There are some things I deeply desire for my children to know. Things that are most important to me and I pray that I teach them well. I pray that they don't just grasp them, but that they practice them even better than I do.
Most importantly, I want you to know that God is good! All.The.Time. No matter what circumstances may come your way He is good! Even when someone takes your toy, your best friend betrays you, you think we're mean, your spouse makes you cry, or you experience some deep loss He is still good. Period.
You have brought us so much joy. Even when nights were sleepless and the days were consumed by loud screams, I found joy in your eyes or a momentary smile. You will not experience this until you have your own children. Yes, your daddy and I have prayed for your future spouse and children since the day we found out we were pregnant with you.
A Godly spouse is one of the most valuable gifts God can give you. Do not settle. I repeat, do not settle. When you think that guy hung the moon, he didn't. His precious "quirks" will one day become his most irritating traits, so lean on God and wait for His best. I promise you will thank me for this :). Pray fervently for your spouse and children, even before you know their names.
Prayer is powerful! Do it! Daily, all the time, without ceasing. The God of the Universe desires an intimate relationship with YOU! You will experience the power of fervent prayer when you really want something. Your daddy and I did not feel this until we were pleading for you, and it is awe-inspiring.
There is a peace that exists in the state of complete surrender. Experience it. He hears your prayers and answers them. His answers may not always be the ones you initially desired, but they are what is best for you, and in the end you will thank Him. On your knees, you will thank Him.
Pray for specifics. Like I said, God is good, and He already knows your heart. Say these desires out loud, write them down, let others know. When He answers them, He gets the glory, and you get increased faith.
Listen to others. Actually listen. Don't nod your head in agreement, but hear their needs, wants, passions, and dreams. Ask them about those things later.
Be a good friend. Do not gossip, slander, be envious or jealous. Be the friend you want to have. Even when you are burning and itching to tell the latest information, tame your tongue. You will be trusted.
Get to know people who are different than you. Different races, religions, social groups, economic backgrounds, and yes, even political party. When you learn to love others unconditionally who have no way of ever paying you back, you get a taste of the cross and Christ's sacrifice. When you can see beyond color, class or creed you have learned to see people through the eyes of Christ. This is beautiful.
Enjoy life. Don't take yourself too seriously. Laugh loud and often. Your Iggy is a great example of this.
Be secure in the person God made you. He is creative and designed you exactly the way He desired. If you are confident and secure others will be attracted to that. It will also help you in every other area I have mentioned. Remember, you are God's child. His heart breaks with yours and He rejoices with you. When you criticize yourself, you are criticizing His creation. Thank Him.
Be obedient. Not just to your dad and I. Get to know the voice of God. He will call you on some of the most amazing journeys you could ever imagine.
Remember to see the adventure in everything and enjoy the uncertainties. That is when He is there. When He is whispering, "Do you trust me?" Be faithful in the small things and He will bless you.
Life is not about the material things that you have, the vacations you get to take, the people you know or the schools you attend. It is about complete, uninhibited, totally insane, surrender to the One True God. If you experience and truly depend on Him everyday you get it. You get what your dad and I want you to have. You get our deepest desire for you. You get that He is the Lord and Savior of your life. You get His love for you. And you get that no matter what journeys, uncertainties, sacrifices, and uncomfortable things we take you on, walk you through or trust you to understand, it was all for His glory. It was all because we wholeheartedly surrender to Him not just for us, but for you. For the legacy of our family. Because we do not want to be status quo. Because we want to experience the craziness of a life abandoned to Him. It is scary yet peaceful; powerful yet calm; joyous yet heartbreaking; humbling yet boastful. And with His help, and only with His help, it is possible.
Adopt it as your own...