32 years ago, yesterday, November 9, at 5pm CST – my Mother died.
She went to be with God.
I have no reason to be sad. I know she is in perfect peace. Her pain ended when her Spirit left her body. Her soul received a new heavenly body and her spirit (now apart from her earthly body) is in the presence of Christ (2 Corinthians 5: 1-10). In Christ, a saved soul finds perfect peace.
But I still ache. I was 15 years old when she was ripped out of my life.
But I still ache, remembering how much she loved me.
I still ache because other than My Savior, she is the only person in this world who ever loved me unconditionally. That’s what Mother’s do…
So, I’ll do the one thing I do best. I will write. I’ll share with you, and others who are overwhelmed by grief, sorrow. The pain changes with time. It does linger and it morphs in shape and scope.
We have to remember, if we didn’t Love, we wouldn’t have pain to feel…
A Healing Process
I continue working on my Memoir. It is difficult work; both exhausting and gut-wrenching. The effort involved with it is more difficult than any blog post I’ve ever completed (or not completed. Yes, I have many unfinished drafts started.)
God has told me that I need to do this. I need to write this memoir. I don’t particularly care for this task, but God’s direction trumps my own will. So, the race is on…and out of obedience I press onward.
(If I could talk to Mom, today, this is what I might say)
Where did 32 years go? I miss you. As much now as I did then. I used to want to believe that you were close by, watching over me. I now want to believe that you are far away from THIS world, and in peace, in God’s presence. Using your beautiful voice to sing Praises in His presence.
I truly had no idea when you passed, how difficult this world could be. How cold and callous. Although I knew God was my friend, it took me many years to recognize, to see, that He was actually standing right by my side since the moment you stopped breathing. That he was holding me up when I was not strong enough to do it for myself.
I am amazed at the seed of faith you planted in my life. Amazed at how far it has carried me. The road has been extraordinarily difficult. There have been many times I have wondered why the cup of bitterness was passed my way, until I realized that each cup held a very important lesson. The cup and its contents weren’t what mattered but how and what I DID with what I learned after the fact.
I do remember your character and even if my memory of your face and voice is foggy, the many photos I have around me are reminders of both your inner and outer beauty. The lesson from your life, is that your mustard seed has taken root. Not unlike Daniel in the Lion’s Den, Shadrach, Meshach & Abednego in the Fiery-Furnace or Esther rescuing her people, you knew the dangers and risks of loving like Christ. You stood with feet planted firmly in the Armor of God. (Ephesians 6:10-18)
I know you didn’t want to let go of this life, because I was so young and it seemed too soon.
I loved being your little girl. I was so blessed to have you as my Mother. But God is, was and always has been good.
God has promised to make beauty from all the ashes.
I have come to believe you do not know what has happened, because if you did it would break your heart. And in Heaven, there are no broken hearts, no tears.
God is working with me on restoring what has been destroyed and broken. As much as I initially was frustrated with each step of challenge along the way, each one is necessary to make me not only stronger and build my character but make me MORE dependent on God. Which is the ultimate goal: Spiritual Maturity – More like Christ, less like me.
In hindsight, 32 years ago…you had reached that pinnacle. I watched you walk outside to say goodbye to me. Your time was short. In fact the last time I saw you was 3 days before you died. But during that last visit, you wanted to ensure I witnessed what it means to not give up; even under the harshest of circumstances. Even though your body was frail, you wanted me to see you walk. Though you had little strength, your faith had grown from a mustard seed into a tree with mighty roots. God gave you Dad’s assistance to wave your way into my memory.
You were determined to make that memory count.
I am ready to let to go of heartache, grieve, sorrow and anger. These are not Fruits of the Spirit. They are hindrances. I have written a dozen scenes, am writing more and continue to clean them up as I dig deeper.
I often didn’t understand why so much happened when it did, but it’s becoming clear now. Without these tests and trials, the gift of writing, God leading me and your encouragement to keep going with it…I wouldn’t have a platform to share encouragement, hope or faith.
Pain allows us to appreciate Joy — it’s when we choose to look with Hope through our pain we find a way through the Suffering.
Spiritual Gifts are the avenues that allow us to share our strengths with others.
My work continues and, in fact, may just be getting started.
I love you, Mom; to the moon and back and I will always miss you.
(End note to Readers: if I wasn’t “Saved” & “Born Again” the carnal side of me might never heal from losing my Mom. But the beauty in Surviving Loss as a “Child of God” is that I know I will see her when God calls me HOME. I belong to Him and one day will be with My Mom and God, forever in Eternity.)
I know I’m not home yet. Though I am not of this world, I thank you for this life. For both the beauty and the pain. For being there with me every step of the way, for not letting me fall but to help me learn from failure and to keep going. Failure isn’t the end, it’s just the beginning. The world has it backwards and Christ proved that on the cross, with his resurrection. Thank you….
You are the reason I am here, you are my purpose. My lamp stand and a light unto my path.
