Saturday, May 7, 2011

The sting and the balm

As Mother's Day got closer each day this week, I realized that the thought of it was dragging me under.  I know this doesn't make sense; my own mother is alive and cancer-free, and my two children are relatively healthy and growing like weeds.

Then I went back and read last year's post about Mother's Day:  If I'm lucky, I might get take-out.  Pretty much all of it is still true today.  My friend is still mourning the loss of her precious first-born, though now she's also celebrating the sweet life of her second son.  The sting and the balm.  And my take on the day?  My wishes?  They're still the same.  Imagine a day without a crisis, a day where Hallmark sentiments were felt...  My post of just a few days ago reflects the difficulties.

I've also been brought down by all the Facebook status and photo changes. 
My mom Wiped my tears... Hugged me tight... Watched me succeed... Saw me fall... Cheered me on... Kept me going strong.... Moms are a promise from God that you will have a friend forever! Put this on your status if you have or had a wonderful mom you love ♥ I LOVE YOU MOM
To all my FB friends, in honor of Mother's Day I'm trying to see how many of you are willing to change your profile picture to a picture of your mother and keep it there till May 9. Here's my awesome Mom! If you will and like this idea, please repost this as your status so everyone gets the word and see how many beautiful mothers we can get on FB!
To all the unselfish moms out there who traded sleep for dark circles, salon haircuts for a ponytail, long showers for quick ones, late nights for early mornings, and designer handbags for diaper bags, and wouldn't change a thing. Let's see how many moms post this who don't care what they gave up and instead LOVE what they got in return....Post this if you love being a MOM!
I've carried a baby within my body. I've slept with a baby on my chest. I have kissed boo boos, been puked, peed, and pooped on and spent sleepless nights in a rocking chair. But I wouldn't have it any other way. My body isn't magazine perfect, but when I look into the mirror, I see a mom and there is no greater honor. Make this your status if you're proud to be a mom.
While I feel bad for my FB friends who have lost their mothers, I am sad that my own mother's mental health issues have driven such a wedge between us.  Alive?  Yes.  Mothering?  No.  Those same Hallmark feelings just aren't felt, and that's a pretty nasty way to feel.

With that comes the realization that my children have never seen modeled the traditional multigenerational Mother's Day church service followed by a family gathering or event followed by a wonderful meal at a dress-up restaurant.

Looking back towards my mother, looking forward towards my children, neither is a death, but they are still a loss.

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I've been reading this:


(My post of a few days ago explains why.)  

I told the doctor yesterday that just the introduction so far was helpful.  I'm a quarter of the way through it now, and even if it's not a perfect match, I'm hopeful that some good can come of it.  Certainly living the way we have been can't continue.

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Just a few minutes ago, my 11-year-old daughter showed me her AWANA homework that will finish her book.  Takes a little of the sting out of the above.

The assignment was to write at least one page about an answer to one of the questions in the book.  She had to include the backup verses, two more backup verses she found in the Bible, and how the answer helps her in her life.

The Holy Spirit Seals Me

     I need to know that the Holy Spirit seals me in God.  This means that once I trust Jesus as my Savior, no one can take Him away from me, so I am sealed and Jesus is in my heart.  I also will go to heaven and nobody can take that away from me, since no one can take my faith away from me.  Once you trust Jesus as your Savior, the Holy Spirit fills you and you are sealed; no one can take God out of your heart.  I have understood that by reading and memorizing some verses.
"And do not grieve
The Holy Spirit of God,
With whom you were sealed
For the day of redemption" - Ephesians 4:30
     This verse means that you should not be unhappy about being sealed by the Holy Spirit, since you can now be with God forever in heaven.  You were sealed by the Holy Spirit, so no one can take your ticket to heaven away.

     This verse helps me in life by telling me that no matter how many times I do something wrong, I am still going to be with God forever, even though I'm not perfect.  It also reminds me that God does things for a reason, and that no matter what goes wrong, God is always with you.  For example, when all the tornadoes hit Tuscaloosa, Alabama, home of my favorite college football team, I was really sad, especially since it hit both the homes of many people, which devastated everyone around, and the Bryant-Denny stadium, which is my favorite team's stadium.  Then I realized the good things: 1. the storm didn't hit the college itself. 2. There were many ways to help, including on my favorite Facebook game. 3. Nothing goes perfectly all the time, and this is one of those times when even Auburn has to feel sort of bad. 4. God will always be with the people in Tuscaloosa, and they should have faith, since God will guide them to the right path.  5. God has a reason, and when you are stuck in a hole, you look at the good things and climb out.  God will always be with the people of Tuscaloosa, and will lead them to the path of rebuilding.
"I desire to do your will, O my God,
Your law is within my heart" - Psalm 40:8
     This verse means that we should let God do what He does and not challenge His actions.  We should realize that we should want God to do what he does, since God is all-powerful.  God's law is what keeps us going, and what lets us into heaven, so while we may not like some of God's doings, they are always for a reason.

     This verse helps me by reminding me that everything God does is done for a reason, so even if we do not like the immediate effect of God's action, we should be glad God has done His will.  Again I refer to the damage in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  While no one really enjoyed seeing the town in ruins, or the side ripped off of the Bryant-Denny stadium, we should all remember that God's doings are all for a reason, and we should think of what good will come out of this.  God will do what He does, and it is all for a reason, although sometimes the short-term effects are different than the long-term ones.
"But I call to God,
And the LORD saves me.
Evening, morning and noon,
I cry out in distress
And he hears my voice" - Psalm 55:16-17
     This verse means that when you pray to God for help, He will answer.  When you need God, He will be there.  God will always listen to your prayer, even if you think it is insignificant.

     Once again, I am making a reference to the disaster in Tuscaloosa.  Many people have been praying for people in Tuscaloosa, and people in Tuscaloosa may have been praying for themselves.  Some people may have thought that their prayers have not been heard, but they have been.  God listens to every single prayer, and will help.  Even if you do not think your prayers are heard, God will always listen, no matter how unimportant you think your prayer is.

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