I am surprised by motherhood. It is both everything and nothing like I expected – which summarizes my life these past twelve-weeks: unpredictably predictable. As a first time mom with an infant, a puppy, a husband who commutes, a book to write, a business to maintain and a house on the market, I shouldn’t be surprised that I am so exhausted. I predicted that I would be. What I did not predict however was that I am not physically exhausted – I am emotionally exhausted. It’s a new type of exhaustion though, and not a negative one – it’s an exhaustion that gives me a euphoric high. You see, my exhaustion comes not from a lack of sleep but rather from a heart that has reached its capacity and then burst wide open into a state of overflow.
If you are a parent yourself I know that you know this happy exhaustion. You get it every time you look at your little one, hold them in your arms, or remember the days when you were able to.
When I look at my little Ellie my soul sings. When I breastfeed my heart melts. When she opens her mouth to form beautiful baby smiles I kiss her face all over. When she sleeps through the night my gratitude overflows and I skip through the house. When her eyes widen with wonder – and the blue of her pupils sparkle with shades of azure I cannot describe – my entire body wells up with astonishment at her beauty. When I walk hand-in-hand at night with my husband, our puppy Finnegan and the stroller, my joy freezes time.
I marvel at the miracle that is a baby. I am amazed by the emotional gift we are given as parents – it’s a new chamber of my heart that I never knew existed before.
Here are my prayers for Ellie – and what can be your prayers for your child – at this point in her short, beautiful life. At this time in her life I have decided to saturate her with prayers for a heart filled with generosity, confidence, hopefulness, happiness and peacefulness. Take these prayers for your little ones – borrow them and join me in this state of overflow:
Lord, I pray that my child’s heart will be filled with generosity all the days of her life. Let her be generous with her smiles, generous with her time, generous with her spirit, generous with her talents, generous with her hugs, generous with her words, and generous with her money.
Lord, mold the spirit of my child with unsurpassed enthusiasm for life that is contagious to those whose path crosses hers. May she see the potential of life with a profound sense of generosity.
Lord, You created my child exactly how You intended her to be. Let her always find confidence in that truth and in her identity in You. Her body will change physically every week, every month and every year of her life, let her always be confident in her skin and let her trust that You crafted her beautifully and purposefully.
Lord, I pray that my child will be grounded in a confident certainty that she is special and that she has something unique and purposeful to contribute to the world. Give her the courage to explore the gifts You have given her and boldness to pursue a life worth telling a story about.
Lord, breathe into my child an attitude of hopefulness that she might live all of her days with a spirit of certainty and confidence in Your provision and timing. Carve into her soul eyes with which see the world with an expectation for the best, that she might know with confidence that You work through all things for our good.
Lord, shelter the soul of little one, that she might find her salvation and hope in You, the One who gives us real hope and the possibility of hopefulness in life.
Lord, let my little girl sparkle with an innate joy of living. Make her smile radiant, authentic and contagious and brighten her eyes that they might always sparkle with joy, hope and happiness.
Lord, create in her heart a curiosity for new discoveries, for truth and for a love of learning that she might be able to dwell in deeper and deeper states of happiness as each stage of her life – from childhood, to adolescence, to adulthood – progresses.
Lord, protect my little one from the plight of anxiety and fear that is so well known and well lived in the world. Let her heart find its natural rhythm in peace and let anxiety be a stranger to her. Give her freedom from fear and wisdom to always turn to You, the Prince of Peace.
Lord, wrap my child in the comfort of Your arms every time she closes her eyes to sleep. Let her slumber be sweet, her dreams be beautiful and her sleep be restful. Give to her the ability to always find comfort in the arms of the ones who love her and who care for her.