I recently decided to start posting a picture of my quiet time on Instagram every day in the attempt to help create a habit of spending time with God (because let’s be honest, I’ve been neglecting it).
With the birth of my daughter, I’ve been contemplating my new self and my new role as a mother. In a lot of ways, I feel as though I’ve received a new calling upon my life: my children. As I gaze into Addison’s navy blue eyes that are discovering this beautiful world for the first time, I’m reminded about how completely dependent she is on me. With the help of my husband, we are the ones to meet all of her basic, life-giving needs. But one day, she will be grown and will go off into the world without us holding her hand or kissing her goodnight. Becoming a parent means inhearting the responsibility to prepare your children for their life ahead.
As Christian, this obviously doesn’t just mean preparing our children to move out and get a real job, but to prepare them for the purpose and plan that God has established for them. It means to live a life that exemplifies a genuine relationship with Christ.
At the Venue, Juan has been challenging us to take a critical look at ourselves so that we can grow and be the best versions of ourselves. When I did this, I was confronted with many areas that need some TLC. One of them being, my personal relationship with Christ. Needless to say, I haven’t visited the well that Jesus is present at and instead of flourishing, I’m as dry as the desert. How can I help Addison walk with Christ if I don’t do it as well?
My Bible has a little section on children and parents. In it, it gives a list of steps to lead their children into lives of godliness through a personal relationship with Christ. The first one being dedicating your children at the beginning of their lives. I’ll be honest with you and say that until this day, I never understood what the hype was. What did it really matter?
It gave a verse to go along with it:
After I read that verse, I felt compelled to read the entire first chapter of 1 Samuel. This chapter isn’t just about Samuel and his conception but about the woman who birthed him: Hannah. There’s one quality about her that really stuck out to me about her. In verse 15, Eli, the priest, accuses of her of being drunk because her mouth was moving but no sound was coming out and she replies, “I was pouring out my soul to the Lord.” I’m not a Bible scholar by any means, but the word pouring really stuck out to me. When I looked it up through Bible Hub, I was brought to its Hebrew root which is shaphak which means to pour out (duh). But one of the NASB translations was “gushed.”
How beautiful! When I think of Hannah sitting at the alter gushing her soul out to God, I think of a woman who is being transparent and vulnerable. And from my many years attending church, I know that when people break down the barriers between them & God and are just raw with Him, that’s when He chooses to work miracles.
Here’s a woman who has a loving husband but has to share him (HECK NO). If that’s not bad enough, she can’t have children. And to top it all off, his other wife purposely provokes Hannah to the point of tears. So there Hannah is in the temple gushing her heart and soul to God. Begging and pleading with Him for the comfort and blessing of a son.
And wouldn’t you know know it, when Hannah and her husband went back to the temple and were worshiping, the Lord remembered her and blessed her with Samuel, the man who becomes a strong spiritual leader of Israel and guides Israel through their transition of being ruled by the judges, to being ruled by a king.
Reading about Hannah deeply impressed upon my heart. I desire the relationship she had with God. Even in her time of agony, she was faithful. She poured herself out and worshiped Him even though the deepest desires of her heart hadn’t been met. I pray that I would grow to have such a beautiful relationship. And I pray that as Addison grows, she will witness it. I pray that each day she would grow closer to God and discover His neverending beauty and that she would live fearlessly. And I pray that each word that flows from her mouth would be Spirit-filled and each life she encountered would be changed for Christ.
I don’t know what God has in store for me anymore. I always wanted to do ministry work with my life and I still think longingly to my past. But in my hands I have a beautiful baby who’s has a whole life is ahead of her. I’m believing that her reach will be further than mine. And I believe that she will reach more lives for Christ and disciple more people than I ever could.
Addison Rose Soroka will be a game changer and I hope that one day when she thinks back to me, she will think of a woman who poured herself out to the Lord.