The relationship between a mother and her child is tied by an intimate bond from the moment of the miracle in the womb. Whether your mother-figure growing up was your actual birth mother, or whether your mother is still with us on Earth, they represent a large part of who you are as you carry yourself today.
How often does God say “fear not” or “trust in me” or “when you walk through deep waters I will be there”? Mothers are a godly figure of comfort, our source of trust, and great teachers. Mother’s Day is a time to reflect and appreciate on what they gave us, and how they showed us God’s love.
I have chosen to honor my mother today in a letter. I encourage you to write to your mother wherever she is, to show your gratitude and reflect on the values that you vow to carry onward. Letter writing can cause you to express more than you can say, it can help change your perspective, and it can help you remember. I share below a letter to my mother.
I miss you. This will be my first Mother’s Day without you. Perhaps the screensaver of the two of us on my phone does not make things easier, however every time I look at it, I see the warm, welcoming smile you liberally gave to everyone you met. I cannot thank God enough for the forty-eight hours I was able to spend with you before you passed. I sat next to your bed holding your hand and caressing your hair. How do you say good-bye to a mother?
Motherhood is a calling and a mother’s influence is truly felt throughout the generations. There is so much I could recollect about your life and how you influenced me; how you raised eleven children, your devotion to dad, your love for God and your discipline to prayer, to name just a few. However as wonderful as those memories are, it was what took place in the last few years of your life that influenced me most.
After dad passed, I watched you pack up and move from your home of fifty-five years. A place filled with wonderful memories, where more than enough of the full-grown trees in the yard were planted by your children. I watched you gracefully adjust to new living conditions, make new friends, and comfort lonely people in the assisted living center where you now lived. I watched your mind grow forgetful and your body grow slow, but your faith grow stronger. I watched you as you entered a new season that would require much more love, patience and understanding from your children. You had no idea that you were still teaching us new things. And then, on the day you were to be transported to a new facility, and enter into lockdown, I watched you when the nurses entered the room. You looked at them quietly, closed your eyes and began to pray. And as they were wheeling you away, you opened your eyes, smiled at me, carrying the bouquet of flowers I gave you, and said It will be okay honey, have faith in God. I cried all the way home.
A year later, sitting next to your bed holding your hand in your final hours here on earth, I understood more fully the significance of passing on a generational legacy. I wanted one more conversation with you, but it did not come. Did I forget to ask you something? Did I get all the recipes? Do I remember all the stories? Did I take enough pictures? Who will teach me about aging gracefully, or loss, or be there with a mother’s wisdom?
Motherhood is a calling, one that which heaven itself watches over. I celebrate you today mom, and all of the mothers who daily sacrifice to leave a legacy that influences the next generation to the glory of God. What you gave me is a treasure this world does not offer. It is now up to me to pass this on. Thank you, mom – for everything.