Praying for you, Deacon~
Dear Precious Lord, I thank you so much for my firstborn. You have created this beautiful boy with a heart that melts others... and one that already loves you. You have created him with a tenderness and love that brings me great joy. As he grows and learns, he continues to amaze us with his sweet spirit, his quick independence, his tender words and his total dependence on us right now. It is my prayer that soon it will be totally on you! Deacon's fun-loving nature, his ability to love life to the fullest and find enjoyment in little things fill my heart with joy. The way he loves his friends and is so concerned about others at 2 years-old makes me, as his mother, praise you even more!
Thank you Lord for the beautiful way you have put his life, his heart together. And thank you for your understanding, my Great God... for your knowledge of our lives before time began. Thank you for knitting him together inside me, designing him to be so much. Through our precious Deacon you have given me a glimpse of the depth and width of your great love for us. My overwhelming joy in Deacon is a small comparison to your enormous joy in us, your children. In the same way, Deacon's disappointments, fears, outbursts, lack of understanding and tears directly reflect ours when we come to you, standing tall in your face or humbly on our knees, seeking answers, advice, comfort and a promise for the future.
Lord, in some way I know you created Deacon for a time such as this. His life means so much and I know full well you have marvelous things in store for him... And yet, I trust with confidence that a part of who he is is intertwined in this most recent storm in our lives.Thank you for knowing my heart and for knowing what we would need to bring us to dry land.
Undoubtedly, Holy Lord, you have been our refuge and strength and have truly carried us through deep, raging waters that have flooded our earth... In a strange way though, Deacon has been like my ark, my place to "crawl in to." As I have sat huddled with him, tears streaming down my face, somehow he has been the physical manifestation of the ark, while I fully trusted you were guiding our journey and protecting our hearts and lives as the world fell down around us.
My God, my love and my protector, I trust, as you spoke in Genesis 8, that day and night will never cease until your Son returns. That as surely as night falls in our lives, the day, the dawn is poised to come again. You allow us to fully trust you through the days and nights. Help us teach Deacon what it means to fully rely on you through it all; to teach him of your unending love, so that he may experience it firsthand, and to bring him up to be a child that lives only for you.
Thank you for your goodness, your mercy, your grace, your peace, your restoration, your promises, your justice, your joy... and mostly thank you for your Son. It is through Him and his sacrifice that we trust in eternity, and that we are able to fully enjoy our Deacon here with us.
Thank you Lord for my son, my joy... my Deacon.
"Guide me in your truth and teach me, O Lord, for you are God my Savior and my hope is in you all day long."- Psalm 25:5~ Claimed for Deacon Charles Stanfield
Praying for you, Maddox~
Holy Lord, my God, I praise you for my precious second son. I thank you Lord for the amazing way that you have moved in our lives. My precious Maddox, Lord God, the one that arrived to your arms just 4 short months ago, has change my life. Lord, you know my heart and the longing that was present for this beautiful second child, even before his conception. Only you know the reason he was put together so wonderfully different and never intended to live out hims days on this Earth.
Precious Father, my heart aches for my tiny child... and yet, it rejoices knowing he is with you. Jesus, thank you for loving my child and holding him so tightly... It is because of your sacrifice that I have full confidence that I will one day hold him again... and the next time I do, it will be for eternity.
Merciful One, I look back over the last year and sometimes I can't believe this is my life. I would have never wanted, never wished, never imagined that I would have already given over one of my children to live in your presence... But I can't help but smile and be thankful. Isn't that where we all want to be? Don't we long for Heaven, for our eternal place in your kingdom? I've thought and prayed so many times this last year that you would fill my life with renewed joy and peace, that you would reassure me of your promises. Lord, you have answered my prayers and I continue to stand amazed at your true, steady, loving faithfulness.
Lord, our prayers for Maddox, as he lived here with us and thrived in my womb, were ones of faith, hope and love. We trusted you would answer each prayer as you continued to reveal yourself through scripture, sweet words spoken, the hands and feet of your people, and the prayers of thousands across the world. As we put all our hope in you, you spoke softly but clearly to my heart. We then knew, not with with a complete understanding, but with a sure confidence, what you were saying. When we left the hospital in much the same way we entered, I heard you speaking, "My precious children, Maddox is already with me. You trusted me with your lives and with his, and now you can rest easy knowing he is in My eternal loving care."
