Bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
This year Mother's Day was so special and so hard all at the same time. We dedicated Levi at church on Sunday. Two years ago we were standing on that same stage dedicating Cora. Man, that was a scary thing to do again. It shouldn't have been scary. Of course we wouldn't want our Levi's life in anyone else's hands but the Lord's. He loves Levi even more than we do. But as we have had to trust God with loosing our first sweet baby, I think we are tempted to just want to partially trust God with Levi. We are tempted to say, "Ok, God...we trust you with Levi's life as long as you promise to keep him safe and healthy." So, to stand on that stage and publicly dedicate Levi's life to the Lord, choosing to fully trust God and to raise Levi with open hands, was hard. Why do we as parents try to hang on when we know that our children are much better off in the Lord's hands than in our own? Why do we have a hard time trusting when we know our Heavenly Father loves us deeply and passionately?
And standing next to all the other families dedicating their children...that was tough. We were the only ones up there with one child. All the other babies had their siblings standing up there with them. That was hard for me. I struggled to hold the tears. I wish little Cora could have been standing beside her brother on his special day. I wish we could have been together as a family. Someday...
This is what we wrote about Levi for the dedication...
Levi means “joined”. We love the meaning of this name as our family has felt everything but joined since Levi’s big sister Cora went to heaven. We know that even though our family will never seem complete here on earth we will one day be “joined” together again because of the hope we have in Christ.
Jerald is after Joel's dad, Jerry. Jerry is one of the kindest, God-fearing men we know. He is a hard worker, is dedicated to serving the Lord in both his occupation and his every day life, and has such a servant's heart. Anyone who knows Joel's dad would understand why we would also want our son to have this name.
We chose Malachi 2:4-6 for Levi. We are praying that Levi would grow up to be a man who walks in uprightness and who stands in awe of our Lord’s name.
Levi is such a blessing to us. He is a sweet little boy and has brought many smiles and lots of laughter to our house again. We realize more than ever that every day with Levi is a gift. Today, as we dedicate Levi to the Lord, we are praying that we would be faithful to raise him with open hands.
Levi wasn't too excited about our Mother's Day photo together. The poor little guy was so tired and he didn't really want anything to do with pictures.
I kept forgetting to get a family picture. I knew we should have taken one at church, but I thought, "Oh well, we'll just take one later". By the end of the afternoon, Levi was so grouchy and Joel had already changed his clothes. This was the best we could do! Thanks for the pictures Ian!