Monday, November 5, 2007

The Dedication of Reagan Abbott

After the birth of our firstborn, our lives were in transition. We made a move, changed gears, and sort of started over. Part of that move involved attending a brand new, rather large congregation where we knew no one. Other than my parents, that is! We wanted to dedicate Lauren, of course, but the thought of the traditional method...walking down a long aisle on a Sunday morning...and standing before strangers or acquaintances, didn't really appeal to Derek or me. So we formed a plan, and ended up being SO thrilled with the results, that it has been our tradition with the arrival of each precious bundle. Something we look forward to almost as soon as we know they're coming!

To give you an idea of what it's like, it goes something like this: we gather at the church with family and any friends and church family that can come on a Saturday morning at 11:00. It's always been an intimate setting, where we can share personal thoughts and reflections unique to that child. Derek has written songs for a couple of them that were so beautiful and meaningful. For Lauren's, I sang the song "Masterpiece" (by Sandi Patty), and my sister did the sign language for it, which was so special. At Sophie's my dad read "Just in Case You Ever Wonder" by Max Lucado. We always share something about the baby's name...how we chose it, what it means, etc. Both mine and Derek's dads always have a part, and then the Pastor speaks a word of instruction and lifts the baby in dedication. We have a simple but yummy luncheon in the fellowship hall which we always look forward to. Each service has been wonderful, meaningful, and stored away in our hearts forever.

Reagan's dedication was Saturday. (and for my long-term readers...yes, he wore the gown. what else could I do?) It was no exception: in fact, it was a very special time for our families, both sides combined. My dad opened with words of welcome, and shared some thoughts from Proverbs 17:6 on the joys of being a grandparent. My Papaw had the invocation, after sharing thoughts on what he prays for Reagan's future. Then Lauren, Cameron, and Sophie sang "God Made You Special", which was just too cute! Derek's dad had a very touching time of speaking of the generations of men in their family, and the blessing that God promises to the 1000th generation of those that love him. He vowed to re-dedicate himself so that promise may be true of our family. Then Derek sang that beautiful Mark Harris song, "Find Your Wings"; after which he shared with everyone the choosing of Reagan's name. Our Pastor offered Reagan up to the Lord in dedication. Scott H, closed with the benediction. There were a lot of wet eyes as we dismissed. So grateful to God for the gift of another son to raise for Him. And so thankful that in that moment we were surrounded by family who love us and love God and seek to help us in that endeavor. I guess it's something we could easily take for granted, having never known another way. But how blessed we are for our Christian heritage!!!


For those interested, here is what Derek shared about Reagan's name:




The Choosing of Reagan’s Name

"Choosing a name for our children has always been something we approached with great thought and consideration. We search for names with deeper meaning, family connection, or historical value. Upon learning that we would be welcoming our second son into this world, we began that process once again. We live in a time now where leadership and biblical manhood are at a premium. Our nation and our world search for the rare, priceless gem of a leader who will never abandon his convictions and will never fail to lead. This country has known many fine and honorable Presidents. But in my lifetime, there has been none so great as our 40th President, Ronald Wilson Reagan. He has left behind a legacy of unwavering courage, unfailing optimism, and unshakable convictions. As my son grows older, I want to point him to values like those. I want to be an example like that for him, and I want to point him to other men who have lived out principles such as these. I can proudly point him to the man whose name he shares…and urge him to treat his name with honor and pride.

But our Reagan is blessed to not only search the historical record for examples of greatness…he has many men in his own family that he can look to for a witness of godliness and leadership. There are examples in his extended family, and in his church family. When we found the Hebrew name, “Abbott”, meaning ‘father’, we felt this was a way for both Tara and I to honor our own fathers for the relationships that we have with them. Reagan will always know why he was given this middle name. He will always know the way his parents feel about the men for whom this name was chosen. It is our hope that he will recognize the importance of keeping the family connection strong, and the heritage passed down in good faith, and with honor.

Both of these names represent strength and greatness, perhaps a little much for such little shoes to fill. But we believe that with God’s help, and by virtue of this dedication that we make today, that our precious little Reagan Abbott H****** can grow into a true man of God, and a warrior for His kingdom."