There is pain and hurt and longing Lord, to hold my little Maddox again, but you knew that his life, his witness, this testimony was so much more important than our sorrow. You had a plan for us, for him, just as it is written in Jeremiah 29:11. That plan, that kingdom building plan, is still in motion as you use us to tell of Maddox's sweet story and your total faithfulness. For those four hours we saw him and loved him face to face, we knew we were holding a piece of Heaven here on Earth.
Father, I think I must feel a little bit like Hannah in the Bible. Oh our sweet Maddox, how we prayed for you, just as Hannah prayed for her Samuel. Lord, you were faithful and brought him to us, not as we expected, but in many ways so much better than we ever imagined. I'm sure that as Hannah returned to that temple a few short years after she promised to give her son over to you, she did so with love, excited for his life of service dedicated to your kingdom. But I'm also sure she did so with tears steaming down her cheeks and a sadness for her life without Samuel in her presence. It's so similar to how I feel... my great love for my Maddox, but my even greater love for those who still need to know Christ. Maddox is resting in your tender arms, but what does eternity hold for those without you? On that Your word is very clear ...
"There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. ...The Lord brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up." 1 Samuel 2:2,6
Thank you Heavenly Lord, for the the time we had to fully enjoy Maddox. I thank you for the intimate knowledge I have of him and for the beautiful time we shared together. I long to know him more, but I am thankful of your promise to spend that time eternally in Heaven.
Sweet God, hold him tight. Tell him how much we love him, how proud of him we are for his strength and purpose, and that we miss him so greatly! Remind him that he will never be forgotten, that we will never be the same, and that his legacy will live on to bring others to a saving knowledge of you. Thank you for my son, my heart... my Maddox.
We love you our sweet Maddox and can't wait to hold you again one day!
"And now, thus says the LORD, your God, and he who formed you: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine."- Isaiah 43:1- Claimed for Maddox Donald Stanfield
Praying for you, Little Expectant One~
Oh my Lord God, how you have heard my prayers... I praise you for the miracle of life growing inside my body. Heavenly Father, you heard my cries to you, even before we met Maddox face to face; my cries of love, of anticipated loss, of restoration, and of longing for another child that was intended to stay on Earth. You allowed me to see light and hope glimmering in the dark tunnel we walked and you have again answered my prayers through this little person that you knit together in me.
Jesus, you know my heart and my full trust in you and the plans you have for our family. You also know my head and the way things can slowly creep in and set up residence- the concerns, the questions, and the fear of the unknown. Holy God, please keep these thoughts at bay. Help me to focus solely on you and the promises you have made to those who trust in your name. As I do each day Father, I simply pray that this child growing inside is one that is meant to stay with us. I pray for straight bones, clean blood, a healthy heart, a strong mind and a body that is created to sustain life on Earth.
Lord, as you sustained the Israelites through their 40 years in the desert, I too ask that you sustain us now. These darker times that we have walked are our own wilderness, and yet, just as you never left your chosen people, we know that you haven't left us either. This precious baby is in many ways like Joshua and Caleb seeing the Promised Land from afar. The safe arrival of this baby is still off in the distance and yet... I see it... my promised land.
Dear God, I know there are no guarantees in this life... but I also know that you hear my prayers and know and love me intimately... So I ask you to bring us there. As the Israelites arrived safely to the Promised Land after wandering in the unknown, I ask you to help us arrive safely to December, after this period of wandering through our own unknown. "He has watched over your journey through this vast desert. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything."- Deuteronomy 2:7
Sweet, Precious Lord, guide me with your gentle hand. I ask that you protect this baby and keep us safely in your arms. Lord, help us and others know of your great love, of your great provision, for each and every life. Jesus, you know our hearts... You know that we will never forget that we already have two precious boys that bring us great joy... one just rests in your arms instead of in ours. Help others to know that Maddox is and will always be part of our family... and just as Deacon talks about his little brother who is with you in Heaven, this expectant one will too know of big brother Maddox... he who paved the way to allow this new miracle in our lives.
Father, I pray for your wisdom and strength as we look forward to the safe arrival of our third child. I ask that your hand be on this baby, that in time our hands may too be on him; to hold, to love and to teach of you and your great faithfulness.
Oh Good and Holy God, thank you for your love for each of us, and especially for this new life that holds so much love in us already.
"I have prayed for this child and the Lord has granted me what I asked of Him."- 1 Samuel 1:27