That is going to be the theme for the Dziagwa family in 2011. Serving Others.
I have been thinking and thinking about a theme to set for our family as we move into another glorious year with the Lord. Seems like a good one to me.
Especially after realizing our efforts to not create monsters out of our children at Christmas wanting this and that and everything else failed entirely. Their selfish natures not only emerged and reared their ugly heads, but became the theme for them over the Christmas holiday. Not a single one of them really mentioned how we are celebrating the birth of our Savior without being prompted.
NOT what I had in mind.
The beginning of our changes in Christmas began in 2009. A year we no longer wanted to get our children everything they wanted. We began to realize while it’s our heart’s desire to provide everything they want, it’s not always best for them…and doing what is best for them is a priority.
While Dan an I both grew up in the church, neither one of us had a walking, talking relationship with the Lord. It’s only been in the past few years we have acted on the promptings of God to move closer to Him. Changes in our lives-little by little-have been happening since. Our desire to draw nearer to God daily is surpassing our fleshly desires for worldly things. A life I never would have dreamed to be better than the life I used to lead. Yet that was the problem all along, I was doing the leading. Now, God has the reigns on my life and no other pleasure have I experienced is as great as serving Him. What an honor!
Christmas 2010 was no different than any other, with the exception of the number of gifts under our tree. Like 2009, there were 3 for each child—and again at the last minute, I felt myself thinking “How terrible that will look, they NEED more stocking stuffers.” I knew exactly what I was doing as I was doing it, yet I ignored promptings from the Holy Spirit and filled the stockings. Did they need another puzzle they won’t put together? Did they need body spray? really? body spray? They’re kids. Dan will enjoy it when they soon forget they have it. Wasted money.
We celebrate Christmas Eve at Dan’s parents house. His sister is always there as well-from the very first Christmas since Alexander was born the spoiling began. Things. So many things. Do they know I still have last year’s things in the very same black trash bag they went home in last year? The things they spent their money on were so pointless to my kids they forgot they even had them in the first place and never asked about them again. I know they mean well, and I know, like us they want to provide for the kids. Providing isn’t always about the things we have or the things we can buy for someone else. We can provide love, introduce them to Jesus, show them the world, teach them to love others. Teach them to serve others. So while we have the plans in place to de-commercialize Christmas even more in 2011, we don’t have to wait until Christmas to remind them of the reason for the season. Jesus, his birth and his resurrection need to be celebrated daily.
We began today with praying for an orphan. Elle. Many of you who have been following the Herrick’s adoption journey to Max and Elle know two times Elle has refused the love of a family. She is scared. She has no idea what is in store for her when she ages out of the only home she has ever known. She will not stay there forever. Pain, heartache, grief await her. While these three await all of us in some form or another, praying through them all with a family is far greater than dying because of them-alone.
I’d love to share a picture of Elle; however, for some reason my computer is only saving some pictures as pictures and some pictures I have to choose the file in which to open them…even then it doesn’t let me click the “always use this program when…” button. Irritating. Not exactly sure why it’s doing that. Dan’s is being the same way…hmm. In any case, Elle is 8, tall and beautiful with light brown hair. She’s scared of flying and scared to leave her safe place. PLEASE if you do nothing else, please join my children in their pleas to our Father to remove her fears so she will want to leave the orphanage and join a forever family! *I may add, Elle, like Mayah has Treacher-Collins Syndrome and is deaf* So I have a special special place in my heart for this treasure from God.
Colleen’s blog about Max and Elle is private. So if you’d like an invite or want to inquire about Elle please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll hook you up!
So, to end this post: 2011 will be our year of learning God’s mercies are new every morning. Dan and I continue to pray for our family’s vision both long-term and short-term. We know if we look to Him, HE will guide our paths.
Happy New Year everyone. It’s another year to glorify the Lord. Thank you for your prayers-they are working.