"She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future. When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness. She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness. Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her: 'There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!'" - Proverbs 31:25-31
In the midst of the seemingly non-stop news cycle of data and concern over COVID-19, I want to step back and reflect on the qualities of a godly woman, particularly a mother very dear to my heart.
When I was growing up, my mother often shared the wisdom that was passed down to her from her own mother, and her grandmothers before her...to me, and to my sister, Barbara. These devout women are an integral part of my spiritual heritage, just as each of us who are mothers and grandmothers strive to be for our own families. They were Christ-followers, indeed. Not perfect by any means, but their focus was the Lord Jesus, and their purpose in life was leading the lost to the "saving grace."
My mother happily shared many things with my sister and me: Her family recipes (I still have the original wooden recipe box her mother gave her—a treasure, indeed!), her love of the old hymns of the church (I have one of her family's hymnals on my grand piano), and her love of nature, particularly flowers, which she and Daddy grew in their large flower gardens. My mother also introduced me to the joy of reading, opening up a whole new world of information and stories that stirred up my own creativity at a young age.
But the greatest things my mother shared were spiritual ones. Intangible, yet mighty, like the gift of discernment and the incredible power of prayer. And the wisdom of hard work and putting others first before oneself. ("Jesus, others, and you...what a wonderful way to spell joy," as the old lyrics go). And the characteristics of respect, responsibility, and trustworthiness, too.
So, today and always, I am thankful for a mother who loved God and her family, above all else—my dear and gracious mother, Jane, gone to be with the Lord fourteen years ago this summer. I miss her, yes, but her legacy lingers on, influencing her daughters, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and everyone who knew her.
Happy Mother's Day to all of you who are mothers—biological and adoptive. And to those whose hearts ache every, single day to cradle your child in your arms, I was once in that very place, yearning, waiting, and praying earnestly, until my grieving heart was at long last blessed by the amazing gift of adoption. At this moment, I'm asking our Lord Jesus to surround you with His tender love and comfort, and grant you the miracle you so desire, in His way and time.
With blessings and love,
At this writing, I have completed the final review of my September 2020 novel, The Stone Wall, already deep into the writing of my Fall 2021 novel, The Beginning, a stand-alone set in beloved Hickory Hollow, PA.
Also, my Amish Cheer cards are bringing, yes, cheer, and encouragement to many, and we've shipped to 20 states, so far. These Amish-related cards are winging their way to moms and grandmothers for Mother's Day, May 10—a wunnerbaar-gut gift idea! See more about them at amishcheer.com.