Here are some pictures from this Saturday. Maybe sometime in the future I will post some from the other childrens' dedications. It was SO precious to have had some of our closest friends attend these in years past. Before we spread out quite so far, and they started having babies of their own! Wish you all could have been there this weekend! Thanks for letting me share the significance of this on my blog; I know it went a little long in the description, but I've decided to start saving these entries as sort of a "journal", and that way, I write it once and it's done! Blessings, friends...............












































Oh, yes...one more thing...President Reagan once said, "You can tell a lot about the character of a person by his way of eating jelly beans." So, in honor of that, we had to put out a bowl for everyone to enjoy!

19 comments:

kayla said...

Sounds like it was a beautiful ceremony, wish I could have been there. The outfit looked adorable on him despite the doubts. What a precious little bundle.
I also really enjoyed the pics. Your extended family is really growing.

Leah said...

Hi Tara,
So nice to see you a couple of weeks ago! I enjoyed seeing your adorable kids.
Your idea for baby dedications is very neat! It was great to see the pics of the family.

Tara said...

Kayla: I wish you could have been here, too! It was special to have you and your two boys(at the time!) here for Cameron's dedication.

Leah: I enjoyed seeing you too, although way too short! Good for you, starting a blog of your own! Will be great to keep in touch.

Making Memories 1999 said...

Thanks so much for sharing about your precious son's special day. Great pictures! (And I love the jelly bean idea. Neat!)

Kim M. said...

I really enjoyed seeing the dedication pictures and all the creative things y'all did to make it special.

Derek Hickman said...

Good blogs! I caught up on the last three you posted. My head's a little swollen after looking at those pics!

I guess I'm a wee bit proud . . .

jenny said...

Oh Tara! That is such a beautiful tradition. What a special time for your families. I can see all the work you put into stressing to your entire family what a momentous occasion this is.

I love the jelly bean quote and kept hearing Reagan's final "city on a hill" speech for some reason while I was reading... :-)

jenny said...

meant to say I love the jelly bean BOWL

btw...do you know Reagan was partly responsible for the jelly belly success...he brought them from CA to the White House and launched their national campaign (the factory tour is in our town...you should come visist)!

~Heather~ said...

Tara, what a beautiful celebration and how handsome and precious little Reagan looked. Memories like these last a life time!

Love, Heather and baby! =)

Sonja said...

What a special time! I'm so glad that you all were able to have your families around you and make such beautiful memories. Wish I could have been there. What an incredible legacy you are leaving to your children. They are indeed blessed!

Liz said...

What a unique and wonderful way of dedicating your little one! God bless!! Such cute pictures!!

David and Sarah Fry said...

I was feeling kindof anxious for our own 4th addition - some day - after just briefly looking at your pics of the day. But after reading your description, I'm even more anxious! What great ideas. Our name meanings are very important to us, too, but don't usually get to share more than a brief mention of it on our baby announcements. Your ideas have got me thinking...

I enjoyed reading.

Juwah said...

Wish we could have made it for the dedication. He's such a sweet baby. Sounds like a lovely service.

julie f said...

Tara ~

I know I am late, but just wanted to say that I greatly enjoyed hearing about how you make the baby dedications so special and meaningful. There is something very different about an intimate setting, verses the whole church. We always have my dad dedicate the babies in his little church in Montana and it is so meaningful, but we have also done the whole church thing for all the kids in our BIG home church so that the church body has participation in our little person's spiritual life.

Everything looked beautiful, including the mom of four!

PS This post got me to thinking...do both sets of parents now live outside of Florida? It was fun to see pictures of Scott...how well I remember Quartet tour. I think he was bored to death, but always so sweet!

Queen Essie said...

Sounds like you had a lovely, blessed time. I enjoyed seeing the pictures and celebrating from afar with your family! You had lots of neat ideas. What a great tradition to have and pass on to your children.

Tara said...

Thank you so much, friends, for your kinds comments! I'm so glad that you enjoyed sharing one of our special traditions with us. It's one of those "decisions born of necessity" that I am eternally grateful for.
And, to answer Julie's question, we live in the same town with my family, and Derek's family left FL two years ago to move to Indy. So they're much closer to us now, which is nice. But it was sad to lose our last "family" connection to FL...always nice to have a free place to crash there, ya know?!?

Anita D said...

Congrats on the dedication. I enjoyed seeing pictures of the family. I'm back among the blogesphere with updates from our family reunion.

Kimberly said...

Enjoyed hearing about this special event...and enjoyed being at the 1st two...ya'll do it so well!
Thanks for thinkin of me while I was gone...Love to all!

Kelly S said...

What a special time! I enjoyed seeing all the pictures. What a good girl you are to let him wear the outfit! That took a lot of self denial I'm sure. God will bless you for it:)