Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Birthday Girl

So, today's the day. Kt is 11. Her best friend spent the night in her new bedroom (finally finished and her mess has moved in!), they were awoken this morning by the dad who handed her a birthday iPod (we'll see how long she can keep it pristine... as he lectured her on how easily it can be scratched!) and now they are trying to wake up to the loudest TV downstairs. Where did the time go??

I know that parents everywhere must feel like their kids teach them innumerable things about life, and that is certainly the case with Kt. Most of the time, since she started talking like an adult at about 18 months old, I've felt like she is smarter than I am! And she very well might be. She has asked me questions I never thought of (more than I could write in a book!), she has dreamed bigger dreams than I ever dreamed, she has gone to places I've only heard about and farther than I did as a child and her aspirations go far beyond anything I ever anticipated my child ever envisioning. Somehow, it's just not enough for her to be a kid growing up in the 'burbs - it's like she feels stuck in an 11 year old body!

But God has her there for a reason. I am amazed watching how He develops her, teaches her, introduces her to His plan for her life. As we planned her birthday party this year, I wasn't really sure how this would work. She wanted to do something different - we'd talked about this for years - that didn't involve her receiving anything, but involved her friends in doing something bigger than themselves. Her passion for Africa has been apparent since attending Teen Mission camp in Florida with T at the age of 6. She decided to use her birthday as an opportunity for others to invest in something she believes in - mosquito nets for families in Africa. Still, I was a little concerned about how she would really feel about this endeavor. But that all washed away with the squeal of delight that pierced my ears after her party, when she jumped around our room with all the money in her hands yelling "14 bed nets, 14 bed nets!". I'm not sure why I was so concerned in the first place!

I guess the most amazing thing we can learn from our children is about the heart of God. He cares about the smallest things, the largest things, and most importantly, He infuses joy in our hearts when we see the world through His eyes. I see it's so much more than bed nets that He is pouring into Kt's heart and mind, but I also see that it will happen in His time.... and that's what we're trying to help her understand!

Happy Birthday, to the girl with the softest heart I know.


Kathryn said...

Happy bday, Katie!
It's astounding to me that she's 11! And she is beautiful inside and out. :-)

Randy and Terry said...

Oh, D!! I can hardly believe that is the same little one who would come into my office and smile a BIG smile at me!! She is growing into a beautiful young woman - inside and out. Isn't it just wonderful to watch? Enjoy every minute.