Another Mother’s Day is now in the history books. For some of you it was a day of breakfast in bed, cards, flowers, and loving appreciation. For others it was a day of sorrow and grief; not because your child has died but because your child has disowned or forgotten about you.
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book. Psalm 56:8 NIV)
Many mom’s live with deep regrets about their parenting. They also live with the consequences of their choices.
Take for example a woman I will call Jackie. When her kids were little Jackie used drugs and drank to excess. All too often she missed important school deadlines for projects and permission slips, and more often than not her kids were the only ones who didn’t have a parent present at school functions. Because she spent most of those years drunk or high her kids learned how to function without her and left home before either of them finished high school.
Jackie has repented of her substance abuse and has lived without using drugs or alcohol for over 10 years. She’s repeatedly reached out to her children who live just in the next town. While they are polite, the kids have given her the message they are not interested in a relationship with her. So, Mother’s Day is a painful reminder of what she squandered.
Ana tried for 10 years to get pregnant. When she finally conceived she faithfully ate properly, took her vitamins, and kept every appointment. In her 5th month she learned that her baby girl would most likely not survive after birth. She had a rare chromosomal defect that the doctors told Ana made her daughter unable to sustain life outside the womb. They recommended an abortion. Ana chose to continue the pregnancy and pray for a miracle. When her little Jewel was stillborn, Ana knew that she had done what was right and rejoiced in that knowledge. Her heart breaks every Mother’s Day for the child that will never present her with a handmade card or a hand full of dandelions as a gift.
Hannah is a woman who spent the first decade of her parenting angry. She was angry all the time and frequently took her anger out on her son in rage-filled tirades. She physically abused him, cursed at him, and belittled him. The little boy lived in constant fear of her next explosion and suffered deep emotional pain from her abuse She got help for her anger, repented of her sin and began living rightly before God and her son. Despite this, her son was remote as he grew up and that did not change in his adulthood. Their contact is infrequent and there is no depth to their relationship. Mother’s Day is a painful reminder of her past.
Patty got pregnant when she was 20 years old and single. Her boyfriend didn’t want her to have the baby and threatened to break up with her if she kept it. Her parents urged her to abort the baby because they wanted her to finish school and get on with her life. Reluctantly, she went ahead and had the abortion at 10 weeks pregnant. Instantly, Patty realized her mistake and even while laying on the table in the abortuary began screaming for her baby to be put back. She was inconsolable for weeks after the abortion, and didn’t even notice when her boyfriend stopped coming around. A year later, Patty is a shell of who she once was. Mother’s Day is a reminder of what she’s done.
Each of these women wish Mother’s Day was erased from the calendar. They dread it, they grieve over their failings, and they wish with all they are that they could go back and do things differently.
God has compassion on you, Christian sister, and He will not turn His back on you because of His Son.
But You, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,Slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth. Psalm 86:15 (NASB)
Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him. For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust. Psalm 103: 13 (NASB)
If I had the ability, I would visit with you and bring you an armful of purple roses as a reminder that your heavenly Father does love you. He does cherish you, He loves you despite your failings and your deep and grievous sin. His desire is you repent if you are in the midst of behaviors and activities that are sinful, and turn to Him. If you have repented, remember that your sin is as far from you as the east is from the west.
Everyone whom the Father gives me will come to me, and the one who comes to me I will never send away. John 6:37 (NET)
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