Heart Etchings From a Yet-to-Be-Mom
An unread letter written on Sept 10, 2011
“Right now, little one, you are just the size of a grain of rice. Even now, as God is fashioning your life, He is masterfully weaving His plans for you in each stand of your make-up. He picked out each gene. Chose the day your life would begin. Knew every personality trait you’d need to walk out the calling He’s placed on your life. And He designed you with purpose. You are a precious creation, who He has entrusted to your dad and me. Although we are scared of the journey ahead of us as parents, we are filled with joy and delight as we marvel at the craftsmanship of God and in His loving faithfulness to equip us to raise you in His ways. Even now, you are so loved. May your heart be infused with the peace, joy, and grace of the unconditional love of the Father.”
My child never got to read those words. But then again, maybe she did. Or at least, similar words—the same words that are etched into all our hearts.
“Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;
you formed me in my mother’s womb.
I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking!
Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
I worship in adoration—what a creation!
You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body;
You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,
how I was sculpted from nothing into something.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.”
(Psalm 139:13-16, MSG)
Sculpted from nothing into something. I love that. Always have. But as an author, I’ve experienced those words in an even deeper context. I know what it’s like to watch a blank page transform into a reflection of my heart. I know what it’s like to feel the vision of something yet created to soar through me with anticipation. To watch a creation form bit by bit with strands of purpose and design from conception to birth.
But I also know what it’s like to have that artwork tied inseparably to who I am. To have threads of connection woven throughout my heart. To carry the burden of hope for that artwork to flourish in the fullness of its promise to bless and touch others’ lives.
Do you recognize it? It’s the heart of an artist. The heart of a parent. The same heart God designed for each of us. Even if you’re not a birth parent, you leave fingerprints of artistry on people’s hearts all around you. You encourage them in God’s promises and cheer them in the creativity of their own gifts.
It happens in the everyday moments when you invest into others again and again and again.
When you get up every morning even when your body is screaming from sleep deprivation, you’re sowing selflessness.
When you break out the air microphone and high heels and have a dance party with your kids in the middle of the day, you’re sowing acceptance.
When you have a million other things to do, but you carve out space in your day to have coffee with a friend and offer a listening ear, you’re sowing encouragement.
When you make time to read bedtime stories with your children when your head is barely staying on your shoulders, you’re sowing value.
When you catch yourself before you scream, or even when you fail big time, but ask for forgiveness, you’re sowing grace and character.
All the investments and sacrifices of your time, energy, and heart. It’s here, in these ordinary moments where you trace the Father’s words inscribed in their hearts, deepening the Artist’s call to the creation He’s sculpted from nothing into something.
Maybe, like me, you haven’t had the chance to read a letter like the one at the beginning of this post to a natural child. But just as it’s being read over you right now, will you read it over someone in your life and continue letting your own heart etchings sow hope into another’s.