Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A momma's prayer

"Behold,  children are a heritage from the Lord, 
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, 
So are the children of one's youth."
Psalm 127:3-4


These are my girls.  
My heritage.
My "fruit".
My reward.
My arrows.

When I learned about Jami's new link up  all about encouragement, I immediately thought of my girls and the men the Lord has brought into their lives. 
They are an answer to this momma's prayers and that encourages me.

When the Lord interrupted my life and saved me 15 years ago, my girls were small.
As I grew in His grace and knowledge, one of the first things He burdened my heart with was praying for my girls future spouses. That seemed so far off at the time but I have been obedient.


Their dad and I had certain boundaries set for our girls when it came to our version of them dating. We  firmly believe that the Lord has created someone just for them that He has chosen for them to share this life with as they serve Him.  With this conviction, we strongly disagreed with casual dating. We felt that with each "boyfriend" and break up, they take a little piece of our daughters heart with them. We taught our girls to trust the Lord and His timing and He would reveal and send their loves that He had designed for them. 

This wasn't always received with joy from our daughters...courtship as we called it. They didn't like the term too  much. They will tell you, at times they felt weird or left out and different.  And at times they rebelled...sometimes in actions ..sometimes in attitude.

Now that they are older, I think  if you asked them, they would tell you how thankful they are for those boundaries and some of the heartbreak it spared them. They have endured the 1000 piece puzzle that was required we all put together as a family with the young man so we could get to know him before we entrusted our daughter into his care for a "date".   (I'll have to share more about that at another time!)

The young men the Lord has sent into our family and our daughters lives are truly the answers to this momma's prayer.  I asked the Lord for specific things.  
  • That he would love the Lord with a passion
  • That he would be pure and honor my daughter's purity
  • That he would have a passion for God's Word and live his life according to its standards.
  • That he would be the leader in my daughter's home after they were married.
  • That he would serve the Lord in ministry, whether that be as a vocation or lay person.






Christopher was the first to ring the doorbell with a puzzle.


Elizabeth was 15 and not allowed to ride anywhere alone in a car with a boy.
Chris felt like she was worth the wait.
They were married 4 years later.
He is a full time student minister,  has mad skills in just about everything
and I love him like I gave birth to him myself. 



Marcus was the next one to fall in love with a Holden sister.


He brought the puzzle over when Lydia was 17 and we had quite a blast putting it together....they were ready to have their first official outing that wasn't with a group and they knew they had to put the puzzle together first. I will say... they were diligent. A few months later and many conversations and questions with Marcus  from me and her daddy, they completed the puzzle and went on their first date!
Lydia is 20 now and eagerly awaiting a proposal.
I'm in no hurry but she fears she may become an "old maid" soon. lol
We love Marcus. He's a full time student minister, a master of any instrument..(I mean this boy has skills like crazy), puts up with me constantly asking him to serenade me, he is a huge super-hero nerd and that is kinda  rubbing off on me.
We will be delighted when the Lord unites these two...in His timing.




Then last but certainly not least, there was Blake.  This really tall guy with super big feet and a stomach that has no bottom who fell in love with our baby and showed up at our door holding a puzzle.


Blake has a heart for the Lord, he's a preacher of the Word in the pulpit and with his life. My hubs has put him on the spot on several occasions to preach at our church and he never hesitates...he has always had a word in season and out of season.  He's an amazing ball player,  has a line from "Nacho Libre" for just about any life situation and really loves to eat.
I look forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for his future.













This week as we have all been together at the beach, 24 hours a day, all three girls and their guys,  I have been overwhelmingly encouraged by the realization of the rewards of persevering prayer. 

Hearing their conversations when they are not even aware I'm listening... talking about ministry and the things that they are excited about...things that are Christ centered....
 well, lets just say this momma's heart is overflowing.
It hasn't been a perfect journey by far and we are so not perfect parents.  
My girls have messed up.. and me and their dad have messed up too... much more than the things we've done right... but God has honored our prayers and used every mistake along the way all for His glory.
I used to think we were actually great parents but God stripped me from that pride and revealed to me it is all by His grace.








