3 months old.

3:33 PM

   I'm a little late on this guy's 3-month update, but better late than never!  William continues to stretch out and pack on the lbs, clocking in at 14.2 and 25" currently.  For the most part, things have gone surprisingly well, although he is battling a cough right now that just does not seem to want to go away.  It has lingered f-o-r-e-v-e-r and so we're just trying to get all of that figured out.

   William is lucky enough to have two first cousins within two months of his age.  Parker (pictured above) on the Smucker side and Kason (pictured below, only a few hours old) on the Graber side.  I can't wait to watch these sweet boys grow up together!  

   In light of all that's been on my mind and heart lately with the school shooting and gender confusion in our culture, raising a son feels more weighty than ever.  I am raising a man who will have influence, leadership and authority in his home, church and community.  Randy and I will be the first influencers in his life.  The first motivators.  The first role models.  The first counselors.  The first advisers. 

   Sometimes this feel overwhelming and even a teensy bit terrifying, but mostly, it's just such an honor and a privilege.  Never let the fear of "the state of our society" deter you from having kids.  We don't need to raise our children in fear of what culture or the world around them will do to them.  Will we be perfect in our parenting?  Nope.  Will we make mistakes?  Definitely.  Been there, done that.  But we still don't have to live in fear.  For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.  

I cannot get that Roseburg shooter off of my mind.

   Not to give him glory or recognition, or make him a celebrity, but something we HAVE TO RECOGNIZE is that somebody, somewhere, somehow, in that young man's life, missed him.  It may have been his mother, father, grandparents, friends, or all of the above, but in any case, someone missed him.  Someone wasn't seeing him, caring about him, nurturing him, and calling him to greatness.  Someone wasn't teaching him that God doesn't give us a spirit of fear.  

Because he gave into fear.
He gave into weakness.
He gave into cowardice.
He gave into hate.
He gave into powerlessness.
He gave into destruction.

   And perhaps now, more than ever before, the world needs a generation rising up who hears those things.  We need sons and daughters being surrounded with strength and love and HOPE.  Not perfection!  I would never even dream of attaining perfection in my parenting.  But we cannot let that stop us!  There is too much riding on us to let perfection bring us down.  

   We need to stand up tall in the MIDDLE OF OUR MESS and be thankful for the opportunities to show grace, forgiveness, redemption and second chances to our children.  They need to see that too. Imagine what a different world this could be if the children grew up seeing that.  

If only that young man had grown up knowing that. 

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