That Is Who You Are

Dear Boo,

I smiled today when I was reminded that you were born on the anniversary of D-day.  Anyone who meets you knows that you do not back down, you will keep going and that you are a defender of the weak.  You are so strong.  You are so confident.  You know who you are.  In fact, when you opened up your present from brother, you immediately said “yup, she looks just like me” after realizing you got a Pocahontas barbie.  You don’t apologize for your strengths.  You find it strange when others don’t embrace their own strengths.  Many times, I hear Veil being cheered on to do something she thought she couldn’t do until you came along.  But that’s you.  Weakness doesn’t scare you; it inspires you into action.

Recently when we were working on another worship song for our church, you heard the recording and stood in front of the microphone and started to sing your little heart out.  I love that when worship songs come on, you don’t sing gently and quietly to yourself.  No, that is not you.  You sing at the top of your lungs with strength and vibrato.  If the words are coming out of your mouth, then they are going to be sung with conviction.

You taught me one of the most valuable lessons I will hold onto in my adult life, this I am certain of.  We had recently purchased a used mini iPad to help us get through online school, since the school chrome books were never able to handle zoom meetings.  Mom and dad went and laid down for a much-needed nap and everyone found a corner in the house to be quiet.  We had a successful nap.  The next day when I was looking for the Ipad for school, you were reluctant to give it back.  You final caved and sheepishly brought it to me.  It was after peering into the large eyes that were bouncing back and forth between my face and the ground, that I realized the screen was completely shattered.

My shock scared us both.  I sent you to your room and went and found your father.  I was steaming mad and put myself in time out.  We don’t have nice things, we try so hard to take care of the expensive things we have.  My brokenness when I am met with anger always tells me, steam, stew, stay mad, give the silent treatment and withhold affection.  A vicious cycle that has loomed for too long in generations.

BUT then…

God whispered in my ears, He tugged on my heart and I found myself, sitting on the floor of your room.  I asked you why you didn’t tell us when it first happened and hid the tablet.  I explained we wouldn’t have been so upset had you told us right away.  Without missing a beat, you looked up from the blocks you were staking and looked me straight in the eyes, with tears running down your cheek, “but that doesn’t make sense”.

It was then that I was faced with my own sin.  How often I think I can hide my failures and mistakes under the couch cushion and hope God never asks about them.

I reached out to you, I told you “it’s because in this family truth always wins, telling the truth means that you are taking responsibility for your mistake and it’s our job to love you, no matter what”.

When you are older, I hope to tell you that that very conversation over a broken Ipad was the lesson of GRACE that my stubborn heart could finally fathom, it only took 35 years to do so.

I have no idea what you are going to be when you grow up.  Your other siblings, I see threads of their character pointing them into certain professions.  When it comes to you, I have to smile and say with complete humility “I don’t know”.  But I think it is supposed to be this way.  You weren’t meant to fit into a box.  You don’t like being told what to do, because anything you do, has to be your own conviction.  You can’t stand it when I try to help you on something and many times I learned its easier to walk away and say “let me know if you need help” rather then standing there telling you how to do it, because then your dad ends up needing to come and separate us.

You laugh, oh you laugh and it is infectious, because you don’t laugh at everything, you have a quick wit and when you have understood the bottom layer, you laugh and laugh with your whole face, your eyes and eye brows tell us everything.  Which makes me laugh even harder.

Its always on your birthday that I am reminded that you were the promise that came in the form of a rainbow.  A little life that we will only ever meet in Heaven was taken so that you could come and change the world.  It doesn’t make sense, but more times then I can count I have heard God say “see, you needed her”.

Boo, its true.  Your identity that has been rooted all along in Christ is being lived out before my eyes.  You know you are a daughter of the King.  You know that Jesus loves you.  You ask me when ever there is music playing, “this is Jesus music right?”, with one eye brow raised.  Reminding me to change my station back to elevation worship from Ed Sheeran.  I love hearing you sing yourself to sleep.  After an incredibly hard day, after another hard day in our country, you were singing “way maker, miracle worker, promise keeper, light in the darkness, my God that is who you are” and just when I thought I couldn’t cry, you began to crescendo “that is who you are, that is who you are…”  You were leading an orchestra of angels in your bedroom, that I am for certain.

Today you are 6 years old!  It is your golden birthday!!! 

We got you a “speed bike” and I heard countless times, “I just love feeling the wind in my face”

It was supposed to be the year you get a party, but Covid.  So instead you got to spend the day with your best friend.  You guys road your bikes to the park, ate fancy lunchables, painted, drew with chalk and literally told me to “leave you alone” while you caught up with your bestie.  And being exactly who you are, you insisted on a 3 layer cake with fresh blueberries and strawberries.

We loved celebrating you booberry blast

May the Lord always keep your feet firmly planted.  May you always believe you are who He says you are.  May you always be the defender of the weak and one who lifts them up.  May your voice of praise be the greatest weapon as you face trials and may Grace be what guides you through this life on earth.

Happy birthday Ya’el Ariel Ruth


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