They’re one of a kind. And, no one else has one exactly like ours.
Even though we commonly say “A dog is man’s best friend,” in reality, it’s one’s mother. Now, unlike a dog, mothers aren’t always happy to see us, especially when we’ve done wrong or stayed out too late. However, even then—after a strong tongue-lashing, grounding, old-fashioned whipping, etc.—a mother’s love will still be there, even when her heart is breaking.
Now, it goes without saying that mothers aren’t perfect. They still have their faults and there are times when their tongues are sharp and their tempers are short. And, there are times when they’re even M.I.A. (missing-in-action) and, for whatever reason, end up leaving their children or giving them up for adoption.
Such was the case with my biological mother.
Born in central Arkansas not far from where I was raised, she was mother to three of us children. Married at an early age, it wasn’t long before her husband (our biological father) left her and us three kids for another woman.
Although I was still very young, I still vaguely remember her working at a restaurant somewhere in southwest Little Rock. Her mother also lived with us, but was quite sickly as I recall. But, the time finally came when she didn’t feel like she could take care of us any longer and we were left with a biological aunt.
Thus, I never really got to know her. Even though she still came around the next several years on our birthdays to give us a card and a little money, we still never got to know her, which left a void in my life in many ways.
Some 30+ years later my wife, three sons and I had the opportunity to go visit her in another state while traveling to the Missionary Learning Center near Richmond, Virginia. For some reason, I felt the need to go see her—if, for no other reason, so she could get to meet my wife and her three grandsons.
Needless to say, she was surprised and overjoyed to see us. She welcomed us in with open arms; however, it didn’t take long to realize that she had a “heaviness” about her and battled depression.
As I tried to reach out to her, I discovered that she still regretted having given us three kids up so many years before. She also continually berated herself for having done so. So, I tried to assure her that we all make mistakes and, like the Bible says, God had worked everything together for good (Romans 8:28).
In some ways, that seemed to comfort her. She was glad that my family and I were headed overseas as international missionaries. But, you could still see that deep sadness in her eyes and hear that melancholy tone in her voice.
That was the last time I ever saw or talked to her. Some 10 years later I learned of her passing while we were still in the Philippines. And, my heart ached within me that I really never got to know her.
That’s why I encourage mothers to love their children with a steadfast love. I also encourage husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the Church and children to show their love by always obeying their mothers—even when they think they’re wrong.
Here’s hoping you’ll take some time out this week to honor your mother if she’s still living. Take her out to eat somewhere. Buy her some flowers. But, even more, spend some time with her telling her how much she means to you, for you never know if you’ll get another opportunity in this life to do so.
And, if your mother’s already gone, spend a few minutes thanking God for her. Thank Him for blessing your life with her, even though she was imperfect. Then, dedicate the rest of your life to serving Him because in Him we find the true meaning of real Love—and oh how sweet it is! God bless you.
If you’d like to contact Bro. Tom or receive his daily e-mail devotional, entitled “Morning Manna,” you can write him at P.O. Box 10614, Fort Smith, AR 72917 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.