Mango Baby

23 Weeks today!!  Isn't God amazing?  I am loving this phase of pregnancy, it is so fun to see how much I'm growing and to be feeling Ava all the time now.  She is quite the acrobat these days!  All of the sudden, I am very aware of when she is awake and when she is asleep.  Sometimes I swear she must be doing flips in there because she's kicking me all over my stomach :)  Travis has been able to feel her move twice, which was very sweet for him.  He was hoping that would be his Christmas present, but I was sure he wouldn't have to wait that long.  She's just been so active these last few days and I'm certain she already loves her daddy!  We read today that she is over a pound, about 11 inches long and the size of a large mango.  I'd like to add that she's also as sweet as a mango :)  I'm speaking that prophetically!  

Travis was such a big help to me this weekend and we were able to finish every single gift on our shopping list!!  I'm so proud of myself for being this organized, this soon.  It really makes my week more fun to not have that pressure weighing on me.  Now we can enjoy these days leading up to Christmas, instead of being stressed!

Today Travis and I had such a sweet, unexpected blessing waiting for us.  After Church, we found a gift in front of Trav's office, with an anonymous note and 3 VERY generous gift cards.  It was such an incredible gift and everything in me wishes I could know who it was from so that I could thank them.  But, I know that through their generosity we were so blessed and I'm praying that the Lord will bless them greatly in return.  We are so thankful for the people in our lives who are such an encouragement to us.  What a wonderful treat that was to us!

Today I was just mulling that over and thinking about how we'll teach Ava to appreciate unexpected gifts and how we'll demonstrate giving with a generous heart to her.  There are times when fear grips me about being a parent.  When I put such pressure on myself to not "screw it up" and to get everything right with our first baby.  But I'm reminded quickly of how short I will fall when I make perfection my standard.  Today we talked about grace and legalism in Church and our Pastor walked us through truth from scripture to help correct our tainted thinking.  He reminded us that we don't live performance based lives as Christians.  Nothing we do can make God love us more and nothing we do can make Him love us less.  Our performance has nothing to do with His gift of grace.  Not only does that bring freedom from guilt, but it reminded me that perfection is not a goal!  It also freed me from some of the fear that we're going to make a mistake and "mess up" Ava :)  Mistakes are inevitable, but we don't face condemnation when we are in Christ.  Grace doesn't give us a license to do what we want, but it does allow us to enjoy an honest relationship with the Lord, regardless of how wrong or right we are in our actions.  I find great rest in that truth, in knowing that we'll do our best to seek the Lord as we raise Ava and to do what we believe the Lord wants us to do with her.  We don't have to buy in to any programs or philosophies, we just have to go before the Lord everyday and seek his wisdom in the practical, everyday things.  He'll help us in the big things when we're faithful in the small things.  What a relief :)  All the books and the articles and the experts are full of things to say, but if we listen to nothing but the truth of God's word, we will always find wisdom.  

Lots to ponder on a Sunday night, but welcome to the hardest job on earth, right?  Being a parent.   

Have a wonderful week before Christmas!  Back to addressing my Christmas cards...

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Something I've learned: The moment I start to trust in my own good works (reading the Bible to Kaelem, telling him about Jesus, and even praying for him) to make sure he turns out right is the moment I sin. Instead, I'm to do the good works, but trust Jesus for the outcome!