Dear Madeleine Noelle,
Yesterday you were baptized. It was a beautiful, memorable, Spirit-filled day, one I'll never forget. We started out in the morning, you snuggled up between Daddy and I, talking about your special day. We reminded you that this day would only come once in your life. We talked about the meaning of baptism, why you had decided to be baptized, and what Jesus has done for you.
We gave you a small cross on a silver chain to commemorate the day. You were delighted and thanked us profusely for this "most wonderfulest gift!"
We talked about that day last September when you prayed the prayer asking Jesus to be the ruler of your life.
You asked about Sam getting baptized, and we talked about how Sam will one day get to make that decision for himself. We talked about the importance of continuing to share with Sam who Jesus is and what he's done, that one day Sam might embrace his love and call him Savior, too.
You asked if you could wear your necklace in the pool during the baptism, and I smiled, "yes, of course."
We shared lots of tender snuggles and kisses in bed as we celebrated you and what God has done in your life!
Later that afternoon we gathered with over 100 other people to celebrate what God has been doing in the Open Door ministry this past year. We sat on the Davis' lawn while Daddy shared about the meaning of baptism and why it is significant.
Daddy had asked me ahead of time to share about how I've seen God at work in your life. This is what I said: long before you was born, even before you were conceived, it was our hope and prayer that we would not only be parents, but have children who walked with Jesus. From early on it was clear God blessed you with many gifts, but you were exceptionally curious and inquisitive as well as compassionate and kind. We prayed God would use your curiosity to draw you to himself and your compassion to draw others to Him.
In this past year, our prayers have been answered. Eight months ago you acknowledged Jesus as your savior. Since then we've seen the Spirit growing and increasing in you. We've witnessed you discipling your little brother. You've reached out in care and compassion countless times to those who were hurting. You ask the deepest, most profound questions and many times I defer to Daddy in order to satiate your quest for truth!
In particular, we saw how God has enabled you to speak truth and compassion to your friends when just last week, you came alongside a buddy at school who was feeling sad and a little unsure. You put your arm around her, stood next to her, and gently reminded her that she was God's precious child, and nothing would ever change that.
You are not only an answer to our prayers for a child, but even more so, God has answered our prayers that you would seek and follow him. Your inquisitive nature has given you an incredible depth of knowledge of the character of God. You know that he is always with you, always loving, always forgiving. Your compassionate nature has drawn countless friends and family members into a deeper understanding of the love of God.
We are delighted in who you are. You are so, so precious to us. But even more amazing than that, you are precious and beloved and a daughter of the most high King, God himself. We praise him every day that he has allowed us to be your parents, to walk with you in truth, and to see you grow in faith and maturity.