One day Matthew, my four-year-old, demonstrated just how much mothers are often under-appreciated nowadays. He came into the kitchen and informed me in a matter-of-fact tone, that he wished I would die -- but he liked me a little because I gave him food and drinks. Feeling a bit daunted by four-year-old honesty (or should I say brutality?) I replied, "Well, I'm glad you like me a little, because I love you A LOT!"
By bedtime, he had softened towards me. As I tucked him in, he held up his two hands with fingers outstretched and said "Mom, I'm going to love you for this many days." I smiled (he didn't notice the tongue-in-cheek) and said "Wow! You're gonna love me for ten whole days?!" He nodded, smiling happily and was soon off to dreamland.
I tend to take statements like these from my young children with nary a blink -- but honestly, aren't we mothers often given a bad rap? For this reason, I've decided to give moms everywhere a Mother's Day present: two stories which pay tribute to good old Mom.
First is one about Ben Johnson, the famed black physician. Dr. Johnson is noted for making brilliant ground-breaking advances in his field of pediatric surgery, but interestingly, early in his academic career he was perceived as a failure.
As a youngster in public school, he was not considered bright, and his grades were low. He attributes his eventual success to one thing: his mother. (Don't you just love this kind of story?) His mother, surprisingly, was illiterate, but she possessed an abundance of two important ingredients: faith and love. She had the love to consistently place her boys before the throne of grace by prayer, and the faith to believe in them, despite daunting report cards.
Although she herself could not read, she required both her sons to write two book reports a week. It was this sole requirement, coupled with prayer and the firm conviction that her boys could succeed, that turned things around for Johnson. Soon he was at the top of his class -- and now he is at the top of his field!
Benjamin West, the famous American painter, also attributed a great deal to his mother. This is how he described what made him a painter: "One day his mother left him with his sister Sally. He found some bottles of colored ink and decided to paint Sally's portrait. In the process he messed up the kitchen. When his mother returned, she said nothing about the kitchen. Picking up the paper he was working on, she exclaimed, 'Why, it's Sally!' And she rewarded his effort with a kiss. West said, 'My mother's kiss that day made me a painter.'"*
Inspiring stories, no? As mothers, we share the same ability to influence our children to be their best. It's really no less than astonishing, the degree to which we can make a difference in young lives!
Are your children disappointing you in an academic area? Pray for them. Believe in them. Are they troublesome in any way at all? Love them. As someone has said, "Love them most when they least deserve it." And, if that fails to improve things, (but it won't), you can always begin requiring two book reports a week!
Happy Mother's Day, moms. You deserve it.
*quote taken from, Seven Things Children Need, by John M. Drescher
copyright 2006 Linore Rose Burkard
Linore Rose Burkard is an Inspirational Romance Author and article writer. Visit her website at: http://www.LinoreRoseBurkard.com. You can also sign up for her FREE monthly eZine, "Upon My Word!" at http://www.LinoreRoseBurkard.com/Regency_eZine.html Raised in New York, Ms. Burkard homeschooled her children for ten years, and now resides in southwestern Ohio.