Dear Nephew,

You caught my heart first. You and your big feet and skinny frame. You and your premature three pound,nine ounce self had only to move a moment, and my heart flitted directly to your palms. You took me and I knew within an instant, I’d be your for the taking, for always and forever.

Today you’re going to turn nine years old, and I think I might actually tear up. You were the first who would learn to call me Auntie, which would quickly become ‘Aundee‘. By you, I am honored.

zoo with sai

That tiny, big footed body was too little for me to hold. I’d look right at you, and you at me with those butterfly lashes and bold heart. I was so afraid to hold such a tiny, beautiful, precious soul.

Even while you had to lay there in that incubator, I seen the strength of your heart float up, and down without fear. You’re my little fighter.

And you’ve had to go through some mucky waters. And if I could be entirely honest with you, I’d say boldly how much I had to fight every Auntie instinct in my body not to just hold and hide you from it all. You deserve so much more than the world.  This is how Jesus feels about you too.

If you were able to hear this, and take it deep down into your heart, I’d like to share this letter as my hope for your future. Because you have a daddy up in heaven who writes in design every day about His hopes for your future. Know first and foremost, He has been planning a future of great adventures for you. Oh, and trust me, they’re even cooler Mario or Sonic the Hedgehog video games. Bold adventure, deep affections, and a life of entire fulfillment… He has great things in store for you.

My Saibird

I pray often and hard for you. You are loved with a deep affection. Not because you listen to your mama, mind your manners, or are the sweetest to your baby brother and niece; although those are very admirable qualities in you. You are loved simply because you are you. You, Isaiah Joel, are so special, entirely apart from any thing you do, or do not do.

I pray boldness, and courage for everywhere you go. You were made a warrior. You will be a warrior. Your ability to speak gently to all types of people brings my auntie heart joy. And it will bring your true joy as well. You and kind, you are patient. You are full of hope, and do not hold wrongs against anyone. You are the very definition of Love Christ wants us to show people. You are worthy of life abundant. And there is nothing greater than to hear you giggle a little while.

And I know as your journey goes on, you will begin to see darkness and troubles even more than you already have. The world will bring to you many false gifts. You will know them as false because they will shine, they will sparkle, they will be loud. It’ll feel confusing and will seem to fulfill anything your flesh might desire. These, are false. Wonderful gifts come from a wonderful daddy in Heaven, and they will fulfill the desires of your soul. The will look meek, and humble, and seem potentially ordinary, or utterly unattainable if not for Him. These, are the real gifts in life. I believe the Lord wants to use what you have endured to bring His greatest joys in your future. I believe wholeheartedly this will bring your greatest joys too! There is so much in this world that is His to explore, and I love that we have, we do, and we will continue to explore it together.

My greatest hope, of all hopes Isaiah Joel is this; that you would feel the gentle touch of a loving daddy in heaven reaching out his tattered hands and pointing one solid finger towards that beautifully crafted chin of yours. He is calling for you. Because only you can do what He has created you for. My greatest hope, dearest Isaiah Joel, is that you would walk confidently in this world because of an utter confidence in Christ.

You are so special to me. Thank you for the honor and joy it is to be your Auntie.

Happy Birthday Nephew!