This past Sunday, we had the privilege to partner with parents and families who are committing to teach and model the life and words of Christ for their own children. As a community, we are committing to support these parents and children and model for them the grace Christ has given to us. Below are some of the families who participated and their description and hopes for their children.
- Parents: Kelly & Steven
- What phrase describes your child? Sweet, independent, funny, inquisitive
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? Truthfully, we just liked her name from early on in Kelly’s pregnancy. It was only when she was 7 months old that we realized our Amelia was born on Amelia Earhart’s birthday! So evidently she was destined to be Amelia before we even knew she was a girl.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? As our first, Amelia has introduced us to parenting in all its wonderful/crazy/sweet/hectic glory. Her smile and laugh give us more joy than we knew possible, as does watching her learn and figure things out. We’ve been challenged as we try to adjust to the ways she effects our relationship with each other and our expectations of ourselves.
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? That she would know how crazy loved she is, unconditionally, by us and by God. That she would never doubt her worth and that she would enjoy her one wild and precious life.
CADE ALCEE’ & COLETTE ELIZABETH MOUTON
- Parents: Carrie & Brian
- What phrase describes your child? Emmitt is our sweet, happy, and very willful boy. His first expression on waking up and last before going bed is a big smile but from his first bath in the hospital to the last time we put him in his car seat, he has always made certain we know when he’s not happy in a situation.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? Emmitt’s first name comes from the street, Emmitt Run, on which both Bri and I lived prior to getting married. His middle name, Theodore, is inspired by Carrie’s Uncle Ted. Uncle Ted graduated at age 16 from a 2 room school house in Kansas and went on to get his doctorate in education. He was the president of several small colleges and universities and is the beloved world traveller of the family.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? We have delighted in watching Emmitt grow into his fun and funny personality. His laugh is the single best sound on this earth, just give his belly a tickle and you’ll know if’s true! We have felt challenged, like all new parents, by the chronic exhaustion that comes along with a new baby. We very much look forward to taking a long nap and sleeping through the night sometime in the next few years. We struggle to give each other grace at times as parents and spouses when dealing with a new baby, the 12 hour shifts that keep Bri away from home, and having no family close by.
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? We pray that he realizes how much he’s loved and that he finds ways to show love to those around him.
- Parents: Autumn & Zach
- What phrase describes your child? Fox is vibrant, affectionate, inquisitive, and extremely silly . He loves nature, books, and robots. One of the best quotes to describe him “ A child is a curly dimpled lunatic” – Emerson.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? The name Fox was originally on the name list a result of my obsession with the X-fiiles when I was younger. But we were told we were having a girl so were pretty surprised when he was born, not a girl. I felt like the name Fox was fitting because he had us all tricked. On our second night together in the hospital we were all alone and I was trying different names on him, I felt like his little spirit kept telling me over and over that his name was Fox so stop trying with all the others.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? The greatest joys raising him have been watching his personality unfold, watching him make friends, and the crazy amount of love. The challenges have come from so much will and so little power to express it (aka toddlerhood).
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? Our hope for him is that he can find what he loves and then make a life doing it. We hope that he knows he is loved and that it gives him the security to live in his true self.
- Parents: Natalie & Randy
- What phrase describes your child? Icon loves to be held, and to be outside. He is a serious extrovert and love to sample smells. He moans when going to sleep and smiles really big. He likes to dance to music and to sing and be sung to.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? Randy’s dad came up with the name Icon as a passing thought, when Randy was 12, while watching a movie with him. 17 years later the name still at the top of Randy’s mind he told Natalie that that would be the name of his first child. She was of course apprehensive (was definitely against it). Randy kept on and when Natalie first felt him kicking the only name she could think of was Icon. “Icon” is a model to live up to a symbol of something great. The church sees “icon” as a venerated symbol of Christ. In dealing with Randy and Natalie’s families of origin we see him as a breaking from he old way of our families. A symbol of the future that we will nurture and love unconditionally forever.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? Singing has been a real joy for Randy as I watch his face light up. Also after 2 years and 3 miscarriages God gave us a perfect baby that wants attention and has no trouble returning affection. Natalie like watching him learn new things and do cool stuff. She also loves the interconnectedness of the mother son relationship. And cuddling.
