The Lord has given you twelve years of LIFE!
And your life has been a blessing to our family. ♥
You are ...
interested in others
compassionate to those who are hurting
a seeker of joy
a faithful friend
a seeker of justice
a seeker of truth
... and we appreciate and rejoice that you possess these character qualities!
You have been a thoughtful observer since you were a toddler. You did not speak, but you took in everything going on around you with great interest. I often wondered what you were thinking and looked forward to the day when you would be able to tell me - and now you can. And do!
I love your curiosity about the world and the people around you, Josiah. I encourage you, in your observations, be sure to look at yourself first and measure what you see against the standards of Scripture. It is easy to look at everyone else, making assessments and pronouncing judgments while never searching your own heart to discover and confess your personal weaknesses and sin.
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23, 24
When you search your own heart daily and let the Lord take care of everyone else, you will find great joy in the freedom that comes from possessing a correct biblical view of self, and who you are in Christ, which then creates a proper and biblical view of others.
You are valuable, Josiah Timothy.
You are worthy of love.
What you can or cannot do does not define who you are.
Who appreciates you or rejects you does not define your worth.
You surrendered your life to Him when you were a little boy, and you will spend the rest of your life in continual surrender to Him when you choose to die to self and submit to your Savior.
It is not easy, death to self. We want our way, and we want it now.
He says, "Take up your cross daily and follow ME. For I am the way, the truth, and the life. And I came to give you life ABUNDANT. Feed on My Word, drink from My well of living water. Do not lean on your own ways or your own intelligence, but lean wholly on Me. I know what you need before you even ask, and I know how to bear your burdens and give you the rest you need when you are weary. I am the vine and you are the branches. Abide in Me, for apart from Me you can do nothing."
I pray you will always, always, want to follow Christ, Josiah.
I pray you will be willing to fearlessly stand up for truth.
I pray you will give a voice to the voiceless and protect the innocent.
I pray you will notice those who are forgotten and neglected - and show them kindness.
The Lord has given you twelve years of life, Josiah, not for your glory, but for His.
Make your life count.
Do something that matters.
Invest your time and energy in eternal pursuits.
Encourage the disheartened.
Comfort the brokenhearted.
Urge your brothers and sisters to seek after and love God more.
You were named after a boy king who turned a rebellious people back to their God.
Your name means "God saves, God heals, God supports."
Follow in the king's footsteps, son ...
encouraging others to turn their eyes heavenward, seeking the Savior while He may still be found.
Happy 12th birthday!
♥ You are precious, Josiah Timothy Eastman, and I love you. ♥