Birthday Week

It’s birthday week at the Schulenburg home. 14 years ago today, Cyndi and I were at a homecoming football game at Williams Stadium in Lynchburg, Virginia. We were expecting our first child any day. That night, Cyndi began to go into labor, and on November 1st, our beautiful Breanna was born. Our lives have never been the same! The moment I saw Breanna, I was instantly in love. She is so precious. 14 years later, I consider myself the most blessed dad in the world. How did I get so lucky? Breanna, I love you. God, thanks for the gift of my girl, Breanna.

It was 12 years ago today that Cyndi went to the doctor and was told to go straight to the hospital. She was ready to have baby number two. Cyndi disobeyed doctors orders, wnet home, got her bag, called me and said, “Let’s go have a baby.” Then Christopher was born. Instant love again. I had a boy! It was hard not to project my feelings of baseball and basketball superstardom on to him from the time he was a baby. Now, hundreds of video games and baseball games later, I have to admit that God has really, really blessed me. Chris, I love you. God, thanks for the gift of my son, Chris.

Eight years ago, Cyndi was starting to feel labor pains. She said, “There is no way I’m having baby number three on either of his siblings birthdays.” So, somehow, Cyndi delayed labor for two days, and on November 2nd, Jeremy was born. We had lost a child in between Chris and Jeremy, and so when he was born we named him, Jeremy, which means, Appointed by Jehovah. We knew that God has something special planned for Jeremy, because had his brother been born, Jeremy wouldn’t have been here. Jeremy was born, and instant love once again swelled from my bones. I love that boy. I love his smile that lights up any room he walks into. I love his contagious belly laugh. I love his passion for life. Jeremy, I love you. God, thanks for the gift of my son, Jeremy.

I could have never imagined how much my life would change in the past 14 years because of these gifts that God has brought my way. Zachary, our youngest is five. His birthday is in May. For the past few years he’s wondered why he doesn’t get gifts this week like the rest of his siblings. This week, he’s been finding gifts from his room for his brothers and sister. He’s learning that it’s better to give than to receive. One of these days, I’m going to have to give my children away. Psalm 127:4-5 says, “Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their enemies in the gate.” God, you’ve given me an incredible gift in my four children, but they are not mine to keep. Lord, use Breanna, Chris, Jeremy and Zach for your glory and honor. Let them be a light in their generation. Keep them close to you. Help Cyndi and me to be godly role models and to trust them to your tender care. As we give them birthday gifts this year, let our greatest gift be a passion for you that we share together.