Sunday, January 30, 2011

to benjamin on his 1st birthday

My baby boy is one today, and I’m putting off all the things that are pulling me in a thousand different directions to just sit down, quiet myself, and be thankful for this beautiful blessing God has given me, my Benjamin. And he is beautiful. It’s not just that handsome face of his; it’s his personality, his manner, his slow grin, his happy eyes. I adore this boy, and I want him to know it. So, here’s my open letter to Benjamin Cole on his 1st birthday:

Sweet Benjamin,

Happy birthday, love. You have been with me now for one year—just one year—and yet, I can barely remember my life before you. Isn’t that funny? I lived 31 years before laying eyes on you, and now I can’t imagine lasting even one day without you.

You are so loved, Benjamin, and you love so sweetly in return. Your sweet smiles and tender hugs—they make the worst of days the best. You love to play and to rough house…to be treated just like the big kids. But don’t be in too much of hurry, sweet boy. Take your time in growing up. Let your mommy love on you, fuss over you, sugar and hug you. All too soon you’ll be a big boy running out my front door.

I pray for you each night, baby. I pray that God will grow you into a man of integrity and godly character. I pray that you will love Him authentically and radically—that you will know Him. And I pray for grace—not only for you, but also for me, because I know I will let you down. I won’t always be the mom you need me to be. I will sometimes let selfishness get in the way of loving you the way you ought to be loved. I will sometimes let a bad day determine the way I talk to you. I will sometimes neglect the eternal things for the sake of the temporal. I won’t always understand what you need, and I will inevitably embarrass you from time to time. It breaks my heart to think of it, but I will disappoint you.

So when those times come, I pray that God will cover my shortcomings with His steadfast grace. I pray that He will love you and speak to you with understanding, compassion, and truth. I pray that He will open your eyes to the eternal. I pray that He will encourage you and build you up. And He will, love. You just watch.

You are a blessing, Benjamin—God’s very special gift to me—and I’m so, so very thankful for you. You bring even more joy and more laughter into this home of ours. Happy birthday, sweet boy. I love you forever.


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