“For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition that I made to him. Therefore I have lent him to the Lord. As long as he lives, he is lent to the Lord.”
-1 Samuel 1:27, 28b
The above verse is one that I prayed and prayed before becoming pregnant with Ella. I prayed that if the Lord would grant my petition asking for a child, that I would do as Hannah and give my child to the Lord. Then, after finding out I was pregnant and the anxiety of the entire pregnancy, I pleaded these verses.
And, now she’s here. She’s strong-willed like her mother. Yet, loving like her daddy. And, y’all she is the most beautiful baby I have ever laid eyes on. Sometimes, I just stare at her and wonder how in the world a baby so pretty came to be mine. Her laugh is ridiculously contagious. As soon as she starts, I can’t stop, which in turn, makes her laugh harder. I couldn’t ask for a greater blessing than Ella.
But, then comes the pesky second part of that Scripture. The whole, giving her over completely to the Lord. That seemed much easier when I prayed it before she actually got here. I know all of the spiritual answers and agree with them, but that doesn’t make it any less difficult.
If you want to know the truth, a little window into the last 8 months, my struggle with the Lord has not been an easy one in this area. I know what it’s like to hand your baby over to the Lord and then things end in the way you never expected. I also know that doesn’t hold a candle to the pain of parents that, for whatever reason, the Lord called their child home far sooner than they ever planned.
And, here I am, clinging to my baby scared that the Lord may not know what’s best. What if I miss a step when going up or down the stairs with Ella and something bad happens? What if I lay her down for her nap and she doesn’t wake up? What if she chokes while eating? What if I’m driving on the highway and something starts to happen in the backseat and I can’t get to her in time? What if…?
Unfortunately, I can give you lots of different stories from my life where I trusted the Lord and things didn’t turn out how I planned for them. And, some days I truly struggle in handing over my baby to the Lord. Does He really know best? Do I really, truly believe that God is good?
Tonight, I cried my eyes out to John and explained how sometimes I feel that I am just waiting for something to go bad with Ella. We discussed a lot of it and traced back the roots of the fears. Half of it being the loss of our sweet first baby. But, after we talked some, we decided to sneak into Ella’s room to watch her sleep (one of my favorite things!).
Well, she heard us (oops!) and awoke, crying. I picked her up and held her close. She instantly fell back asleep. Then, as I was swaying her, I looked up and noticed the above verse that is painted above her crib. I instantly got teary and felt the Lord whisper, “When are you really going to lend her to me?”
Don’t get me wrong, the Lord gave mother’s an instinct to protect their children. It’s amazing how He crafts that within a woman that has a baby. It’s okay to be careful and to protect my little one. But, there is also the point where if it’s done out of fear and worry, that is in no way trusting the Lord with my baby.
I am learning what it means to hand over my baby.
Every. Single. Stinkin’. Day.
I am ridiculously, unbelievably, immeasurably, beyond blessed to be given the gift of Ella. And, I will spend the rest of my life handing her over to the Lord and praising Him for letting me care for His creation in her!