We have seen Kutless, 7th Time Down, Chris Tomlin with guests Matt Redman, Matt Maher, Phil Wickham, Tasha Cobbs, Kim Walker-Smith, and pastors Louie Giglio and Max Lucado. We have been to the Hillsong movie, Let Hope Rise, and we have heard Franklin Graham preach. Now we have added Francesca Battistelli and Lauren Daigle to that ever growing list. This event officially ended the celebration of Grace's 16th birthday.
Back when she was just a little girl, just five years old, we were in the city to see the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center and look at the window displays on 5th Avenue. She was in awe of the city, just as she still is now. Her eyes were full of delight and wonder as she craned her little neck to see to the top of Rockefeller Center. I told her that once upon a time I went to a Christmas party there, at The Rainbow Room, and it was magical. She asked when she could go and I promised her we would go as a family when she turned 16.
Sixteen year old Grace is quite different than five year old Grace. She does not like fancy restaurants, she prefers down home barbecue served on paper plates under a tarp at a picnic table. She likes jeans and Converse sneakers. Her hair is always down and she detests makeup. She is the most authentic teen I know and I love her for it. Rather than make her adhere to a dress code and eat food she would rather not eat, we came up with a plan B for her birthday, to see Francesca and Lauren at Carnegie Hall.
This is Grace. Grace is a musician and her love of the Christian music genre is matched by Lilah's love for it, and mine as well. There is nothing quite like an entire audience singing Amazing Grace at one of the most iconic music venues in the world. That moment was perfect. That moment was spirit led and holy. It was beautiful beyond imagination. It ranks with the entire audience of Madison Square Garden getting on our knees and reciting The Lord's Prayer in unison.
16 was a special birthday for Grace. It was so much more than just a day. It was a true celebration of her life and how special she is to so many people.