My precious Elena Grace—
Your grandmother and I drove to Chicago last Friday, so we could be there when you were born.
You didn’t come until early Saturday afternoon, but that’s OK. There are some things babies probably know better than adults, and when to be born is one of them.
It was a long wait though, especially for your mom who was in labor over 36 hours. In fact, she and your dad had been waiting for you for nine months.
But by the time you arrived you were already you. I knew your name. I even knew your stuffed llama’s name, Cocalo. He was sitting on the bedside table when I first entered the hospital room where your father cradled you in his arms.
Your parents are serious, thoughtful people and they have thought, talked and prayed about little else besides you for months. You are blessed in this. You will soon find that you are blessed in many things, including, I hope, grandparents you call Santa and Lady.
Lady and I waited all night in the waiting room, with your aunt Melissa and your other grandfather, your Papi. (I hope by the time you ever have to sit up in a waiting room it will be much more comfortable.)
Your other grandmother, Mama, was with you when you were born. She and your dad hugged each other and your mom, weeping for joy. I will never forget the way she glowed when she first held you.
In fact, there was a lot of glowing and rejoicing, the first of what I hope will be many celebrations of your birth. It was a moment worth waiting for. The most important celebrations seem spontaneous but are almost always planned for.
And waited for. Especially prayed for. People you will never know were praying for you.
My own prayer is that you will become a woman with the “imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”
This will take time. And a little discomfort, of which hospital waiting rooms, and hours of labor, and months of planning are merely shadows.
But no great beauty is an accident. You will have to work at this and pray for this. We all will. But like “the holy women of old,” you yourself must “hope in God” and “do not fear anything that is frightening (I Peter 3:4-6).”
This is the work of a lifetime.
So don’t be impatient. I won’t be. I know my role. Your parents and grandparents are all prepared to do theirs. Frankly, God himself will do most of the work. If you are willing.
So together we will wait for His grace to be understood and his glory to be revealed.
It is already begun.