Dedicated.

Sunday, May 22 was a delightfully joyful day for the Bowden family.  At the 11 o’clock service Nazari Jeremiah was dedicated to the Lord in front of church family and friends who (although new) are dear.

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Under the lights and spoken words of the Children’s Equipping Center pastor, I unexpectedly found myself crying as firm hands were laid and sincere prayers were prayed.  Prayers for parental wisdom, for strength, for the spirit of parenthood to rest on us and that we would have a quiver full of both natural and spiritual children.  The whole event was furiously captured by both iPhone and camera as we huddled as a family, receiving new measures of identity.

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The situation produced water indicative of each of our temperaments- from my husband, sweat (he is known to be a man tireless in his efforts) and tears from me as I thought of how monumentous it was for me to be standing there, with my husband, and our son.  The convergence of the beauty of my husband’s and my stories of being born of water through Christ collided here in sweat and tears as we saw an example of the Lord’s dedication to us.  This day of dedication was about acknowledging the work of the cross, and committing the son we have been graciously given to the Man Who Gives Life…the root and cause of our koinonia affections.

As I reflected on the event later in the day, it stirred in me that the actual dedication came in many other iterations long before that Sunday morning.

It came from the mouth of my husband in his elementary years as he made declarations about the husband and father he was going to be (much to the disbelief of his mother), and during late night conversations I had with my godmother as I proclaimed that I would have a son and raise him to fear and love the Lord, ending cycles of fatherlessness in my family-line.

It came when we learned of the pregnancy and we prayed for wisdom and strength to embody Christ in parenthood.

It came when we were given the name Nazari Jeremiah (messenger consecrated unto the Lord) because there was no greater name that I could think of to speak over our son, in love, and no greater identifying traits he could have.

It came when we sat on our living room floor, wrapped our newborn in a prayer shawl, anointed him and prayed blessing, consecration and identity over him.

It comes when we love others intentionally and generously, pouring into them as they pour into us.

It comes as we choose to live our days with Jesus as our “One Thing” and receive the new mercies He lavishly gives.

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This dedication to the “daily life” pursuit of the Beauty of Jesus is no small commitment. Yes, I hunger for eternity in ways I cannot express and yes I yearn to see his kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven through worship and prayer, but the life that comes in between the corporate and private worship and prayer opportunities can be so discouraging, so draining.  I personally must recommit myself daily to fastening my eyes on the blazing Eyes of Passion that belong to Christ and accept that as my heart is postured for worship, everything I do is to the glory of His Name.

I don’t always feel like staying dedicated to the disciplines and commitments that we have said “yes” to (and I oftentimes feel like I have fallen short of that “yes”), but the reality of the Lord’s dedication to me, to Rick and to Nazari transcends any feeling I have (thank goodness).

His dedication is unfailing, and I rejoice in dedicating my son to the One Who First Loved us (1 John 4:19)!

How has Jesus shown His dedication to You this past week?

One thought on “Dedicated.

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