Today’s Reading: 2 Timothy 1:4-6 NIV
4Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. 5I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. 6For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.
Isaiah 26:3 KJV
3Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
My mother has given me some very special gifts through the years, and none of them were purchased at the store. Oh, she loved to shop and buy our family beautiful things we have enjoyed through the years, but those monetary gifts pale in comparison to the quality gifts we’ve received: her time and talents, incredibly funny moments and her daily sense of humor. I think often about the sweet inner peace she possesses, and I know from whom she receives it. That, in and of itself, is a timeless and precious gift.
Yesterday, Mom and I stopped at our local Walgreens® to purchase a few things on our way home from the doctor’s office. I picked up a hair net for Mom to use at night. Every week, she visits my friend Sammi, who works at a hair salon not far from our home. Sammi does an amazing job making my mother look beautiful. She washes and rolls her hair, teases and sprays it just so, hoping it will last her through the weekend, especially for worship. Mom spends a lot of time during the day cat napping, and, quite often, her hair gets messed up while she sleeps.
Last night, Mom went to put on the hair net and accidentally picked up her arm sling instead. Without her glasses, Mom could not figure out how to apply the hair net “sling” to her head. She worked on it for quite some time before finally giving up and going to bed. This morning, she told me how disgusted she was with her brand new hairnet. I believe she used the term “worthless” as she shook the arm sling in her fist, demanding I take it back to the store for a full refund. I tried hard not to laugh at her as I walked back to the bedroom and picked up the hairnet on her changing table. “Is this what you tried to put on?” I asked. “No! I thought that was my underwear!” she quickly replied. A moment of dark confusion crossed her face before she burst into hysterical laughter. “I do hope you are writing all this down, dear,” she said, looking at me through a teary grin. I told her not to worry, I had it covered. We sat together at the breakfast table, laughing over the arm sling/hairnet story. Mom’s ability to laugh over something that might have otherwise terribly upset her is a gift from God above. She knows that life is very confusing right now and yet, she handles every situation with grace and dignity. It makes me realize just how beautiful she is inside and out, and how someday, I hope to be just like her.
Mom’s sincere faith has now become the faith I hold. She has faced many difficult moments with the quiet confidence of Mary, who chose to ponder all things in her heart. Mom worked hard like Martha, and sat at the feet of the Master, listening carefully, like Mary. She loved to sew like Priscilla, and was once the finest cook in our neighborhood, just like Lydia. She learned life lessons well from her own mother and grandmother, and all these things she has passed down to my sister and to me. In the twilight of her life, Mom has bloomed into the unique, fragrant perennial the Lord created her to be. Even in sheer moments of confusion, Mom knows that her Redeemer lives! Jesus gives her the courage and strength to master every moment with a smile. And Mom knows she does not face tomorrow alone.
You may be missing your Mom today. Maybe you never got to know your mother and you wonder what her life had been like. Maybe your childhood memories are not so pleasant. There are no perfect families in this world, and all of us struggle with experiences and painful memories we would like to somehow wipe out away. Regardless of your situation, make time today to think about and honor a woman who has invested her life in you, whether she is your birth mother, an adopted mother, or simply a great friend. Take time to thank the Lord for her character and love, for it is that gift which draws us closer to each other and to Christ. We can learn much from looking closely at a mother’s heart.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.
Grace and peace,
Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO
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