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? We would hope and pray that as he grows he would feel loved unconditionally and have the courage to be himself in front of us and the world. Above all we wish him joy and peace throughout the turbulence of life and a feeling of acceptance from us his parents.
- Parents: Sarah & Colin
- What phrase describes your child? I would say Josie is full of sunshine – she just brings a joy and enthusiasm to everything she does. She’s not shy and loves new people and new experiences and wants to try everything.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? Josie is a family name on Colin’s side – his great-grandmother was Josephine but went by Josie. Our Josie is just Josie, but that suits her somehow. Kathryn (her middle name) is for my mom.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? Raising a child has brought us so much joy – it’s almost indescribable. I feel like I understand God’s love for His church in such a different way since Josie came into the world. It’s hard to know that complete, unconditional, self-sacrificing love until you have this small creature who is just fully dependent on you. The timing of Josie’s birth has been really meaningful for Colin and me, and my immediate family, as well. She was an unexpected surprise several years before we thought we’d be parents, but was born only a month before my dad’s ALS diagnosis. So it was incredibly special that he had the chance to know a grandchild before he left us in January. Challenges? We both work full time and really enjoy our careers and are passionate about what we do – so finding a way to balance your desires for parenting and your desires for personal and professional growth is really tough – I feel like we’ll never fully figure that out… I wish there were more hours in the day!
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? We pray that Josie would come to know Jesus in a deeply personal way on her own terms and that we will be able to help foster and encourage that, without standing in the way or stunting her spiritual growth. I want her to know the fullness of love that comes from a big family – both our blood family and the friends and community we surround ourselves with. I want her to see as much of the world as she can to truly appreciate God’s glorious creation – most especially the amazing people that populate the earth.
- Parents: Lindsay & Parker
- What phrase describes your child? HAPPY! Also energetic, spirited, curious, social, and good-natured.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? The name Matilda means “mighty in battle,” but that’s not really why we named her that. Lindsay always liked the name Matilda, because her mom read the book Matilda by Roald Dahl to her and her sister Molly when they were kids. It was one of Lindsay’s favorites, because the fictional Matilda was so smart, curious, and brave. When we imagined our daughter, we hoped she’d be all those things.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? We love watching Matilda explore her world; she’s constantly moving around to look at everything. It’s also fun to see her interact with people and smile at everyone she meets. She is always alert and engaged in her surroundings. Every day with her has been so much sweeter than we ever could have dreamed. As far as challenges we’ve experienced: sleep! It’s gotten so much better in the last few months, but those newborn days were tough, and then we got slammed by the four-month sleep regression pretty intensely too. (Overall, though, it’s a good tradeoff. We’ll gladly be a little tired if it means we get to have such sweetness in our lives.)
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? We hope that she’ll feel bold and brave because she knows how much and how unconditionally she’s loved. We hope that she’ll continue to explore the world and find things that spark her curiosity and excite her. We hope that she’ll continue to be joyful and to share that joy with the people around her.
- Parents: Jen & Dave
- What phrase describes your child? Our girl Ruth is a peaceful, curious baby.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? Her name means companion, friend, and we pray that she would be a friend to all. Both Ruth and Eady are family names.
- What has given you joy in raising your child and what are some challenges you’ve experienced? It is our joy to see her be held by her older brother.
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? We pray their bond continues to grow stronger as they age. We have loved watching her first smiles and hope that she will be a girl full of wonder and joy.
- Parents: Camille & Marcos
- What phrase describes your child? Sebastian’s calm demeanor and precious personality have made it so enjoyable to raise him these past 10 months. He’s a flexible and go-with-the-flow kind of baby. He’s chill and hands out smiles for almost nothing.
- What’s the significance of your child’s name? His first name doesn’t have any particular meaning for us. We just thought it was a good name. He shares a middle name with his father.
- What are your hopes/prayers for your child? Our hopes are that he be empathetic towards others and curious about the world around him. We pray he loves others well and has faith in and a relationship with God.
[Family Instax Photos by Elaine Roome]
Rachel Elizabeth MoutonLink to this comment
What a special Mother’s Day we had! Thanks to Vox Veniae for facilitating such a fun and memorable morning!