Wow, I received a beautiful card in the mail a couple of weeks ago from my mom.
Here’s what it said: “My Beautiful Daughter, I want you to always know that in good and bad times I will love you, and that no matter what you do or how you think or what you say you can depend on my support, guidance, friendship and love every minute of every day. I love being your mother.” She then hand wrote: “We both appreciate the person and daughter that you are. You are such an encourager and caring person. Words cannot express our love for you. Continue to be the christian daughter, mother, grandmother, wife & sister you are. God bless you and Ron!”
To hear these words from my mother meant more than you’ll ever know. I think all of us, no matter our age, want to hear words of love, encouragement, and support from others, especially our parents, and this card just filled me with such a great feeling I can’t even explain it.
Since Sunday is Mother’s Day, I thought it appropriate to write this blog and to say “thank you, mom for my card, you don’t know how much that meant to me!” I’d also like to say “thank you” for giving me the best gift you could ever give me. Over the years I have grown from being a daughter and sister, to also being a wife, mother and grandmother. And I remember so many times over those years, how you have apologized for things you had done or said that you felt you shouldn’t have or that might not have come out just right, but as humans we all have the tendency to hurt and fail those we love. I believe that’s just part of being human. The important thing is that we recognize it and we work at making those changes for the better.
So, the best gift you have given me was your love and your faith in a God who is alive and well — our Creator, Lord and Savior. Even though you have apologized over the years for raising Jeff and I in a very legalistic church, where man placed laws and regulations on us, that God never expected us to have, the positive side to it all was that we grew up learning that there was a living God, and that He loved us so much He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ to die on the cross and be resurrected for our sins, so that we could be his children and live with Him forever in eternity. Do you know how powerful that is? I may have had to seek counseling for a distorted view of the do’s and don’ts that man, not God, put on us over those years, having to work through things like unhealthy guilt and shame, trying to be perfect, never feeling worthy or good enough, but as an adult, seeing those who have never been told about this wonderful God and what He and His son has done for us, makes me appreciate your faith, and appreciate your desire to want me to have this eternal life.
To find the balance from seeing God as a God with a whip ready to correct my errors, to seeing the true God of love and grace has helped me build character and has helped me to be more understanding of those who feel an anger toward God, that I would never have understood had my life been different.
For years after the church split, I couldn’t even read God’s word because I thought it was a bunch of do’s and don’ts, laws and regulations, and I was so tired and exhausted from trying to be perfect, and knowing I kept failing, I couldn’t even stand to open it up. But after years of christian counseling, 12 step codependency groups, and seeking God’s face, desiring a relationship with Him as a loving God, I have come to a place where God, not man, wants me to be. He wants me to be “me” – no more or no less. As His word says in Psalm 139:14 “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” It may have taken me several years to work through all of these issues, but one thing I’ve learned is that our timing is not God’s timing, and going through these trials and tribulations, finding who I truly am, the Jackie God created, and not the distorted view that man placed upon me for the first 22 years of my life, has brought me to a place where I’m patient with others who have a distorted view of God as well, just as He had patience with me for all of those years working through my baggage. And it’s given me the attitude of appreciation for who He really is and what He really means to me and all of those He created, that I would not have appreciated had I not had to work through all of these things. Just as a caterpillar has to work hard to get himself out of the cocoon to become a beautiful butterfly and be able to fly freely, so am I. If we try to help the caterpillar by breaking open the cocoon, instead of allowing it to work hard to open it himself, then we really have done it an injustice, because that work it puts forth, helps build itself up to be strong enough to fly. So by helping to open the cocoon would cause it to be too weak and unable to fly, not allowing it to become what it was created to be. And so it is with me mom. All of the work and effort you’ve seen me put forth over these years, are the efforts for me to get out of my cocoon, and to become the beautiful butterfly to freely fly as God intended. So, the next time you think you should apologize for this, please stop and remember this blog – for you should be applauded for what you’ve given me, and I can’t thank you enough. I love you mom! And as Proverbs 31:28 states: “Her children arise and call her blessed…”. And as you can see, part of my freedom to fly, is the ability to open God’s word and to be able to read all of the blessings and promises God provides. I can’t get enough of His word, now that man’s distortion is removed, and the clear view of God’s word shines through, I just soak it up.
God bless you mom for who you are and what you’ve given me. God has blessed me with the most wonderful mother in the world!
Love, your daughter,