As I have shared before Paul's Grandpa Morgan is not doing well and is not expected to make it much longer- hospice is now saying Thanksgiving, maybe Christmas.
Izzy was told by her older cousin Kyleigh that Grandpa Morgan was going to heaven (I didn't know this at the time). The next morning as we were driving to bible study Izzy out of the blue starts asking questions about heaven, mainly who will be there. She went down the family line asking if so and so would be in heaven and it was almost always a yes. She asked if she would be going to heaven too. I told her that if someday she loved Jesus so much and knew that He took away her sins that she would go to heaven too.
"No! I don't want to go!" she said through some tears, "I want to stay in Michigan!". So sweet. I encouraged her and told her she didn't have to go right now that we just wait for God to ask us to go.
Well that evening she on her own accord asked where heaven was as we were getting ready for bed. We continued to talk about heaven and she asked lots of questions. I could tell she was getting it- and her heart was ripe. She could answer some of the basic understanding questions:
Who died on the cross? Why did he do that? What is sin? Have you done bad things? Do you love Jesus? etc.
So, with her Mommy and Daddy's help Izzy prayed to Jesus and asked Him to forgive her so she could go to heaven!!!! After praying I asked her if there was anything else she wanted to tell Jesus and she said, "I'm so excited to go to Heaven."
Even though she is young, I believe Izzy's heart was ripe for this message. It was spurred not by us, but by a movement of the holy spirit through her cousin and through a situation. She doesn't need to know the full theological understanding- that will come. But she does seem to understand those basic ideas, and more importantly, her little heart desired it!
Its amazing to think a heart was so ready to hear this message. I'm still in shock.
We told her after she prayed that the angels in heaven were having a party becuase Izzy would be coming there someday. She was bummed she couldn't go to the party. So we will celebrate here on earth. Our girl is heavenbound!
As a Thomas Nelson Publisher Book Reviewer, I choose Redefining Beautiful as my next book to read and review. I choose this book primarily as a mom. It is designed for young women- those in their teens and early twenties written by Jenna Lucado- daughter of Max Lucado. I want to prepare myself as a mom of a daughter how I can begin instilling in her even in the preschool years that she is special, beautiful, and cherished.
Redefining Beautiful encourages young ladies to focus on life accessories that God designed and cherishes in his Girls to be beautiful in His standards. Life accessories such as confidence, joy, self control, value, and love. Intertwined with scripture references are beauty tips, stories from real girls (including Jenna herself), and notes from Max that provide a valuable insight from an earthly father's standpoint.
Ms. Lucado includes some insightful thoughts and strategies to encourage young women to discover who they are, why they are the way they are, and how they can learn to love who they are and realize their unique identity. One of my favorite sections talked about earthly fathers and our Heavenly father. A profound statement I felt was on page 75 "Though our earthly dads will impact who we are, it's only our heavenly Dad's love that can define who we are."
This book would work wonderfully as a small group bible study guide or as individual study. There are many questions posed by the other and include space for writing answers right in the book. I could see this working extremely well as a a group discussion for teens and ladies in their young twenties (college age). Discussing how we are made beautiful in God's sight, lifting one another in prayer, challenging each other to dress and act appropriately, and discovering how our life accessories given to us by God can encourage us would have made my teen and young twenty years more successful and uplifting, as opposed to the constant comparisons and competitiveness that lingers even in Christian circles. If you have a daughter, I would encourage you to get this book for her, and find a mentor or group of girls she can go through it with, or even go through it with her. It will lift her self esteem, give her confidence to face the trials of peer pressure, and when done in a group will build cohesive unity as women of God instead of walls of competitive worldly desires.
The only critique I would have for the book is that the writing lacks some continuity and jumps from topic to topic rather quickly. The extra boxes were helpful, but broke up the text too much and took extra effort in tying the concepts together.