Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Coming out of her shell

I love being a mother. I adore my girls and have so enjoyed watching them grow up. They inspire me to be a better woman, as I often wonder if the person they see is someone they would like to be like someday. Every now and then, I will hear one of them say, "Mama, I want to be just like you when I grow up." Oh how that melts my heart! But every now and then I will hear one of them say something that is not so nice, with a harsh tone and unkind words, and I will know exactly where she learned to speak like that. I breaks my heart and challenges me to do better. They echo and mimic everything they see and hear, so my mirrors follow me around as an ever-present reminder of my desperate need for Jesus.

I have watched them grow, their precious personalities and heart develop into the people who God is creating, and I absolutely love the process. I love that their personalities are different, so unique to who they are. My first-born is bold and carefree. She lacks virtually any inhibition or fear, though every now and then will demonstrate some restraint. My second-born on the other hand, is very reserved, cautious almost. She is much more of an observer and would prefer to take in a scene in its entirety before deciding to engage in it.

My father jokingly says that my first-born is the who will say here, "Here, hold my beer. I want to try that!" while her younger sister will sit back to watch, seeing if her sister lives or dies from the experience, before she will even point a toe in the direction of action.

Yeah, that pretty much sums it up.
But on this trip here in Africa, my Juju has surprised me thoroughly. I have seen her come out of her shell like never before. I have seen her boldly greet people, shaking their hands and interacting. I have watched her eat anything and everything that has been put in front of her. I have watched her lead children around, teaching the ABC's and drawing shapes in the sand. I have been amazed at her love of people and her eloquence to interact with them. She has truly been stunning!

And now, now she wants to go to school. She asks me everyday, "Mommy, is tomorrow the day that I get to go to school?" This coming from the girl who has cried virtually every time that she is taken to Sunday School class. But now, she says that she is excited to go to school. Praise God, because that crying at drop-off is just heart-wrenching!

You see it would be easy to label the girls as being this or that, but what I have seen is that you can never, ever, put anyone in a box with a label on it, because you just don't know what God is doing. He says in His Word that He is a doing a new thing, and so even that which we may recognize as something we have seen before, may come out to be completely different.

I look at my precious girls, and often wonder about their future. I wonder who they will be, what they will be like, and how God will use them to impact this world. I wonder if they will be leaders of many, teachers of the Word, humble servants of God. I wonder where they will serve and in what capacity.

I pray for their hearts, for the protection of their precious wellsprings of life, that even as it may be broken in this fallen world, it would not be crushed to despair. I pray that they would be set apart, making bold stands in their spheres of influence. And I pray that Jesus would be so real and alive in their lives, that His love just pours out into every one around them.

That is the joy of a mother, to watch her babies come out of their shells and be used for the glory of God.

That is the joy of a mother.


  1. Danielle FranciscoJuly 28, 2010 at 11:09 AM

    Beautifully written Shauna. My heart for my babies as well. May God use them in amazing and bold ways. And may they walk forward in love and courage.

  2. Amazed at all our kids teach US about life, kids and loving/serving the Lord. Awesome at your daughter's transformation. And your devoted mother's heart!


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