Help keep us on the straight and narrow road. Strengthen us through the valleys and protect us as we navigate winding roads.
We Pray this IJN, Amen
Be Blessed and Be a Blessing to others,
I don’t know why God put it on my heart to write to you this morning.
I guess ’cause in hindsight, yesterday was a Monday and I didn’t “Armor Up” the way I should have. Yes, I took it to God at the end of the day.
But I find myself tearing me down, even though I know I’m supposed to be forgiven.
Is this what you felt like every time you stumbled?
I remember you always told me when I was little I could talk to you about anything. And as I recall, I did.
I miss that. I miss you.
Although I manage to stumble through Mothers Day, Christmas feels 10x harder. Even with two awesome kids. It seems like I shouldn’t feel this way.
Christmas is about Joy and Peace and a Prophecy of Promise. But with this Shemitah year, it seems like a roller coaster ride on “steroids!” And you know I am NOT fond of roller coasters!
Christmas, the holiday, is the time of the year I fell in love with, largely because of you. God may have given us a Baby to save our Eternal Souls but He gave each of us a Mom to hold, hug, and turn to when the World wasn’t kind.
I really don’t want to go on and on. I don’t want to blubber my way through this. So, I am going to find my way back to my original goal. To let you know something that feels really important today, to tell you “several something’s” – even though you left this world behind decades ago:
I Love You.
I’m so glad I was your daughter.
As little as I remember about you, I know I am becoming more like you everyday. I can feel that in my Soul.
Besides my Creator, you were my biggest fan, my cheerleader and the wind beneath my wings.
Without you, there would not have been a me.
I know you wanted to stay here with me and watch me grow from your baby girl into a young woman. I guess God figured He had that covered. Whatever His purpose or plans for my life …like you, I trust in Him.
God is GOOD, ALL the time. And. God is ALWAYS GOOD.
My search for Christmas goes on. Even if it’s tucked away, I know God will lead me to it.
God Bless each of you. There is a Hope to be found that will bring us what we need! Just ask and it will be given to you (Matthew 7:7)
I wish each and every Mother out there reading this, a really wonderful day. A day full of blessings and “not to be forgotten” memories.
I pray that you are blessed and are able to spend some portion of this weekend (if not this Sunday) with your family or friends that you enjoy sharing time with.
But for me, this particular weekend has had to take a back seat from my “calendar” of emotions for 31 years now.
Christmas, Thanksgiving and (especially) Mother’s Day are still hard for me. As much as I’ve worked over the years to “toughen up” it only gets modestly easier.
The sting of remembering Mom on Mother’s Day just takes me back to the months preceding her death and most especially the week of her passing
The simple truth is…I only spent 14 years at my mother’s side. Inhumanely short by any standard. Although, I guess that might be more time than others(Forgive me if this is the case.)
Every one of us has the best Mom in the world. Or a mother figure that we identify with, someone that holds a special place in our heart.
Someone that loved us unconditionally. No questions asked. Just because we are/were.
This Mother’s Day I will enjoy the basics of the “present”….it will be less about the over-hyped, over-priced, over-commercialized societal norms of “celebrating.”
I will enjoy the moments of simple conversation, and appreciate the smiles and laughter of those around me.
And I will shift my focus and recall my Mom gazing at me in wonder, watching her make homemade noodles, driving with her in the car across town, going to church on Sundays.
I will try to remember Everything..I will struggle and strain to remember all the little things, all the big things. I miss her voice.
and finally how she relished sitting on the couch and either sewing or reading her bible.
And like her I will find myself doing some of the same things she enjoyed;
by living in the moment, loving and appreciating God’s creation, writing, creating one-of-a-kind embroidered designs, Shining The Light digging into scripture.
I yearn to be a shining light to others, the shining light she was to me.
To spark a fire that kindles other souls…souls that are hungry and thirst for truth, knowledge and wisdom.
Yes, it’s Mother’s Day weekend…but honestly, it doesn’t have to be Mother’s Day for me to want to celebrate who my Mom was – every day of the year. Even now….
So, I dedicate this space, this blog post to all the Mom’s, ladies and girls whose Mom’s are no longer here. And I want to share with
you the names of some movies I’ve watched in the past that as a Mother-less daughter have really resonated deep down within me.
That doesn’t mean they aren’t difficult to watch…or re-watch, if you will:
Terms of Endearment
The Parent Trap
(and please feel free to add what your favorite “Mother’s Day” style movies are to the comments section)
“I’m no longer a lost sheep; because I have a shepherd watching over me.”
Thank you for making His presence so real to me Mom. Thank you for showing me what trust, faith and grace should look like.
I am so thankful the Newsboys produced this song…it is so timely.
And I will see you again, Mom. I miss you – so very much!
For all Mother’s Everywhere…Have a Happy and Joyous Mother’s Day weekend!
Keeping The Fire of Faith Alive,