You entrusted me with Gabby, and you know her inside and out. There was no mystery hidden from you when you wove her inside of me, fearfully and wonderfully made (Ps. 139).
Thank you for Gabby. Thank you for all that she has already been to us–a daughter, a sister, a friend. Thank you for her sweet disposition, her goofy laugh, and her determination to go places as of yet uncharted by babies (probably for good reasons). Thank you for using my relationship with her for my sanctification and your glory in my life.
Thank you for the moments we’ve shared already. For ever hour I’ve worked from home while snuggling her, for all the “firsts” we’ve witnessed (words, crawling, standing, steps, and more!). For even the many sleepless nights we’ve soldiered through this year, holding our precious child, I am so thankful.
There are so many things I want for my daughter, God. It seems like a lot to ask, especially considering that Gabby is, by virtue of her birth, more privileged than many children of the world. But these are, I think, the things that all children, all people, need and deserve. And I believe no request is too big or small for you.
Let her know her strength, God. As her name, “Gabrielle,” implies, the source of all her strength is you, and so, even when her mortal flesh is failing, she can fall upon the Rock that is Christ and let his arms hold her. Let her know that, regardless of size or social status or office, she is great through the power that raised Jesus from the dead (Rom. 8:11).
Let her know her beauty, God. It’s more than clear to me that my daughter is beautiful on the inside and the outside, too, but sometimes distortions can start to feel like reality . Let her know that she is created in your image, and that any messages contrary to that are flat-out lies (Gen. 1:27).
Let her find family, God. I believe that one of the worst things we can do is walk through life alone–or believe that we are alone. I trust that our family, our immediate family, will always be there for her, but I want her also to find “chosen family”–the people she can call at 3 AM on a Thursday night just because she needs a chat.
Help her be brave, God. Let her be a person who sits by the one everyone else is leaving out. Let her be a person who speaks out of principle, not popularity. Let her fearlessly tell of who she is and why her story matters.
Let her be heard and seen, God, for who she really is. Remove the sicknesses of racism and sexism that have poisoned so many and kept them from witnessing the truth of those who are like my child.
And while she’s doing all that, being strong and beautiful and known and brave and heard and seen, just keep her safe, God. We do not live in a safe country for children, especially not ones like Gabby. I worry for her with a mother’s heart, and yet I trust you, God.
In your powerful, strong name–which Gabby carries in her own name, in the fabric of her being–I pray.