Leland, our lion hearted leader

Oh goodness. I remember when a friend’s child turned five years old and I was so overcome.

And now it’s my turn. We’ve been doing life together, day in and day out, for the last five years. And I have treasured every minute. Perhaps not enjoyed. Perhaps not engaged like I should have. But definitely treasured. I have learned and grown and been transformed heart, mind, and strength through your little life, through great love for you.

O Leland. We didn’t know what we were saying when we called our roly-poly strawberry blonde hair bright blue eyed baby “Leland, the lion hearted leader”….

But it’s true. You, my love, are a lion hearted leader. You are bold and full of life; you motivate and encourage and inspire. Each person who meets you must engage you; you provoke response. The Lord has given you passion, energy, and strength to love Him with your all and love others well. He wants for you to live blessed, loving His word and serving His people. I love seeing glimpses of His glorious plan play out in your life. And I cannot wait to see what ends of the earth for His glorious name He takes you to. You love your daddy. You love your brother. You take care of your momma.

Fearlessly you live and love.

Which is so good, clearly God-given, since every day with you daddy + mommy are new at this – we’ve never raised a five year old before, not to mention a Leland. What a holy privilege! What a sacred duty + delight. You, fearless, and the two of us, trembling standing before the Lord, praying we lead you to Him – the Lion.

We eat cake and have a party and celebrate the life the Lord has given us, has given you. And we pray you accept His life even this year, that you may always live for Him, never turning back, never slowing down, always going further up and further in.

We pray for you, our Leland, that you will be the blessed man who delights in His Word, prospers in His way, and is known by Him today and for eternity. (Psalm 1)

We love you, Leland – Happy 5th Birthday!

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