Tuesday, May 8, 2012
Mama worked when I was young...nights. I don't remember her much in my little growing up years. I know that she had warm hugs, kind words and laughter...laughter that echoed through the house and scared the loneliness away. She cried to leave her babies, but sacrificed because money was scarce. I remember Mama sending me out to play, knee deep in mud, grasping orange-black fish with my hands, which would undoubtedly end up in her utility sink along with a full bucket of creek water - maybe two. One more mess for Mama to clean up - she did it without complaint, mostly. Crush my inquisitive spirit or squelch my searching soul? Never. Instead, she sent me out...encouraged me to explore God's creation. Years passed, I lost interest in the creek, catching fish with bare hand. She sat across the table from me, a Scrabble board in between. She taught me how to lose...and how to win...with grace. We talked over those games, about school, boys...life and death. Years passed, Mama, her aged hands, held mine. She wept with me as I mourned the loss of my first child. Her tears were bitter, her questions were too hard: "Why? Who is this God you serve? How do you still praise Him?" Answers filled my mind, but my voice failed. I had told her not to come...but she did. I knew she would ask questions that had no answers...only God...only by His grace...only Him. Please God, hold me...hold Mama. A year later, Mama, her aged hands held him...the baby as he cried. She laughed with us and rejoiced and said, "How good of God to bless you with this child." Tears flowed down our cheeks, thanksgiving flowed...only God..only by His grace...only Him. Please God, hold me...hold Mama...hold this child. What I learned from Mama, can't be written with pen and ink. The lessons that she taught were in love written on my heart. She spent time with me, when she had little. She bought me new shoes when hers were more than worn out. She taught me I had value in a world that screamed I did not. How do you put a thank you for that into words?