Thursday, July 17, 2008
For the heck of it I did a search on Amazon, for my mother's books. All three were there. All written about the horrors of child abuse, and the relationhip it has to pornography. Books about how to keep our children safe. Books about her own childhood - a childhood so tragic I cannot let myself dwell on it for very long. Yet she is the first one to point out the Lord has taken her sorrows and turned them into triumphs.
This song so epitomizes the love a mother has for her child. A love we do not fully comprehend of course, until we become mothers. My mother is an amazing woman. I live far away from her now. She visits once or twice a year, and we email back and forth. I always have at least one meltdown during each visit. Not because of anything she does (not on purpose anyway), but because I find myself feeling so small in the presence of a person of such faith. I know this is how the children of Billy Graham must have felt, or maybe still feel. To the world, this parent is so well known, so inspiring, such an angel of God. But to the child, this parent is a parent, plain and simple.
Things "came together" for my mother in her early 40's, when she read the Bible from cover to cover. She says her eyes were opened to many things. She was healed of years of hurts, and God began to use her as His ambassador. She is now 77 and shows no sign of slowing down, despite some health issues that would send a lot of people to bed, and keep them there.
In the past 20 years she has written three books. Her words have been translated into many languages and have reached the far corners of the world. She testified in front of the U.S. Senate, has appeared on Larry King Live, done countless radio shows, lectured to groups all over the country, and founded her own non-profit ministry which she named No Neutral Ground. She is extremely active in prison ministries and has spoken at both mens and womens facilities. She does a great deal of work at homeless shelters. These things are really just the tip of the iceberg.
Her stature is small but her presence is not. Motherhood is not for the faint of heart she would say. Motherhood is a serious thing. My sister and I did what we were told. I was 20 years old before I told my mother no, that I wouldn't do something. I don't know which one of us was more surprised. She has two grandsons and loves them both dearly. Yet they are not allowed to get away with anything. She told my son several years ago, "I love you, but stop trying to play me." It's a very down to earth, matter of fact, bite me and I will bite you back approach, and it works.
Several years ago we were on a family road trip with my then nine year old son. He was acting up big time - being quite the donkey. Nothing I tried worked and I was at the end of my rope. Thinking out loud, I remarked "I'm going call my mother and get some advice. She is older and has more experience in raising children." He gulped as the color drained from his face, and said "that won't be necessary, I'll be good." And he was.
She is a person of modest financial means, yet all her needs are met. A friend will call and say "the Lord has laid it on my heart to buy you new tires." She has the faith I aspire to have. She knows it's all about eternity, eveything else is only temporary.
Her trips here are planned around Mondays at Value Village. Seniors get 40% off. Mother has a shopping angel and never fails to find the most incredible bargains on the most beautiful things. She recently took a group of friends on their first thrift store adventure. She had a blast being their guide. I have learned to be frugal and think outside the box. I owe this to my mother.
My mother is a lady every day, all day. I can be a lady if need be, which to me is enough. I think Mom woud disagree. But it's too late now to change me and my warped little mind. I know she loves me, even when I belch and blame it on tree frogs (yes Mom, tree frogs really do exist).
I feel her love, across the miles, across time and space. I always will.