Ok, so I am a little behind, but last Friday, Alena turned FIVE! She is an amazing little girl that we were all excited to celebrate. Let me take you back a bit though...long before Alena was born we were given a gift....
Long ago, in a church far away, sitting in a big room, with not too many people, Ben and I were taught a simple but powerful lesson: We could hear the voice of God. Simple: Read John 10, it says we are His sheep and we can know His voice. Powerful: The Creator of the Universe speaks to me! This can be used for many different things, but one of the ways it has absolutely blessed Ben and I has been in raising our children. HIS heart (meaning God's) is consistently more compassionate, kind, loving, and gracious than mine...so it advantageous to hear His voice when it comes to kids who push me to my mental, physical, and emotional limits. He has this way of speaking to me about them that softens me and helps me see them in the light of glory. Did I mention this is helpful on difficult days? It's actually helpful on the easy days too.
So, anyway, 5 and a half years ago when we found out we were having a girl, we prayed and asked the Creator of our child, who was this being growing inside of me? And believe or not we heard astonishing, yet simple, characteristics about our little one. Now, don't let me fool you...sometimes I doubt, I think, "Really? We heard that, but will that be what she is really like?" I am not always steadfast- thankfully, He is. But then...5 years and 1 week goes by and I frantically search for the exact piece of paper it was written on that day....and when I find it, I am overwhelmed by the power there is in hearing His voice. I will only share a few because these are Ben, mine and Alena's pearls and we won't give them ALL away to the internet...but enjoy, because God is good and faithful and He is simple and He is powerful.
* Confident Joy
I wish you could hear what her teacher says at conferences, this confirms we heard right on this one!
* Shining Star
She is sweet and kind and dramatic and soft. She is a true light.
* Passionate Friend
To her brothers, to girl friends, to me, her dedication never wanes.
Her birthday party was simple. Strawberry Shortcake met pigs-in-a-blanket with chocolate covered strawberries on the side. I was fretting because I wanted MORE for her, MORE friends, MORE presents...but she looked at me, as we were making her cupcakes, and I told her just 2 friends were coming, and she said, "Perfect, mom, I can't wait." Thank you God for the gift of hearing your voice and thank you for the gift of Alena.
I love her, forever.