Proverbs 31: 28
Her children arise and call her blessed;
Image from www.thestarlitecafe.com
I was lost in my thoughts, tears streaming down my face. "When I die, I hope my children will feel that way about me. Will they? Will they be able to say those type of things about what I (Mom), taught them?" I know, it is probably a little morbid to be thinking about the day my children are standing before a podium in front of a crowd (well I hope there is a crowd anyway), saying good bye to me at my memorial service. As morbid as it sounds, it was one of the many things I was thinking about during my friend Linda's memorial service yesterday. As I described in my last few posts, Linda passed away from cancer on June 24, 2012. Yesterday was her memorial service. Linda and I had that special bond that only people who have been battling cancer together can have. I can't say we were really close. I can't say that I knew her as much as I wish I did. I am closer to her adult children, then I was to Linda. However, after listening to her daughters describe the intimate relationship they had with their mother, I truly wish I took more time to get to know her heart.
They described the feisty, rebellious and intense way about her, but also all the things that she pressed into their hearts. As the above scripture describes, her children arose and called her blessed. Her daughter Liz listed so many things that she learned from her mom, I wish I had written them all down. She taught them to always wish on a shooting star, always get down on your hands and knees and play with little children, to find a child's laughter contagious, to never worry about things because God is in control, to never grow up or take life to seriously, to always share and give your everything to others, that their beauty is on the inside not outward appearances, to always say "I Love You" and to be strong and courageous women. Wow.
After the service, one of Linda's cousins described her to me; "she had an image in her heart of how she was going to raise her children, and she could care less if everyone on the planet disagreed with her". She was an early rebel of the traditional education system, and home schooled her children before home schooling was thought to be kind of "cool". Whatever rebellious ways that society thought she had, in my opinion, she certainly did it right by her children and the Lord.
As I listened, I was making mental notes. I want to be that kind of mother to my children. I want to make a lasting impression on their hearts. I pray that God uses me while He is molding, throwing, shaping and spinning my two little lumps of clay. I pray that every day I press love and lessons into their little beings. However, don't get me wrong, I know that Linda was not perfect. I KNOW that I am and always will be a FAR, FAR cry from the "perfect Proverbs 31 mother". As I am typing, I am reminded of my recent Facebook post:"Seriously....if someone video taped me today, they would lock me up in a straight jacket and force an IV drip of Ritalin and Xanex!!!! Wow..."
It is true. There are many days that I exist on chaos. I wonder if I am making a difference in their lives? Do the daily challenges and the mundane tasks of motherhood prevent me from being the mom that they deserve? There are days when I fail at "playing" with my children, because my ADHD and chaos keeps me occupied in daily household chores. Existing in my ADHD and chaotic world does not always lend itself to being anything that remotely resembles the "Proverbs 31 wife and mother". I often find that I put the pancakes away in the silverware drawer instead of the refrigerator or spend 45 minutes looking for my cell phone only to find it was in my hand because I was talking on it. There are more days then not that my girls are wearing mixed matched socks and a dirty shirt. How can I teach my girls how to be GREAT, when I am barely I can barely get out of my own way?
Then there are days that I am chasing two laughing lumps of clay down a sandy beach and playing in the salty waves. There are days that I lose count on how many times my girls throw their arms around my neck just to tell me that they love me. There are days that I watch their little faces brighten when the "light bulb" goes on during a lesson. There are days that I KNOW that God hand picked me to be their Mommy. I know that this is where the Lord has planted me. I will be committed to "blooming" where I am planted. If making endless peanut butter and jelly sandwiches is what the Lord has called me to do, then I will make the BEST PB & J's that I am capable of making in this season of my life. I am the gardener and they are the seeds, and I will tend to the garden that the Lord has entrusted to me. I think that is what my friend Linda got right. I think she raised her children as she believed the Lord led her. She might not have been the perfect mom, but she was committed to instilling a love and a faith of Jesus in their hearts. It is because of that love and faith, all the other things were absorbed like water in a big sponge.
A quote from one of my favorite books, Mothers of Influence says this, "Our mothers are our first teachers. They teach us to eat with a spoon, wash our hands and share our toys. But first and foremost, our mothers are the keepers of the flame of our faith, teaching us to know, love and serve God. Their influence in our lives is too valuable to calculate. The ripples of that influence through the generations are inestimable".
Thank you Lord for Linda's legacy of faith and love that will forever dwell in the hearts of her children and her grandchildren. May her lessons ripple through the generations of her family line. Thank you for entrusting my precious children to me, even though I am a lumpy, bumpy, chaotic, ADHD piece of clay. May I seek the Lord's guidance every day, in even the most mundane tasks like matching socks.
A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is calling to be made....so until next time...Lumpy Out..