At church, I feel like I’ve been gyrating on a merry-go-round at top speed. And now God wants me to stand up and worship? I glance at my wife, her eyes closed, singing. She has a touch of silver in her hair from 44 years of riding the merry-go-round with me, day-in and day-out.
Thank God for mothers.
My daughter-in-law hands me a granddaughter. She needs to make a diaper run to the bathroom with my grandson. They trot through the same foyer doors that my family has used for 12 years–and I feel my balance returning. I begin to worship as my granddaughter sings, her cheek next to my scratchy beard.
Thank God for mothers.
Mothers in my life keep me grounded. They love their family fiercely and wrap their husbands in crazy, passionate loyalty. They would follow their men anywhere (and have). Knowing this, us men tread carefully, striving to be fathers that mothers can trust.
I have five motherly mothers in my life, all of whom keep me balanced after spinning on life’s merry-go-round. Our oldest mother is 92, and she reminds us fathers that we must be men that her grandchildren can respect.
Her unspoken motherly advice:
Any woman can become a mother, but being MOTHERLY is a different kettle of fish. Motherly isn’t about paying for college or helping Dad maintain a nice house. It isn’t “supplementing” income for vacations.
Being motherly is:
refusing to build a career during the years when my sister and I needed her close.
letting me buy a dog when we could barely afford food.
taking on the role of Dad, when it was hard enough being a mom.
giving me her last five bucks when I chose to leave town on a Greyhound bus.
supporting me when I was determined to marry at 18, and my bride was 17.
Break it down a little more:
motherly is making a million meals for bunches of noisy grandkids–and enjoying it!
motherly is starving in businesses right along with a son with big ideas.
motherly is loving me unconditionally for 62 years.
motherly is rowing against the currents of a godless heritage to introduce Jesus to her family.
It may sound peculiar, but from our cherished moms, us men are learning to be motherly too.
I Thes. 2:7-8
As apostles of Christ we certainly had a right to make some demands of you, but instead we were like children among you. Or we were like a mother feeding and caring for her own children. We loved you so much that we shared with you not only God’s Good News but our own lives, too [Paul to the Thessalonians].