I am delighted to announce the arrival of our daughter, Ivy Joy, born on Good Friday!
What follows is a blessing I scribbled out on the back of a piece of paper one night a few weeks before she was born. We didn't know whether we were having a boy or a girl, but I had an inkling that I carried a girl. And I had more than an inkling that this baby was somehow connected to all I have been discovering about joy. Her very name is part of my blessing to her, and God's blessing to me. "Ivy" stands for faithfulness, and "Joy," well, it speaks for itself!
I speak joy over your coming.
Joy as you grow, and bloom to bursting,
Joy as you waken to life in the wide world,
Joy as you are received into the arms of your family,
And joy as our Father laughs to behold His reflection in your eyes.
I speak joy over our meeting.
Joy as we weave our bonds of love,
Joy as we learn each other’s names,
Joy through the sleepless nights,
And joy as we count each sunrise together.
I speak joy over your future.
The wonder-filled joy of discovery,
The riotous joy of whole hearted freedom,
The steadfast joy of a deep-held faithfulness,
And the fiercely won joy of the sorrowful night.
I speak joy over you.
Unspeakable and full of glory,
Fruit of the presence of God,
Fire bright and blazing beauty,
The strength of a hundred hind’s feet on the heights.
I speak joy as my mother’s blessing,
A gift of words and of heart’s desire,
A beseeching prayer for divine bestowal,
A promise kindled by heaven’s purpose,
And my song of praise overflowing.