I wasn’t prepared for that day. Those days. When they laid you in my arms. And all the days after.
How does a flawed Mama raise her babies well?
I didn’t know that having you would rip down walls I had carefully propped up around my heart.
I wasn’t prepared for this wild love.
How does an imperfect woman love her children? Imperfectly, I'm afraid. But constantly and fervently.
I watch you both. Almost grown. And I miss the days of ponytails and fingernails. Of glitter and glue. I miss snuggling and bedtime stories. I miss your sleeping breath on my skin. I miss catching fireflies under summer stars and “sing me another one, Mama”. I miss all of it.
This is a new season. No more twirling in the yard or hosting tea parties with dollies. You are on the threshold of your own road and I pray that you hold tightly to the things that matter most.
Life can be hard. Difficult seasons may tempt you to see the world through a distorted lens of bitter. The enemy seeks to lure you with a bucket list of wants and must-haves and gotta-gets. It’s a slippery slope right down to empty and unsatisfied. The antidote is thanksgiving. Cultivate a habit of gratefulness.
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:18
Even when they don’t deserve it. Even when you don’t feel like it. Forgive. It’s not a feeling. It’s a decision. I believe it is a decision that thwarts the devil’s schemes. We disarm him when we extend forgiveness. When we hold a grudge, we are engaging in a tug-of-war, struggling against the rope, pulling and straining. But if we release the rope, the game is over. We walk away free. And the door is opened to fresh blessing. I am always amazed by the move of God when I forgive.
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Like forgiveness, love is a choice. An action. Lead with it. Always. Even if they don’t love you back. Love them anyway. When you love those who hurt you, you break through into that other world. You do what is seemingly impossible as a human being, but so possible to those who belong to Christ. He is love itself. It is His very language. When you choose to love, you reflect Jesus. Ask Him to make you an instrument of love.
“If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.
Whenever you can. Wherever you can. We were created for this. You don’t have to look too far to find a place where you can be a blessing. Right where you are you can offer a smile or a word of encouragement. This world is starved for kindness.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
The heart is tricky. It is unsteady. It will mislead you. It is deceitful. The world will tell you to follow it. Follow Christ instead. Till the soil of your heart with what’s true and good and steadfast. Sow His Word into your hearts. It will heal wounds and mend brokenness and will equip you for the road ahead.
My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. For they are life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh. Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.
I don't know why God gifted me with you. I'm so glad He did. Happy Valentine's Day, my darling girls.
Your Mama loves you.
(Photos courtesy of Fox Mountain Photography)
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