Saturday, August 24, 2013

Our first birthday with Levi

I can hardly believe you're two! It's been 14 months since I've laid eyes on you
around 10 months old in that purple shirt with the heart on it with a strong but stoic look on your face. Even at 10 months you were a survivor. A survivor for the 15% mortality rate in children in DR Congo under 5. A survivor in the harsh conditions for children abandoned in a city of millions. You held on. You held on to your sister to survive as she held on to hope and to you. I hope you forever are grateful to God and to your sister who carried you. Your sister who gave up a little of her childhood to aid in your survival. I pray your bond is unbreakable. Now looking back its even more fitting we named you Levi meaning attached or joined. Because it is those qualities in your spirit that have lent to your survival. Even today, you hold on for dear life to me. You just want to be held close. You have a close circle of people that you cling to when they're around.

Your heart is so obedient. Sure you have your normal toddler defiance every now and then, but more than any of our kids you have the desire to obey and listen. I hate to admit I have forgotten you were in time out a time or two as you sat quietly in the kitchen with me with your hands folded in your lap for 10+ minutes. I pray that quiet obedience translates into a quiet strength, hope and trust in Jesus.
There is a verse I've prayed over you in mark 2:13 where Jesus calls Levi the tax collector and he immediately follows. That night Levi invites Jesus and his disciples and other tax collectors and "notorious sinners" to eat at his house. The Pharisees saw this and didn't understand why Jesus would eat with such low people. Jesus responds,"healthy people don't need a doctor, sick people do. I have come to call sinners, not those who already think they are good enough". Levi is the one who also carries the cross a little of the way up to Calvary.
My prayer is that god uses your story. Your beginnings. Your survival. Your quiet strength. To call sinners to himself. I pray when you encounter Jesus you immediately follow. And I am so grateful to Jesus and you for taking me down the journey of showing me I am the sick one. I am the orphan. And pulling me away from a life where I am just good enough. But yet to see his righteousness cover all my sin. 
Happy birthday my very silly, quite vivacious, often shy, sometimes quiet, high squealing, sibling chasing, airplane loving, ball bouncing, fast running, high jumping, water bug, diaper removing, kiss giving, hug loving two year old.
Your life is special. It counts. Your story will be great. All good stories have to rise up above great odds stacked against them and survive in the midst of heartache, trauma and pain. Beauty from ashes my son.

1 comment:

  1. kylie. sometimes i just don't have the words to properly respond to your writings on your family. beyond beautiful. thank you for sharing. you were made to raise these kids and inspire so many of us. levi - you're a doll.