A Prayer Book for Our Little Scout

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It’s weird to think about our child to be. He or she could already be conceived at this very moment, or maybe he or she will not BE until next month or even next year.

I am suddenly so aware of how important mine and Dean’s prayers are. Just as a pregnant mother prayers for the child inside her belly, we are praying for our child. It is such a blessing from God that He allows us to be a part of this process through prayer. I have no control over what nourishment or potentially harmful substances pass through the umbilical cord to our child. I have no control over the mind of the expectant mother carrying our child. Our child could be peacefully growing inside his or her mother’s belly while the mother is scared out of her mind and contemplating abortion. Our child could be the source of joy, excitement, or even grief. We have no idea.

But because of these thoughts, Dean and I have gotten into a habit of praying for our child to be. It is really the only thing we can do for our child at this point. They are mostly prayers of thanks and praise to God. I know God is watching over our sweet baby. I know He has great plans for our little one, and so I thank Him in advance for the things I know He is already doing.

Dean and I started planning our fundraiser BBQ with the help of my parents, aunts, and grandma. The idea of a prayer book came up. I mentioned that I wanted a place where people could write prayers for our little one. I thought it would be really cool to pray the prayers that others were praying for our child, and to eventually show our child how many people were praying for him or her. One of my aunts came up with the idea of having a Guest Book at the BBQ but instead of having pages full of well wishes for the happy couple, we (as a community) would fill the book full of prayers for the baby to be.

What a brilliant idea! I started on the project right away, but I ran into some bumps…some baby bumps…badooomchhhh.

I love the guest books they have at weddings now- you know with all those adorable pictures of the couple and then blank pages for people to sign. Dean and I got married before these things became a hit on pinterest and a part of me feels like I may have missed out. But now was my chance!Now-a-days people have tons of adorable pregnancy photo shoots and birth announcements. I used to get super angry about these photo shoots with thoughts like “no one cares about your baby bump!” and “oh good for you, yea, keep pretending like your life is perfect”. The seemingly pristine photos of couples lovingly gazing into each others eyes while dreaming of the life they would provide for their child made me want to vomit with anguish and grief.

Dean and I would never look like this. I would never lay under a tree with my head in his lap looking adorably cute and pregnant. And so, I hated every picture and couple that could do those things. Clearly, I had some major jealousy issues.

But, by the grace of Jesus I have worked through a lot of that jealousy and anger. My groans of grief have turned to sighs of pure joy. My scoffs of jealousy and mean comments for the sake of self preservation have turned into “awwwws” and “wow, she looks beautiful” and “how wonderful!”. All phrases I thought I would never utter without having a child myself and somehow all of these phrases are completely genuine and full of love. Wow, God is good.

With that being said, I was excited that this could be my chance to be adorable and “pregnant” in the form of a baby guest book!

And then I realized that Dean and I don’t even have as much as a sonogram of our child, let a lone a baby bump to take pictures of. There would be no “Bump Ahead” photos for us.We don’t even have a date of when we will be parents so even the adorable shoes photos wouldn’t work in our case.

The only proof we have of the existence of our child is the faith that God has given us. And although that faith is an amazing gift and something I wouldn’t trade for the world, that can’t be an adorable statement accompanied with a picture, right?Announcement Joke

Anouncement Joke 2

Naturally, I went to pinterest, “there has to be some stuff out there for adoptive parents.” There were a great deal of adoptive parent “pregnancy” announcement photoshoots, most of them adorable and heartfelt and some of them were even cuter than the baby bump pictures.

However, I couldn’t imagine putting Dean through that. Dean is loving, fun, excited, and is going to be a great dad, but put him in front of a camera and tell him to be those things and the pictures just get…well…awkward and weird. I would love to do a photo shoot, but honestly I’m not sure if we could lovingly looking into each other’s eyes while holding a chalkboard that says “growing in our hearts” or frolicking in a field of wildflowers together with a heart shaped balloon and a caption stating, “we can’t wait to meet you!”

Those photo shoots are adorable and corny (things I love) but I’m not sure we could pull it off. We’ve tried to be loving and cute, but it just doesn’t happen for us. We both get really uncomfortable and then we just end up looking bug eyed and crazy. IMG_1487

1560738_243613735813206_1788071305_nPlus, I wanted our book to be about the baby and the people praying for the baby. As much as I wanted those pictures, we didn’t NEED a ton of pictures of me and Dean in that book.

I needed a completely new idea that would be equal parts cute and meaningful without too much Dean and Liz and with absolutely no bug eyes and no crazy.

I decided I wanted to make a children’s book of prayers that we could read to our little Scout (Scout is our nickname for our baby to be; “it” just sounds harsh and unfeeling). I wanted the book to be a story but also filled with prayers. I searched the internet for a cute “Adoption Poem”.  What I found was extremely disappointing; the majority of poems were written by adopted children wondering why their birth parents entrusted them into someone else’s care.They were poems from a place of hurt; something I would probably have to consider down the road, but now was not the time. I was frustrated that there was nothing out there, nothing I could find anyway.

But then, the next morning, as I was spending time with God, verses just started flowing. And in about 15 minutes I had written exactly what I had spent hours looking for.

I then found a themed photobook on shutterfly with tons of animal stickers that I could use to illustrate the book. I included the poem I had written and separated the different stanzas with blank pages that would later be filled with prayers written by our friends and family. I’m not going to lie, I am pretty pumped about how amazing it turned out: IMG_2992        IMG_2993 IMG_2994

The Little house was humming,

with news of your coming,

so, Mommy and Daddy stopped everything to pray.

God was creating,

after years of waiting,

and Mommy and Daddy said their prayers,

Prayers for you…IMG_2995IMG_2996

To their families they went sharing,

and their families were so caring,

that the whole family stopped everything to pray.

God was creating,

after years of waiting,

and Mommy and Daddy and their whole family said their prayers,

Prayers for you…

IMG_2997IMG_2998

To their friends they went telling,

and with eyes that were welling,

all their friends stopped everything to pray.

God was creating,

after years of waiting,

and Mommy and Daddy, their whole family, and all their friends said their prayers,

Prayers for you…

IMG_2999IMG_3001

To church they went rejoicing,

to praise the God that was voicing,

that soon they would finally be meeting you.

God was creating,

after years of waiting,

and Mommy and Daddy, their whole family, all their friends, and the church said their prayers,

Prayers for you…

IMG_3002IMG_3003

The forest was humming,

with news of your coming

and everyone stopped everything to pray…

God was creating,

after years of waiting,

and Mommy and Daddy, their whole family, all their friends, the church, and the whole forest said their prayers…

Prayers for you!

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(the actual book includes a lot more blank pages for prayers, but I was too lazy to take pictures of them all…)