I WONDER what percentage of folks are happy about Mother’s Day this year, compared to how many are sad, mad, or bitter about it.
I got flowers for my wife this year. She says flowers are important to her. They’re just expensive to me.
She likes cards, too. She has a small Hallmark warehouse of cards stashed around here, for sending on various occasions. I’ll bet I could find a Mother’s Day card among them.
But I won’t. I gave her a card with the flowers:
The Mother our kids deserved and the Grandma our grandkids are lucky to have.
But I’m the luckiest of all. –Steve”
She thank me for the card. I said I told the flower lady to write in any ol’ thing that she thought would work.
“No you didn’t,” my wife said.
We’ll have a cookout after church on Sunday. This will be my first Sunday back in the live worship services since COVID broke.
Our daughter will be singing. And afterward, we’ll have a cookout with her family and our son’s family. Guys are in charge of the cooking. Ladies can mingle and direct the five grandkids, all ages 6 and under.
So it’s a good Mother’s Day here in our little houses on the Kansas prairie.
Melancholy Mother’s Day
It’s a sad day for me, too.
If you’ve seen any of my videos, you might remember that I usually end with a mention of my mother back in Ohio.
I ask viewers to give me a thumbs up because “my mother counts them.”
She can’t anymore.
A series of strokes in recent months have taken her eyesight and produced bouts of confusion and odd behavioral changes. Our kids and grandkids call her Nanny. But I’ve told Mom she’s two Nannies now. She’s Normal Nanny on good days or parts of days. And she’s Not Normal Nanny on other occasions.
That’s just the way it is. It’s all in her head. Strokes do that to human beings.
It can do a lot worse. At least Mom and I can talk and joke and be together and remember family stories we’ve experienced.
No candy this Mother’s Day
What do you get for your mother when she can’t have candy and she can’t see flowers?
She has been enjoying audio books, so I decided to pick out some psalms to read to her from the Casual English Bible I’ve been working on.
The hard part was reading without choking.
Here’s something I didn’t know until I made that recording. When you paraphrase the Bible passage and come to it later and read it out loud, it sounds more real, more personal, more like God talking directly to you in that very moment. It caught be off guard.
I was reading Psalm 91 to her. That’s the Psalm I was paraphrasing when Mom’s second son, my little brother, died of COVID. There’s a lot of comforting thoughts in that psalm:
“Those of you who live under God’s wings
Are safe in the shadow of the LORD
…Nestled in the feathers of his wings.”
I choked when I got to this next line:
“You won’t be afraid of the dark.
Or of dangers you face every day.”
Who wouldn’t choke?
Mother’s Day takeaway
What’s it to you? These are my thoughts, not yours.
Not everyone is on good terms with their mother today. For those folks, perhaps today is a moment to reevaluate the relationship. We might decide distance is still the way to go. Sometimes it is. But not always.
For those of us who are on speaking terms, or want to be, we might take time to figure out what Mom wants from us today. Expensive flowers? Check. A card, a gift, a phone call?
I can’t speak for mothers. I can only say that as a dad on Father’s Day, all I want is to either be with my kids and grandkids or to hear their voices on the phone.
Flowers would irritate me. As I said, they’re expensive.
But a meal together is nice. And a chat on the phone is always delightful. I love it when they call me. Even when I’m in the middle of recording a video. I actually have one video in which my son called and I left the ring in the video. When I came back to the recording, I said, “That was my son. I love it when he calls me.”
If Mom is having a good day, I’ll give her a call from 800 miles away.
I know you’ll think about your Mom, too.
Think kindly, if you can.
If you can’t, I understand.
If we’ve had one of those kinds of moms, or no mom at all, Mother’s Day is a tough day.
It’s a tough day for folks with good moms who have died. An empty day.
Yet there’s something we have to fill the day back up if we choose. The hint is here.
“If you’ve loved someone enough to mourn them when they’re gone,
God has blessed you.
Now he’ll comfort you.” Matthew 5:4, Casual English Bible
Happy Mother’s Day. Peace to you.
Casual English Bible
Steve’s Bible-background YouTube Channel
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Very nice, Steve. And, like too much of life lately, very bittersweet.
Nice read. Sorry about your mom though. Right now things are sad, difficult in my life. A yr ago, my siblings & I decided to pull away from our mother. This was very difficult because she is nearly 80. We didn’t want to do this but she has been evil for as long as we can remember. For our own well-being we couldn’t continue on. On top of that, I only have a daughter and I actually live with her taking care of two grandsons while they work. Our relationship has deteriorated over an eight yr period. Too much expected of me. I’m 60. The grandkids adore me but she doesn’t so much. She thinks I’m too God consumed and don’t have a life. I love God! She decided after 11 years of marriage she wants a divorce and this saddens me deeply especially because of the kids – 4 & 8. I’ve been here from the time they were born and they depend on me. In many ways, it’s like their my very own children. The oldest one said, MiMi, mommy and daddy go to work but you’re always here. He likes that and I do too!
Stephen M. Miller
Hi, Teresa. I understand about pulling back from evil. Been there. Doing that. It’s tough, but you can only take so much poison. The other stuff sounds tough, too. But if you can, figure it out and make it work for the kids. If there’s a divorce coming, you might become an important stabilizing anchor for them. A harbor in a storm. Divorce is usually that. A hurricane, a tornado, and an earthquake. My wish for you is peace.
Thank you so much! Somehow I have to let all this hurt go and be the strong anchor for my grandson’s. I can do all things through Christ! Been quoting this ~ I am FREE from unforgiveness and strife. I forgive others and Christ has forgiven me, for the love of God is shed abroad in my heart by the Holy Ghost. This is one of the confessions by Charles Capps. Matt 6:12; Romans 5:5
Stephen M. Miller
I don’t like bittersweet chocolate, either.