When I was pregnant with S, we talked about having a song or hymn for each of our kids, that would be “theirs.” I wrote before about how we picked S’s, and wanted to share some about how we chose Ellie’s.
Unlike with S, I had lots of ideas for Ellie. “Though He Slay Me,” by Shane and Shane, and “Psalm 42/Satisfied in You” by The Sing Team, though not hymns, were frequently on my mind while I was pregnant. Postpartum I often sang “In Christ Alone,” while putting her to bed, and lines from “Day by Day” came to mind almost every day. But since Ellie’s full name put together kind of means “my hope is in the Lord,” I also felt drawn to the hymn by that name. We talked about it off and on before our move but I could never decide, though by that point it was down to the two traditional hymns.
As we slogged through jet lag and sickness and PPD over the next month it became clearer that “Day by Day” was Ellie’s hymn. It was what I was learning at the time, and is what we can sing when our hope is in the Lord. Two kids is totally different than having one. I feel like with one kid it’s a matter of prioritizing things in your day, but with two it’s constantly juggling and it’s so easy to fret about chores or dinner or how to work all the stories and feeding and cuddles into our day (though it’s so much easier now that daily life doesn’t include moving!). One of the things I really had to learn in the first few weeks of Ellie’s life was not to worry about how the next day would play out or feel guilty about nursing Ellie to sleep again (tomorrow is another day to try independent sleep!).
I chose it as my hymn to memorize for March and it’s still a good reminder for me as we sing it every day of what my response to trials should be, and how I want S and Ellie to know Him well enough that that trust comes easily.
Day by day and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He whose heart is kind beyond all measure
Gives unto each day what He deems best–
Lovingly, its part of pain and pleasure,
Mingling toil with peace and rest.
Ev’ry day the Lord Himself is near me
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear, and cheer me,
He whose name is Counselor and Pow’r.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.
Help me then in eve’ry tribulation
So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation
Offered me within Thy holy Word.
Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,
E’er to take, as from a father’s hand,
One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,
Till I reach the promised land.
P.S. – S’s plaque was tea stained; Ellie’s we did with coffee – MUCH easier, though a different shade.
And above Ellie’s plaque in the girls’ room is this, that I saw the idea from on Pinterest and we did with family and friends before leaving Japan and over the holidays – still missing a few though! We thought the house from Up was fitting for our Ellie.