I must say we love this version and have enjoyed reading it together. It asks questions, it allows some stories to be sad because, well, they are, and points to God’s BIG plan from the beginning.
So if you ask her these days “how many birthdays do you have?” she will susinctly report two. Ask why and you will hear something like….
“because once I was in my Mama’s tummy and then I came out of my Mama’s vagina and that was one birthday and then when I growed up I choose to follow Jesus and I had another birthday”
First, can I just say I love how her answer always somehow includes mention of my girly bits. Second, I adore that she is already “growed up.” It was July 7th and we will always remember that because it was our 10 year anniversary. A really special day. The day Annikah Joy chose to follow Jesus.
God regenerates and changes hearts one by one and although we see faith as important in our family and central to how we can love and forgive and thrive we knew that our children must choose for themselves who they will follow. Anni has faith like a child and although the world may discount that Jesus valued it highly. She prays and sees answers and she believes and she has begun a journey that while difficult is amazingly rich in blessing. She wants a relationship with the God of the universe and her creator.
After her tearful prayer and lots of talking we took some pictures (at Jason’s request because he always wished he had a picture of that moment in his life) and then I suggested we plan a birthday party of sorts since she loves the story of Nicodemus being born a second time.
The party was an after thought to make sure no bribing was involved of course but once it was suggested that we mark this special occasion with a little family celebration she was pumped!
first there were decorations……pictures of Jesus healing a man… “because he rubbed some dirt in his face,” smiling hearts “becuase Jesus loves hearts”, and pink houses “because I like pink and purple houses” and “our family because we love God.”
And what is a party without cake?… a pink cake because “Jesus loves pink cake” apparently.
It is an amazing privilege to watch our precious little girl choose for herself this day who she will follow. We are celebrating new life!!