When you were born just a week and a half ago and I got to hold you for the first time, one of the immediate thoughts in my mind was this: How could anyone hold a perfect, innocent newborn and not sense God?
I know you were “fearfully and wonderfully made” by God. You are not simply the aftermath of a cosmic explosion billions of years ago.
I know God wove you in Mommy’s womb. You are more than just science.
You were created, beyond just your parents.
To be “fearfully made” means that we respectfully recognize God’s achievement and creativity in your existence.
As your parents, we could never simply say, “This is our child. We brought her into this world.” It will always be much more complex than that, because God knew you before He ever wove you in the womb.
We recognize that children are a heritage from the Lord. You being here in this world is so much more epic than a Mommy and a Daddy deciding to have a baby.
Now, imagine this. You were born into a family where this all information will be intertwined into our family’s lifestyle and culture.
Knowing that this same God who knew you before Mommy and I ever did, it’s only logical that our family is to serve Him through our lives, something we can’t do without loving our neighbors as ourselves.
And how can we love our neighbors, or even ourselves, if we can’t love our own family?
What that means to me as your Daddy is that I’ve got a particular responsibility to teach you to love. Of course, there is no better way to teach you to love than to demonstrate love to you and in front of you, along with Mommy and your brother.
Struggle will always be present in life, but it’s a matter of how we choose to deal with it as it comes. We as a family can make a daily choice to be more than conquerors, though God’s love.
So I will lead our family to choose to be victors, instead of victims. We will make a choice to do what is often unnatural to the human experience, in attempt to love each other and to love God.
Here’s a little cheat sheet I crafted to remind me:
Victors versus Victims
Victor: compliments others
Victim: criticizes others
Victor: embraces change
Victim: fears change
Victor: forgives others
Victim: holds grudges
Victor: always learning
Victim: thinks they know everything
Victor: accepts responsibility for their failures
Victim: blames others for their failures
Victor: has a sense of gratitude
Victim: has a sense of entitlement
Victor: sets goals and develops plans
Victim: never sets goals
We will be conscious of these things. We will be conscious of our responsibility to love and serve the God who fearfully and wonderfully made us.
This is the family you were born into…
We are a family where we will choose for love to be patient and kind, where it does not envy or boast, where it is not proud or rude or self-seeking or easily angered.
We will choose a love that keeps no record of wrongs. We will choose a love that not to delight in evil.
We will choose a love that always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.
Because if we choose this kind of love, we will choose a love that never fails.