I bless the girl my son married

Hey, Jovanie~

jovan and rocky and family

Oh, sweet girl, how did almost 3 months pass before I got to this post? Life has been a whirlwind, yes? And YOU had a birthday, and moved a little too far away for my heart – all at once {October 31st}. In the middle of so many good and wonderful gifts from above, a whirlwind of exciting living – we breathlessly paused and celebrated. And thanked God for you, again.

jovan with bailey

As birthday posts go, I have never been later. And this one has been sitting in the drafts folder, not quite finished far too long. But know this, at least: as daughter-in-loves go, there is none more cherished or delightful! And I still thank God for you, birthday or any day and everyday of your life and mine!

I love you, Jovan Marie Rhoades! And I bless the day you were born, born to a future that included marrying Rocky and to giving me three of the most adorable little grand-girlies in the world…so far, anyway! :)

jovan and rocky selfie

We’ve known you for half your life!

It is really strange to imagine our family without you, having known you now since you were 14 years old. And when you came into our lives (fourteen years ago, to be exact), you just fit. You were easy to know, easy to have in the room. You hung out with Stormie, sometimes spending the night at our houses and then got up and did chores, like any of our kids.

Who is this amazing girl, I wondered? I must remember to thank her parents!*

jovan and rocky

I love that his heart is safe with you.

And you befriended Rocky, too. You admired him and respected him and looked up to him ( a whole 2 years older, right?) and I liked how I saw you looking at my son. I thought that Rocky choosing you was one of the greatest things he could ever have done. I still think so. And I love that even before we knew you, during the years you were growing up with your two sisters and godly parents, long before we were ready to think of our only son ever even getting married – you were being equipped to be Rocky’s. God was at work in your heart and life, and he was at work in our son. He alone knew what the two of you could be together, as one. So mysterious and beautiful. It makes me wonder why I ever worried over my kids at all – the way God so carefully orchestrates adventure and life and love and goodness and mercy over you all.

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So, even though I thought I had all the daughters I could handle, with the four incredible beauties I birthed myself, it turns out, getting to have just one more {YOU} has been a blessing of mammoth proportions! You have been a sweetness and grace, a reward to me for getting through the years of raising 5 children! Ha!

I do thank God for you, Jovan. I was so happy to get to tell Averi and Amelie recently, as we were “doing hair and make-up,” what I have told you many times before: I grew up saying I intended to have 8 sons, eight! It sounded fun. But then I had 3 daughters, finally a son and in an attempt to get one more – another daughter! But wow-Rocky was an energetic handful of rambunctious-ness and I later realized I would have fallen dead from exhaustion if I had actually birthed 8 little Rocky-types. Haha. Oh, how I love that little boy and the man he has become for the ways he has challenged me! LOVE him.

So, I was glad to tell your daughters, my cute grandbebes, how delighted I was to find scripture that fit us, you and me, so perfectly. It’s Naomi’s friends talking to her about her devoted daughter-in-law, Ruth:

“And may [your grandchild] be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law, who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has borne [this child].”  Ruth 4

There it is! And I will always be able to tell your children with my whole heart: your mommy, who gave me you, is better to me than seven more sons would have been. So even though I didn’t get the 8 baby boys I always thought I’d have, I got you, and I got a daughter-in-love who has my heart for always.

Averi said, “I’ve heard that story!” And I hope she’ll never forget.

A Birthday Blessing for my Jovan, the world’s best daughter-in-law:

So, today, I bless you. I bless your heart and soul and your thoughts and feelings and hopes and dreams. I bless the family you are building with Rocky and the your days with the  beautiful Presence of God. I pray all you give out will come back to you many times. I bless you with the deep love in marriage and the honor of your children and with the long life that goes so-very-well for you because of how you honor your parents. I bless your days, your hours and minutes – may they be lived fully and colorfully, and may they be fruitful and accomplish much to the glory of God. I pray you will flourish, become deeper rooted, and all your gifting and talents will be received with great fanfare and welcome whenever and wherever they begin to show up. I speak against any enemy lies or assignments on your life and agree for any chain that tries to hold you down to be broken and left in a heap while you go from glory to glory, strength to strength, fully shining like the bright joy you are! Yes! In Jesus’ Name! {{*AMEN.*}}

jovan and rocky with girls

You were born to be one of us, Jovan. My thanks to your parents for raising such a lovely young woman. My thanks to Rocky for having the good sense to make you his standard of beauty and desire, his wife and one flesh. And my thanks to God for His grace on all of us, through you. {mom}

*P.S. Speaking of Jovan’s wonderful parents –

Today is Jo’s birthday! I finally got Jovan’s birthday blessing posted on her mom’s birthday! I mean there would be no Jovan without Jo! Happy Birthday, Jo!

Happy-Birthday-jo

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