May 9, 2010

A Proverbs 31 Tribute {Part V}

To round out our week of praising mothers, I had to end with the mom that I know the own.

"THAT'S your mom? She looks so young!!!" is something that I've heard often...basically whenever a friend has met my mom. :) And that she is. Even as a little girl, I always thought my mom was gorgeous and now I joke that I hope I age as well as her - at a mere 45+  Mom has aged s l o w l y and gracefully.

Things haven't always been peachy between us...but it has allowed me to see how the gospel and the grace of God transforms people and relationships. We used to butt heads over nearly everything and agreed on nearly nothing. For the most part of my middle school & high school years, she was a single mom trying to support and raise three kids as well as working to get her masters in computer science. Sometimes that meant we were fending for ourselves, and since my mom has had her ups and downs in walking with the Lord, there's a lot that I tried to figure out on my own.

Things are a little different now. I've seen Mom change in so many ways... from being self-sufficient to becoming a woman with a deeper trust in the Lord. A lot of that happened during my senior year in high school when for the first time in 18 years, she was out a job and not able to support our family. Rather she had to depend on my stepfather to do all of that. I know she was humbled.

And since then, that's what I've been learning from her. Humility. Mom endured another testing of her pride as did I, nearly 3 years later during my last two years in college when she started to experiencing excruciating back pain. Over that period of time, my hard working mom slowly was physically effected to the point when she could only lie down or walk around for 15 minute increments. She lost weight and her flawless skin started changing to a different tone because of the pain medication she was on. Any bitterness and resentment I harbored against her for not being the mom that I thought I deserved gave way to seeing her weak and feeble - not only physically but realizing that we were both sinners, sustained only by the grace that God so graciously gave when he saved us from our sins. At times, as I said good night to her at 7pm because she was so exhausted or the afternoons I would come home from college to find her asleep, I could nearly feel my hardened heart towards her melt. Her pain was becoming my pain. Her loneliness and separation from other Christians because she could no longer physically go to church became my burden. My long standing selfishness gave way to desiring to care for and serve her and my rebellious ears listened to all the things she wanted to tell me. All this time, she stood as cheerfully as she could, but I know it was hard. Yet God saw her through that time and showed his faithfulness in her life in so many ways.

Thankfully she was able to have surgery that has allowed her to be restored to living daily with minimal physical hinderance. When I started my life in San Diego, our relationship changed even more as I was further away... and because as I was experiencing working life, all the things my mom was trying to teach me about preparing for the future started making more and more sense. Her relationship with God continued to grow and she became more involved with the church family at Lifesong Community Church - and we were able to better communicate about the gospel and about what it meant to be a Christian. As the only believer amongst her siblings and with my own desire for my siblings to be saved, we share frustrations that we both understand. Now, Mom is more than willing to go out of her way to help people and to make friends with neighbors, co-educators and people at church - sometimes to the point where I am TOTALLY embarrassed. And other times I am defensive of her getting taken advantage of and when I tell her "Mommy! You don't have to do that!" she always replies "I know...but I want to." Yet I know that the heart of it is that she wants to show God's love and shine the light of Christ around her - this is a quality that I've had to learn from her.

So Mommy, thank you for praying for me EVERYDAY. Thank you for being an instrument in our redeemer's hands, showing me how God can work in even seemingly hopeless situations. Thank you for being forgiving, patient and loving your very unloveable children. Thank you for having joy in life's circumstances and for trusting God with his plan for my life. Because I have come to trust him with yours.

Happy Mother's Day. : )


coffee&parchment said...

praise God for our truly amazing mothers :D

Anonymous said...

what a sweet reflection, court... your mom sounds like such a loving woman!

CINDYT said...

LoVE this post.