My story begins over 65 years ago, in a church in Wisconsin, where my dad was the new vicar at a small Lutheran church. The story goes that the vicar saw a beautiful young woman with long black hair and an angelic white dress, singing with the choir in the loft, and pronounced that he would marry her someday. I don't know if the story is true or not, but it's a lovely story, and that vicar and angel in the choir became my parents.
My dad went on to pastor churches in Minnesota and Iowa before he was called to teach in the seminary in Minnesota that supplied pastors for our churches. Mom and dad married during the war, and I came along two years after Pearl Harbor. Within the next nine years my parents gave me my three sisters and a brother.
My mom worked hard during my growing up years. We didn't have much, times were hard, and pastors of small country churches weren't paid very well, but my mom put three meals on the table every day, kept us in clean clothes , we slept on clean sheets and lived in a clean parsonage. We had a large garden and raised many vegetables. Members of the church kindly gave us of their harvest also, and often gifted us with chickens or other meat. I know that one pound of hamburger will feed eight people if you serve lots of potatoes, vegetables and bread with it. The teacher of our small Christian Day school also lived with us, and that added another adult mouth to feed. Mom did countless loads of laundry every week, down in the basement in the old wringer washer and twin rinse tubs. Each week my dad's seven long sleeved white shirts were starched with Niagara powdered starch, the collars, french cuffs and the plackets down the front being gathered in your hand and dipped into the milky white liquid before being hung on the outdoor lines at the edge of our huge yard.
One of my sisters was born with numerous allergies and she was often sick. Mom often had to hold her to soothe the horrible asthma attacks she would suffer. Another sister had epilepsy and for many years had daily seizures. Mom was there always. My dad developed emphysema and mom had to nurse him during his last years, and hold a full time job at the same time.
My mom loves her grandkids! When we adopted four kids, she accepted them as her blood kin. She also loves her great grandkids and enjoys every minute she's able to spend with them.
Mom also loves her neighbors as herself. While she was still driving she would pick up friends to go to lunch or Bible Study, or to the meetings of several women's groups at church. For many years after she retired from her full time job, she worked at the hospital gift shop or at the city's senior citizen's center.
My mom is a woman of deep faith and abiding love. She has always sought God's will and has always followed it. She believes His word and lives it. She has a joyous spirit. She and my dad brought me to the Lord as an infant. I learned my Bible stories, learned Bible verses, memorized hymns and studied the commandments at her knee. In my mom I have the best example of what a wife and mother should be; an example that I have often failed to follow.
Now that my mom's health is shaky, I love her even more, praying that this love will help keep her with us for many more years. I don't know what the outcome of her current problems will be, but I do know that she is ready for what ever lies ahead. I spent time with her today, and for awhile it was almost like old times around the dinner table, with conversation and laughter, but within a short period of time, mom was ready to lay down. She looked completely exhausted and was confused.
Dear Father in heaven, thank you for my mom. Thank you for her gentle spirit, and her faithful love. Thank you for the lessons she taught me, lessons about your faithful love. Please keep her safe in your arms, and if it is your will, grant her healing of her health problems. Bless my mom, and all moms everywhere. In Jesus holy name, Amen.
I love my mom!