“I do.” Two simple words that hold such deep meaning. Almost 13 years ago I said, “I do” to my husband. When I said those words I didn’t know how much weight those words held. “I Do” is meant to be carried through the good times, the bad times, the wealthy times and the times when we are in need. “I Do” is commitment. “I Do” is for life.
A Different I Do
Thirteen years ago I didn’t realize that I would have 4 more chances to say “I do.” I didn’t realize there would be another situation when I would have to think about those two words and make a commitment that lasts until the day that I die. The next time I had to say “I Do” was 9 and half years ago when our first daughter was born. As I held my beautiful, perfect, little daughter I realized what a great responsibility I had just been given. It was as if God was saying again: “Do you, Dana?”
In Deuteronomy 6:5-9 it says, “And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. ”
When I chose to have each of my four children, I chose to say “I do. I commit to raising my children in the ways of the Lord.” A few weeks ago we had the privilege of attending the dedication of my niece and nephew. The children’s director had the parents make a verbal commitment. Here it is…
“Today we make a commitment to teach our child about Jesus, His Word and His love for all. We lead by example, as we understand we are the primary influence in our child’s life. What we do and who we are matter as we help our child develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.”
These words have meaning; they are important. I pray that I will live these words out to the best of my ability. I pray that my children will have a deep understanding of who God is, of who they are in Christ, and how they are to interact with God and with others. I do commit to trying my best to accomplish this.
The Next I Do
And there is one more “I do.” Last night, I had a wonderful opportunity to meet with one of my mentors. We talked about a lot of different things, but she made one comment that has stayed very close to my heart for the last 24 hours. She pointed out to me the importance of praying for your child’s spouse…today, even when they are young. Sure, I knew that was a good idea. I have randomly and infrequently prayed for their future spouses. I have prayed that they would complement my children’s personalities, and also be able to help them become all that God created them to be. But I have never thought about praying for the childhoods of my future daughters-in-law and sons-in-law. If I would have really thought about it, I would have realized the importance of this “I do.” It is in your childhood that you shape you view of the world, of God, of family and of other. It is in your childhood that you build your foundation. Wounds that occur in your childhood seem to stick with you longer and cause you to form incorrect beliefs and habits since you aren’t mature enough to know any different. Isn’t this the most important time for us to be on our knees? Just like we do for our own child, we should be praying for the heart, mind and soul of their future spouse.
Here is a printable of the prayer we are praying over our children’s future spouses: | Prayer For Our Kids’ Future Spouses |
- I do commit to loving and respecting my husband no matter what.
- I do commit to raising my children up in the Lord. To teach them what it means to love the Lord with all their heart, soul, mind and strength and to love others as themselves.
- I do commit to praying for my future sons and daughters-in-law. That their hearts, minds, and soul would be protected and that they would have a deep understanding of who they are in Christ and what they can accomplish for Him.
Marriage is amazing, and marriage is hard. Moms – these 3 “I Do’s” demonstrate our commitment to living out our purpose for this generation and the next. Do you commit?