It’s Mother’s Day. For most, it is a day of family, joy, cookouts and other types of celebrating. We remember our mothers who may not be with us any longer, or we take some time to reach out to our mothers who we do not get to see very often. We blow up our social media to post our well wishes to others or put pictures of our families for all to see how happy we are. To those of you I offer this, don’t take this day or any other day for granted for you do not know what tomorrow will bring. When you look at your mother and your entire family, do it in sincerity and true love.
A mother is someone who devotes her life to her children and family. She wakes each morning with the plan to make that day bright for those closest to her. She knows about the big test her oldest might have that day, or the big game that is coming up in the week. She makes time to keep each day as orderly as possible, to make sure the children are where they need to go and that her family is fed, clothed, warm and loved. Her arms are always open to embrace her young ones, no matter how old they are. She gives them her undivided attention when they need her ear. She corrects them the best she knows how when she observes them heading in the wrong direction and empathizes when they have broken hearts.
A mother stays awake until every member of her family is safe at home, even when she’s supposedly sleeping. She answers the phone in the middle of the night when they call needing her help. She holds their heads when they are too sick to hold themselves. A mother is there, no matter the circumstances, no matter the weather, she is loyal, she is fiercely protective and she will never stop loving, all the way to her deathbed.
There are some mothers who have the perfect children who have done everything right and give their mothers bragging rights. But most mothers have children who make mistakes. They aren’t the most popular in school. They may hang around the wrong crowd. They may not be the most attractive people in town, or the most successful. They may be in trouble. Does this mean their mothers don’t love them just as fiercely? No. This is when mothers do what only they can do.
They stand with their children in support and pray for them every moment of every day. They hold open the door to their home and their heart even when all other doors have been shut. They welcome their prodigals with love and forgiveness. They know they have done the best they can and trust God to complete the work. They fight through the doubts and fears and remain as steadfast as they can to encourage and support their children.
Then, there are the mothers who have only the memory of being mothers. These are the mothers who have been through the war of emotions that go along with burying their own children. No matter the cause, be it sudden illness, lifelong disease, tragic accident, or sudden violent death, these mothers endure this day rather than celebrating it because they mourn still for the child they once held in their arms. These are women who know a strength they cannot describe and those of us who have never experienced it will never be able to relate. This strength is the incredible ability to get out of bed each morning and do whatever needs to be done. They have been through the worst nightmare anyone can imagine, losing the will to smile, laugh or love, and yet, they push on, relearning all of these abilities to some degree.
Some of these mothers have found a semblance of peace, though most harbor an empty space within their hearts waiting to be filled with what will never materialize in this world again. Some of these mothers struggle, watching helplessly as that empty space grows into a gaping grand canyon that is far from majestic and they blindly grope through each day lost and bewildered. Still, some of these women have taken their personal tragedies and built a foundation of love, peace and strength for others fighting the similar battles. They have turned their trauma into a blossoming rose garden of hope, created especially for ones just like themselves but open to all who would join.
To each and every mother, there is One who would open His arms to you and be your Rock, because only He knows everything you have gone through and more. Only He can relate to every single emotion you have ever felt concerning your children and the paths they have followed. Only He can show you how to maintain peace, even when the circumstances surrounding you are closing in threatening to suffocate every effort you make. On this Mother’s Day, remembering that you are not alone, in good times or in bad, here on earth or in heaven above, is the most precious gift that you can carry with you throughout the rest of the year.
God Bless You.