Before my children were born, I prayed that God would bless them each with a special gift. I also prayed that God would give them tender hearts towards God and other people. As I see Christian and Audra grow, I'm realizing that God is answering those prayers! They both LOVE good music! Christian's rhythm is almost perfect even at the age of two, and he can pick out by ear and name several instruments on an orchestra CD. He also can sense the difference between good and bad music, and he very matter of factly lets everyone present know!
I've also seen the other prayer answered. Christian has one of the most tender hearts towards anything or anyone hurting that I ever seen! Especially for one of his age. If he hears anyone crying, he goes to them and tries to comfort them. If I stub my toe, and of course you have to hop around groaning. It always helps, right? :) He'll come running and begin patting me, or giving me big hugs telling me it'll be ok. :) The other day I wasn't feeling well and was sitting on the floor near my bed trying to get the courage to face the day. He came into the room, his face immediately changed to great concern when he saw me, and he rushed over to me. Christian put both arms around my neck, patting my back, and looked tenderly into my eyes, asking if I was sick. I noticed his eyes searching my face, and when he saw a little red mark on my forehead, he gently touched it and said, "Its okay, Mama, it will heal." Then he felt my forehead with his hand like you do when you're checking for a temperature and said, "Mama, your head is hot!" Then he pulled my head to his shoulder and began rocking and patting my back, saying, "Its okay, Mama, it will heal. It'll be okay." I wanted to cry. It was adorable to begin with, but I also realized that God had indeed given him a gentle and tender heart. Later that evening, he and Andy were wrestling and playing together. Christian swung an hard object and hit Andy in the side of the head. Andy's first response was PAIN! He howled and told Christian, "NO, Buddy, you don't hit people in the head with things!" He wasn't mad, but he did want to make it very clear that Christian had hurt him and that swinging things at people's head was a big No No. Christian began howling then as he watched Andy holding the spot on the side of his head. Christian then ran into the kitchen to where I was. I hadn't seen what had happened, so I hugged him trying to calm him down. When he finally began to settle down, I asked him what he had done. The loud howling began again full force. He was terribly grieved! Andy came into the room and held him telling him that his head was okay now, but that you don't do things like that to people, even during play time. When Christian saw that his daddy was okay again, he calmed down and they went back to playing.
I've seen Christian many times, go over to Audra, wrap his arms around her and give her a gentle hug, then take off again to do whatever he'd been doing. If she's crying, he'll do everything in his power to find something to make her happy again. He's so gentle!
His tender heart is not only towards people, though. Many times when he's being bad and not wanting to obey, I'll set him on my lap and we'll have a talk. I'll tell him that we were created to please God. I'll remind him that his job is to obey his parents and that in doing so, he's pleasing God. But when he disobeys, it not only makes Mama and Daddy sad, but it must break the Lord's heart as well. We need to please the Lord, and make him happy with us every day. It tears Christian up that he not only displeased his parents, but that he also displeased the Lord. He can't stand knowing that God is not happy with him and his behavior. We pray and ask God to help him be a good boy, and I normally have no more trouble out of him for quite a while. He wants to please so badly!
I've also seen this in my 10 month old daughter as well. She can't stand it if you scold her! When she's heading towards something she's not to touch, one firm "NO!" is pretty much all it takes and she'll turn and crawl away in search of something else that is acceptable. She started spitting her food out making a huge mess on herself and her high chair tray. I didn't want that habit to develop, so every time she tries is, she gets a firm "NO!" and I let her know that I'm very displeased. Her little face puckers up, real tears will begin flowing, and its all I can do to get her calmed down again so she can finish her meal. :) It normally is the last "trouble" for the rest of the meal. Even she, at such a young age loves to please and it tears her up if she gets even mildly scolded for something.
Yes, God has answered my prayers. I pray that Christian and Audra too will grow to love God with their whole hearts, and strive to please Him in every area of their lives. Many young people and children today don't care who they hurt, or who they displease as long at it benefits them. I want Christian to realize that "people are more important than things". I want him to care about people. And its not "sissy" for a boy to be gentle. My son is VERY much a boy who loves dirt, trucks, and animals! But sometimes, being gentle, being last, and being able to stand alone when making a choice to do right takes the stronger man. And its more important to be strong on the inside. "Man looketh on the outward appearance, but God looketh on the heart." I want him to learn that being first isn't always best place to be. There are also special benefits to being last, to being a servant. And there are ALWAYS benefits to pleasing God.
I pray that God will used my children for His glory in His service.