To my beautiful Madeline on your 10th Birthday,
Today you are ten years old and I praise your father in heaven who has given you a beautiful heart, mind and soul. I know there are many days you doubt yourself, your worth and God. I want you to know sweet daughter on the days you doubt yourself that God, daddy and I will be here to hold you, speak truth to you and carry you when you are not strong enough to walk.
The world is a confusing place, it hurts and it is more often hard than it is easy. I have watched you wrestle with trusting not only daddy and I, but to trust God. I know daddy and I have created fear and distrust in you, for this we are deeply sorry and we ask your forgiveness and at the same time we want to thank you for the huge amounts of love you continue to give us. Thank you for trusting us with your heart. I treasure and do not take for granted when you come to me to ask me tough questions about life. I cherish these talks and I cherish my time with you.
I want you to know Maddie God is big enough to handle your questioning, he is big enough to handle the times when you are wrestling to trust him. He knows how confusing it is to live in a world corrupted by sin. Cry out to him, yell at him and let him hold you and dry your tears. In the times when life is dark and you cannot find your way it will be tempting to run from him and run to something that fixes the pain faster or so it will seem. You may have to experience for yourself, but running from Abba is not faster, it only creates more pain. Remember the times I have told you do the hard thing now to make it easier down the road. This is one of those times. When feeling the raw, awful pain hurts. When you would rather run away than face it, yet, if you face it now the pain will be less later. Be brave my sweet tower of favor, be brave and feel the ugly pain and let Jesus turn it into gladness and beauty.
I have seen you grow as you challenge the Lord with your questions. I have seen you ask him for big things and I have seen him lavish gifts on you. He does this because he is a good, good father who loves you. Remember in the times when it feels like you can’t hear him or see him, but you see and feel the world fall down around you. Even when the world falls on you, he is still a good, good father. Remember two years ago when we began praying for a dog for you? We continued to pray, watch and wait with expectation. During those two years while we were praying, God was molding and shaping the dog we would need. A dog who would dry our tears, pull us out of sadness and challenge us to get out and play. Remember the day God brought Skye into our lives and remember the times when you were sure you would never get the dog of your dreams. Then God brought you a black and white husky to call your own. She would fill our hearts and our home, she would be one more reason to add to the reasons we love winter.
God does not always answer in the way we want him to or when we want him to, if he did, we would not need to have faith or learn to trust. God created the animals you adore, the animals you connect with, if he feeds and takes care of them, he will also take care of you.
You are our precious, beloved daughter and we are well pleased with you. We will always be your cheerleader, we will always be a place you can call home. Our door, fridge, cupboards and hearts will always be open to you. We are proud of the young lady you are and we love you. Happy 10th Birthday, Maddie. We love you for always, like you forever, as long as we’re living our baby you’ll be. Remember no matter how mad you get at us and no matter how much you sass us, we will be here and we will always love you.
Mommy and Daddy