This past Sunday was a day filled with tradition, family, spiritual significance, and overwhelming joy.
My heart filled to overflowing in seeing my Josi perform with the "Extreme Worship" kids choir at our church. Josi has always loved music but because of the bright lights and loud volume in "big" church, she's never wanted to participate before. We've come a long way in many areas but this one was HUGE because I know her presence up on stage was a blessing to so many people.
As is typical of Josi, she's looking around making sure that we're all in our seats and ready to go.
The choir only had two practices and yet Josi knew ALL of the words and ALL of the hand motions that went along with them. I could hardly join in as I was overcome with such emotion in seeing my big girl using one of the many gifts God has given her, for His Glory!
She is completely in her element when there is music combined with hand motions. I think she learned all the hand motions to "The Wheels on the Bus" before she was out of her crib. :)
My sister Stephanie, who photographed Josi and the upcoming dedication service, caught me sharing a tender moment with Nadia as her big sister blessed the socks off of me up front.
I believe there is not much more "holier" in God's eyes than to see a child's hands raised in an act of pure praise and worship. Be still my Mother's heart and know that He is indeed God.
Proud Grandparents look on:
My Dad, Mom, and nephew Adam
Jim's Mom is also enjoying seeing her granddaughter on stage.
Then it was time to dedicate our newest child...Nadia Irina Ferguson.
We took our place on stage with 6 other families and the congregation repeated their vows to pray for us and for Nadia.
We also stated our vows to raise Nadia in a Christian home where we will teach her about her Heavenly Father and guide her according to biblical principles.
Our children's pastor prayed for each family to have the strength to fulfill their vows.
It was a very quick moment but filled with much significance for Jim and I as we take our jobs as parents very seriously. We fall short of parenting in patience in grace many times, so I'm eternally thankful that my Heavenly Father extends His patience and grace to us so we can start again.
Nadia was wearing a beautiful hand-smocked dress made by none other than my Mom--or Nonna as all the grandkids know her. It was not lost on me that just 4 short months ago Nadia had one outfit hanging in her locker at the orphanage that wasn't even "picked out" for just her, let alone lovingly hand-made by a special person in her life.
When my niece saw this photo she remarked that it looks like Nadia is smiling up at heaven. I believe God is smiling right back down at her based on that radiant look on her face.
A tradition in our family is for the great grand-kids to wear a hand-knit gown made by my Nana D who is also smiling down on Nadia from heaven. I miss my Nana and wish she could be here along with my Nana Paul to see this newest addition to our family.
Nana D also made the blanket Nadia's standing on as well as booties and a hat (there was no way those were staying on little Miss Grabby-hands so I didn't even try).
Transitioning to life with 4 kids, homeschooling, and having 2 with special needs has not been easy and I intend to write an honest post about that once I can gather all of my thoughts...but when I reflect on this past Sunday and ALL of the many blessings God has given me, I can't help but smile...
Who couldn't smile when given the privilege of seeing this face every morning!