My mother never met a stranger. She met many strange people but talked to them any way (I’ve learned those often make for the best conversations).
As a child, I didn’t appreciate it as I should have. Of course, that is true about many things. My mom came from a broken home and spent much of her childhood bouncing between the homes of her older siblings. I didn’t appreciate that either. Her faith background was a “Baskin Robbins 31 Flavor” mix of this and that. As I’ve grown older, I’ve grown to appreciate that more.
Though my mom died in 1995, her influence in my life is ever-present. My gift of gab, also known as preaching, came from her. Her values, her zest for life, her loyalty to people … These have stayed with me. Our family even has two cats today (thanks, mom).
To be honest, not all Mother’s Days since 1995 have been easy. Both of our daughters were born after mom’s death; many times I have lamented that Hannah and Hope never knew my mom and got to experience her influence first-hand. They never had the opportunity to spend time in the kitchen with her or to see her greet a stranger. I’m sure if we had been at her house in the spring, they would have planted flowers with her.
There’s a good chance, if she were still alive, they might even like bluegrass music.
But I know they do experience her influence – through me, through my values, my stories. I need to tell more stories.
The hope of the Christian faith is that this life is not all there this. We believe in resurrection. We believe in heaven, that great eternal reunion when all God’s children – mom, dad, Hannah and Hope – will meet for the first time. What a great day that will be.