29 Things to Love about Lila
Your name. I know I wrote about this last year, but your name is still one of my favorite things about you. I love the way you said it when you first started talking: Yi-ya. I love the way you say it now. I love it when you say your first and middle name: Lila Doshee (Lila Josie) or Lila Dosepeen (Josephine).
The other day you were showing off for Camille's mommy and got a little too silly. You were standing up on the chair and then jumping down onto your bottom. I told you to sit on your bottom several times and when you didn't obey I said, more sternly, "Lila Josephine! Sit on your bottom, that is not safe!" and you mimicked me, "Lila Dosepeen, dat not safe!" The sound of you calling yourself sternly by your first and middle name was too much for me and I looked at Holly (Camille's mommy) with my eyes wide and we both cracked up. Which, I'll admit, did nothing to discourage your antics.
But aside from how cute you sound when you say your name, what I really love about your name is what it means. Your name speaks to who you are - your true identity. Your name means "you are mine" and because of that meaning, we have chosen a Bible verse to teach you and pray over you each night that gives depth to that meaning. Isaiah 43:1-3 (the punctuation might be - and probably is - off in the following, but I'm typing from memory so forgive me):
But now, O Jacob, Listen to the Lord who created you.
Oh Israel, the One who formed you says,
"Do not be afraid! For I have ransomed you!
I have called you by name, you are mine!
When you go through deep waters, I will be with you!
When you go through rivers of difficulty you will not drown!
When you walk through the fire of oppression
you will not be burnt up, the flames will not consume you!
For I am the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior."
We say this verse to you each night and several months ago, you started saying some of it with me. My hope all along has been that you would know it by heart because we have said it to you so many times, but it never occurred to me that you would learn it so young! Of course, you don't know what many of the words mean, but I hope what stands out to you are the words that do mean something to you: Don't be afraid! You are mine! I will be with you! And then as you grow up and feel like you might drown in your teenage angst, I hope you remember When you go through rivers of difficulty you will not drown! And when you wade through the deep waters of moral dilemmas (be they boyfriend or work or school or friend related), I hope you remember When you go through deep waters, I will be with you! And when you feel persecuted or treated unjustly; when you feel as though no one is on your side, I hope you remember When you walk through the fire of oppression you will not be burnt up, the flames will not consume you! And above all, I hope you remember and grow to understand and believe that the Lord, the Holy One, formed you, ransomed you, called you, saved you, and says you are His. And that is no small thing.