Simple joy. That’s what could describe my mother. She found the good in everyone, even those who certainly didn’t deserve her adoration, because she always took the time to be present.
Although Mom worked extremely hard in the fields doing sharecropping with my Daddy when I was younger, she never held a public job. You see, Daddy didn’t trust her to work outside of the home, because he was jealous of anyone she may have talked to during the day. He was blind with jealousy. He felt that it was her place to raise the children and have supper on the table at exactly 5:00 every day. I didn’t give my mother the respect that she deserved, and I guess that because she didn’t work outside of the home, that I discounted her contributions to the family. How ashamed I am that I didn’t change my perspective to see the greater picture of how God saw her life.
Being in the home brought consistency and security, and no matter what turmoil we faced, we knew that when we walked through the door, that mom would be there to listen to our latest crisis, or to embellish our lives with her unconditional love. She never criticized us, but we knew that if we went in a wrong direction that she would be hurt; so in her way, she directed our steps to always do what was right and acceptable in the Lord’s eyes. If I had the opportunity to do it all over again, I would be more tolerant of her ways. I was the sophisticated one who was particular about how to set the table, or do dishes, or clean a house, but in the end: did all that really matter?
While I was cleaning, she would be spending time with the other children, laughing and playing. I had a Martha spirit and nothing could dissuade me from following through on my latest cleaning binges. It was as if I wanted to purge my daddy’s alcoholism from our lives, and the only way to do that was to keep everything meticulously clean. That sense of urgency to make everything better has never left me, although today, I can manage the compulsive tendencies more than in the past.
Mom was a noble treasure that I didn’t cherish enough. I now am wise enough to realize what a fool I was to lose something so precious with her, time.
Our time spent together is different now that she has passed; however, it doesn’t mean that I don’t spend time with her. The values that she instilled in me as I was growing up, have been a constant reminder that the Lord will never leave us, nor forsake us.
When situations came up, she’d say, “Let’s pray about it.” I learned to be in the moment with her, not fretting and worrying about any pending crisis. She knew and practiced the scripture; “Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10).
I am so blessed to be one of her daughters.