Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Whole-Hearted Devotion

About a year and a half ago, Andrew and I were camping in the lovely mountains of Montana, brainstorming baby names....not one, but TWO.  It's a good thing we didn't have two girls or they may still remain nameless.

But boys names were easy for us.  We decided very quickly on the name Caleb.

::Whole-hearted, Faithful, Devoted::

I love the description of Caleb we get in the Bible. What an incredible man of God.  When everyone else was shaking in their boots and allowing themselves to be overcome by fear, Caleb faced it head on.  Moses sent out men to explore Canaan and all of them came back saying that while it had delicious food, the land was filled with inhabitants who were much too powerful and cities that were too large. It was Caleb that "silenced the people", saying, (my version), "Seriously, guys, we can do this!"   Caleb and Joshua went on to give a motivational speech in front of the people, reminding them of all that the Lord had already done for them.  Didn't really work.....the people were hardly convinced. Instead they talked about stoning Caleb and Joshua. But God saw what was going on (He always does) and told Moses, (again my own version).."The rest of these yahoos will never see the land I promised them"
Numbers 13:24 "But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land.."  As you read through the whole story, you can't help but see how pleased God was with Caleb and how, in the end,  He rewards him greatly for it.   Caleb had such admirable determination and FAITH in the promises that God had made.

Recently, I've been noticing how much our Caleb's name really suits him.

It all started at the beginning, you know.  This whole-hearted, fearless......shall we say...stubbornness.  The boys were growing right along there inside of me.  Other than some concerns about fluid levels, everything seemed to be going great with their health and development.  I had to go in every Wednesday for fetal monitoring. I'll never forget Wednesday, Sept. 24th.  Baby B (Luke) looked perfect on the ultrasound....did everything the doctor wanted him to do.  But Baby A (Caleb) just wouldn't stop with the hiccups. We waited and waited....and waited some more....till finally the doc decided to have me come back the next day to just check on Baby A, mainly his diaphragm and breathing.

The next day came and without a second thought I went back to fetal monitoring to do just that...check on Baby A.  Instead, it was Baby B that really needed our attention. Overnight, in less than 24 hours, Luke plummeted.  They couldn't find anything other than a movement, no response to stimulus.....nothing.  I was rushed off to Labor and Delivery and the rest, as they say, is history.  We waited a few more hours, then overnight and then on Friday, when we couldn't wait anymore, the doc came in and said, "We're taking them today. We can't wait any longer. Baby B isn't going to make it if we wait."

In 30 minutes flat, the boys were here.  Way too early. I'll always remember thinking, "It's just not time.  It's too early."  

Just as they suspected, Caleb came out breathing and screaming and kicking, but Luke was in major respiratory distress.


Hours later, my OB came in to my room for a chat. "If we had waited any longer,  Luke wouldn't have made it".  "It was the hiccups," I told her.  At a whopping 2 lbs, 11 oz Caleb had already saved his brother's life.  My mind instantly went back to the Wednesday before when we were sitting in fetal monitoring thinking, "That stinker just won't stop.....hiccup, hiccup, hiccup"  If he had, they would have sent me on my way, with an appointment for the following Wednesday....and as the doc said, Luke would never have lasted that long.

We bought the book 'Bringing Up Boys'....a fantastic book, I'm sure. It's sitting on the shelf because 'The Strong-willed Child' has taken priority on my reading list.   Sometimes, I just want to pull my hair out. How could one LITTLE guy have one BIG, STRONG will.  Caleb knows exactly what he wants.  Tears are shed, tantrums are thrown and parents know how it goes.  One thing is for sure, Caleb wanted Luke here and he did his part to make it happen.  I'm grateful.  And prayerful that Andrew and I will do all we can to guide him and shape him.....and discipline every good parent should do. But when those tough toddler moments come and it's a battle of the wills, quietly I'm asking God to help me shape, but never break that strong will.  It will be used for great things one already has. 

Thank God, thank God, thank God for strong-willed hearts!  Where would this world be without "Caleb" hearts?

Our little man has a strong will ((((wrapped up)))) in ooey-gooey sweetness. He is PURE JOY!  He loves giving kisses...sometimes three or four in row.  Right after a sloppy kiss, he'll head butt you, just in case you forgot he is 150% BOY!  He smiles, he claps, he squeals when anything new is learned. It's an adorable expression of satisfaction at what he has just accomplished. He loooves to eat and loves his milk.  He adores his daddy and increasingly wants to be in his arms whenever he gets a chance.   He loves to jump and climb and give high-fives. His new word is "OUCH!" and he uses is often for any tumble or coffee table collision....or head butt.   Caleb loves his cell phone and will "talk" the day away. I wish I knew who he was talking to. :-)  He can't get enough of books. He'll pull out his favorites and scooch his way back, back, back until he's found the perfect spot on your lap and then look up at you with those big eyes as if to say, "Well, let's get reading."

He's into everything!  He is endlessly entertained with the TV remote, pulling all of the wipes out of the container, emptying his drawers,  a kitchen bowl and spoon, mommy's jewelry box, a roll of toilet paper, ripping up my newest Parenting magazine......And, well, much less entertained with the new $30 toy we just got for him.  

He loves to dance.

He wants us to read Go, Dog, Go! (or as he calls it, "Go Ga Go") at least 5 times a day.  Even though there are 20 books on his shelf,  his eyes can easily spot his favorite among all of them.

Caleb LoVeS Luke.....He gently rubs his hand through Luke's hair and leans in to give him a kiss on the cheek.  He'll gladly retrieve Luke's pacifier for him.  And if Luke is in his room sleeping, Caleb will stand at the door and whisper "Shhhh" to me.   But as soon as Luke makes a peep, Caleb is right at my feet as if to say, "He's awake now, Mom. Go get him!"  When Luke babbles, "ba ba ba", Caleb echoes it right back to him. He cheers him on during therapy sessions and cheers him on as he eats his Keto meals.  Luke doesn't know it yet, but his big brother is his BIGGEST fan.

I love you, Caleb.   I am proud so proud of you!  I thank God for giving you to us. I love your tender heart, your enthusiasm, your friendly nature, your sweet smile.  I can't wait to watch you see all that God will make you to be.  I have a feeling whatever it is, you'll be doing it with your  whole heart.


  1. Kristi, this blog gave me goosebumps and brought tears to my eyes. Caleb is so sweet and loving... and pure boy. :-) Thanks for putting into words what many of us parents experience on a daily basis. I love The Strong Willed Child book. Really opened my eyes to what you said: "help me shape, but never break that strong will."

    You are a terrific Momma and those boys are blessed to have you and Andrew as parents.

    Love you,

  2. Beautiful blog about a beautiful boy.

  3. What an awesome tribute to Caleb!

  4. What an AMAZING perspective as a mother! I can see your daddy's heart in you.

  5. what a joy to read. god is good. faithful and has the most amazing plan for BOTH of the boys. can't wait to see with you what the plan is.



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