As you come to him, the living Stone--rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him--you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2: 4-5

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Tale of Two Parents...

two sets of parents, that is. That's what this weekend was to me...two sets of parents, two different days, two good examples.

On Saturday, we met Grandma in Conyers for what has become a much anticipated event in our household: the birthday shopping spree with Grandma. Instead of guessing what the big kids would like for their birthdays, she has, for the last few years, given them a shopping spree so that they could pick out something that they like. Since Maddy and Sarah have birthdays so close together, they went on a combined trip, and the little girls, Josh, and I tagged along for the fun.

Josh and Hannah had fun, but were shopping weary by the time we got to Old Navy.

Sweet Charlotte, hanging out in the stroller.
Grandma and the grandkids at the end of our day of shopping.
I am so thankful for my parents. They have always been there to pick up the pieces when things fall apart. Ten years ago, they were my lifeline. When I thought I couldn't go on, when I couldn't stand on my own, when I didn't know where to turn, they were there to encourage, lend a hand, hold me up--physically, emotionally, financially. If it was a hardship for them, an inconvenience, a bother, they never said so. They never made me feel anything but loved. Never did anything but lift us up. Dropped what they were doing with one phone call. They showed me what family meant--loving unconditionally, helping without pause, giving from your heart. And ten years later they are still there...and I am still as thankful as I was then. And I hope that someday, I am able to help my children the way that they have helped me.
Thank you Mom and Dad. I love you!
On Sunday, we met up with the Stone side of the family after church to celebrate PawPaw's 78th birthday.

Gail, an honorary Stone, holding Charlotte for me while she slept.
PawPaw's cakes. It was neat to see pictures of him when he was younger. I never realized how much all of the kids and grandkids look like him (other than the Stone V-ha!) until I saw these pictures.
PawPaw right before he blew out the candles.

Charlotte trying out her new red shoes!
And hanging out with her cousin Angela. Notice that she's got a fistful of Angela's hair--Hannah had earlier told me (when Char had a fistful of Hannah's hair) that Charlotte did this to people she loves!
Hannah and cousin Addison. Both pretty in pink and ponytails. Addison is expecting a baby brother in a couple of months. Sadly, cousin Benji was not here!

I've always thought that it was an incredible testimony to Nanny and PawPaw that each of their children and all of their grandchildren are so grounded in the Lord, and today I had a chance to hear about it first hand. At the end of the party, after everyone had packed up their dishes and food (ahem...noone told me to bring anything!!) but before everyone headed out, each one of the five children (Denise, Donna, Darlene, Daryl, and David) talked about how their father had shaped their faith. So touching, so moving--and the second time in only a handful that I've seen my husband in tears. I sincerely hope that when our children are grown and have children of their own, that they can look back and see how Daryl and I looked to the Lord for guidance in our marriage, our family, our lives; that they can look to us as examples; that they saw the love of their Heavenly Father through our love for them.

Ephesians 6:1-4 ESV Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

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