The first quote she used took my breath away and stopped me right in my tracks: “I learned more about Christianity from my mother than from all the theologians in England.” —John Wesley
What. an. enormous. responsibility. we. have. been. given.
When I read those words, I instantly panicked, thinking of all the many ways I have messed up.
But almost immediately, Jesus reminded me that I am His “Plan A” for Josh and Julia….that He appointed me to this role and when He did it, He already knew everything about me, good and bad (Psalm 139:1-5).
Yet He still qualified me because He is the Redeemer: He takes my mistakes, covers them with His wondrous grace, transforms them, and gives beauty for ashes.
Always and forever, He speaks grace to me.
Lord, never let me forget the awesome responsibility You have given me…and let me never stop looking to You for Your ever-present help!
Ann speaks of becoming “a velveteen mother—made real by the years…worn and weathered down to the exquisite beauty of the frame of the Cross.”
The longer I am a mother, the more passionate I am about leaving that very legacy for my children. All that I could teach them, all that I could dream for them, all that I could desire for them boils down to one grand, glorious Name: Jesus.
To the best of my ability, I have tried to show them the Savior who has so radically changed my life.
I have taught them to delight in nature which reveals His beauty and creativity.
I have studied His Word with them and shown them how to apply it to their lives.
I have prayed with them over things big and small.
I have assured them of His faithfulness and goodness in the midst of pain and confusion.
I have had to humble myself and ask their forgiveness and have been gracious when they have asked for mine.
I have tried to teach them His ways and remind them of His love for the unlovely.
I have taught them to trust His plan and His timing when it differs radically from theirs.
When we have laughed so hard that our stomachs hurt and tears stream from our eyes, I have reminded them that He is a God who smiles and laughs.
I have shown them how I get back up when I’ve blown it.
I have attempted to open their eyes to the world beyond their comfortable lives in America to the enormous need and desperation around the globe.
I have reminded them that this world is not their home. It is not all there is…and that this life is a journey that ends in seeing the face of the One who loved them enough to die for them.
Most of all, I have endeavored to teach them to cherish the cross. The cross represents their hope, their freedom, their gateway to joy, their dignity, the end of their shame, their victory, their forgiveness, their peace, their promise of eternal life, their beautiful redemption.
I have done none of this perfectly. But I have done it passionately.
As the years have passed, I pray that they have seen less of me and more of Jesus.
Jesus has given me these children.
I have given them Jesus.
And they have given me joy.