Earlier this month we celebrated Brooklyn’s 7th birthday. Here’s the obligatory I can’t believe she is growing up so fast. Like nearly every other parent I wish I could slow down or turn back time, but that is not an option. Each year, leading up to her birthday, I find myself looking through pictures and reminiscing about the past. It is always so much fun to look back over her journey. It is also nice to look at pictures when I had dark hair . . . those days are long gone! I do miss her being a baby and toddler but if I’m honest, I love the big girl she has become.
Last Saturday was the big birthday party. Approximately 15 kids descended upon our home to celebrate with us. We enjoyed cake, she got some great gifts and everyone seemed to have a good time. The celebration was a success! Years ago we started a tradition of letting the birthday girl choose a restaurant for dinner. Brooklyn chose Olive Garden because she loves their frettuccinio (Fettuccine Alfredo). During dinner Shae asked Brooklyn if she had enjoyed her birthday. We fully expected her to say “yes” and then tell us all about the gifts she received or the cake and caramel apples we enjoyed, but we were wrong. She said, “Today was the best day because I got to spend time with my friends and family!"
Her response was a gift to Shae and me and a great reminder to all of us that sometimes we emphasize the wrong thing. We get so busy serving, working, hosting and/or doing life that we fail to just sit and enjoy what’s best. This made me think of the story in the bible when Jesus was at Martha’s home and Martha was so distracted and busy serving that she became frustrated with her sister, Mary, because Mary was sitting and listening to Jesus teach instead of helping her. Far too often this is me and I am so thankful that God used my 7 year old to remind me that I should never settle for good when God longs for me to have an experience like Mary.
Jonny Diaz recently released a song that touches on this same idea. The lyrics to the chorus are:
Breathe, just breathe
Come and rest at my feet
And be, just be
Chaos calls but all you really need
Is to just breathe
What a great reminder. What a great challenge. What a difficult thing to do. Here’s to trying to be a little bit more like Mary or, in my case, a little more like my sweet Brooklyn.
Martha and Mary
38 Now as they went on their way, Jesus[d] entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary.[e] Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”
#justbreathe #happybirthdaybrooklyn #crazylife
Amanda Williams is a forty-year old wife and mother of two who can still swing her pony tail and display just a tad of sass. She is also a Jesus loving girl who realizes she is nothing without the One who saved her. Amanda has two degrees specializing in serving students with special needs and is currently working in the field of Leadership Development. She is a Christian author, speaker, blogger, and publisher who loves serving beside her husband at her local place of worship, First Baptist Church of Ocala.