Seeing God's grace at work in the lives of these six people encourages me.

To be encouraged by other ladies go check out Jami's sweet blog
Call Me Blessed 
and to read about "God things" going on in our families check out Christina's sweet blog.
treeofolive
Stephanie :)









14 comments:

  1. I love you.
    I love your mumma heart.
    And I LOVE that we're in each others worlds.
    Im learnin many a thing from you Steph!
    xxx

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  2. What an awesome post! And such an encouragment to me. I came across a prayer list from last year & the top two things were spouses of my very young children. I have not been as committed as to be praying for their spouses, but coming across THIS post & my old prayer list my commitment has been re-established. Thanks for that list, I will be using that ;) Beautiful family!!

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  3. What a lovely family and sweet words.

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  4. You are such an awesome mom. Your girls are blessed.

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  5. that made me tear up! Oh my goodness, what a beautiful family you have and the puzzle idea...absolutely priceless!

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  6. What a sweet family... I'm intrigued by the puzzle thing

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  7. This post literally brought tears to my eyes. You are so BLESSED!!! The first thing I thought of when I started reading the post was, "Man her girls are gorgeous!" Your girls have got looks and heart, it seems. God really blessed your family! I LOVE the puzzle idea--what a unique and great way to get to know the guy who wants to take out your daughter! It's genius! That will definitely be in my family's future. I love reading your blog. You are an inspiring mama.

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  8. Oh Stephanie! I know who I am calling when my kids get to the teenage years! Will you sit on the phone with me for hours and talk me through it? This is such a picture of how faithful the Lord is! Thanks for linking up!

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  9. Love love love love love love this!!! i pray daily for my children's future spouses :) P.s. somehow I stopped following your blog?!? But I am back :) I am linking up over at my blog today...come join me, this post would be perfect!!

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  10. This was such blessing to me today! When faced with the world around us telling our children what they should be doing, we need reminders from our brothers and sisters in Christ that we are doing the right thing! Thank you for sharing!

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  11. My daughter has just turned one and we've prayed for her spouse since she was born. I love the feeling of knowing that God has a plan for her life and already knows her husband.
    Thank you for posting this. I'd love to know more about the 'puzzle' concept! Definitely post more! :) God Bless

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  12. Hi, my name is Vicki and I am a mama to three little girls. We are all done making babies at this house so now our only hope for a son is in the form of "in-law." I pray this same prayer. That these men have Jesus in their heart, that they are members of our family that we just haven't met yet. I LOVE the puzzle idea...brilliant! I love that you set your daughter's sights HIGH, to expect something different, more than what most girls do. I just love that you wrote this post...thanks.

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  13. A beautiful, beautiful post! I am stopping by through Christina's blog hop at the Olive Tree. Continued blessings for your whole family. Ever since ours were babies, my hubby and I have prayed for their future spouses...that they would love the Lord with all their heart, strong in their faith, not wishy washy, support, provide, encourage...and one night when our girls were older, during one of our family prayer times, they said to my husband... "Dad, don't forget "good-looking"
    Our older daughter has been married 2 years to a wonderful man. The Lord has answered and provided all that we have believed for, for our daughter. We have one more daughter that we stand in Faith believing for a mighty man of God and for our son we also believe for a woman of virtue who loves the Lord with all her heart.

    Blessings & Aloha!

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  14. Okay, so I'm reading through some of your older posts and WOW... this one hit home! I'm just starting out on this motherhood journey and BOY OH BOY do I have a long road ahead. I can already tell my daughter is a strong-willed one (and I just read your post on Lauren's journey) ...and this is all just encouraging me SO stinkin' much right now...I mean, I know raising children is a challenge, but it's not very often I hear moms tell their story from the other end-side of the challenge... I always hear stories from moms who are in the midst of it, or who are just beginning it... so reading all of this and soaking it in is really a blessing.
    I'm taking mental notes like crazy!!
    You're awesome!

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