With this devotional blog being for the month of May, I feel the Lord is directing me to honor mothers by writing about one special mother I know.
The scriptures tell us in Isaiah 55:8: "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord." And in Jeremiah 29:11: "For I know the thoughts I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you an expected end."
Sometimes we do not understand why things happen and we question God. I know God knows best and he knows our future. So I want to tell you about my sister, Becky.
She was the mother of two sons, Matthew and Mark. When Matthew was born, he was very ill. He had diabetes, with diarrhea among the symptoms. He was diagnosed with a disease so rare that it did not have a name. He was rushed to Cincinnati Children's Hospital in the governor's private jet. This disease affected his immune system. This child endured so much, but he seemed to be a happy baby, even when he had to have an IV pole to push when he finally began to walk. Matthew did not live long past his second birthday. Most of those two years were spent in the hospital.
About three months before Matthew died, Becky gave birth to Mark. The day Matthew died, his daddy was holding him and Matthew's last word was "Jesus". I believe that is who he saw as his life left his little body. Just days after Matthew's funeral, Mark began showing symptoms of the same disease Matthew had. Doctors confirmed it and this news was so devastating to the already grieving parents.
Mark lived to be nine years old. He was in and out of the hospital during those years. But he was pretty much your normal child and was able to attend school and have friends and lived an almost normal life. He did have to endure insulin shots, meds, checking blood sugars and doctors appointments and hospital stays, as well as symptoms of the disease.
The November that he turned nine, he went to Children's Hospital in Cincinnati to have a bone marrow transplant. This was a very long stay and Becky stayed with him throughout this period while David traveled back and forth so he could continue working. It looked like the transplant was going to work, but then things took a turnaround. On the day before Mother's Day in May, I went to Cincinnati with my son Alex and my dad to visit Mark because we knew he was not doing well. Little did we know that when we arrived that Becky would tell us that their pastor was on his way because they were taking Mark off all the machines because his oxygen level was dropping and there was no hope of his surviving. We stayed with Becky and David and it was a tough thing to do. But as we watched them lay Mark in his mother's arms, my heart broke and I wanted to make it better, but I couldn't. She held him until he died, but there was such a peace in that room, I knew that the Lord was present. So on the day before Mother's Day, Mark joined his brother in heaven.
On the day of Mark's funeral, the church youth group called Awanas had their meeting at the church. The pastor told the youth about Mark and what a courageous child he was and how he was now in heaven. Several of the youth went forward to be saved. What an awesome testimony that was.
Now Becky and David had no children, and it seemed unlikely that they could have more. They were told that if they had any more babies, it could turn out the same way. So their thoughts turned toward adoption. God provided a way for them to go to China and adopt a little girl who was around two years old and had been abandoned at birth. Bethany Grace was adopted and came home with her new parents where she is growing up to be a happy child of ten years old now. She is in church with her parents and has been born again and baptized. She has a chance to have a good life she may not have otherwise had.
This story is a bittersweet one. If Matthew and Mark were still alive, then Bethany would not be here and given a happy life. But as the Bible says in Psalms 30:5, "weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning." So Becky's greatest loss as a mother was turned around into something good. Today, I give thanks and praises for the work God has done in my sister's life. It has not been easy, but she has trusted God's wisdom and He gave her faith and strength over the years. This story has been condensed, but there is so much more that can be told. But I want to close with the following.
A mother's heart is a tender heart filled with love from God. A special love only a mother can possess. Mothers are a special breed with the strength of Superman if the need arises, but with a gentle angel's touch when her child is hurting. A mother makes many sacrifices for her family, but it comes from the heart God gives her. Becky has sacrificed a lot over the years, but she forges ahead and trusts God that she will make it and she knows in her heart the day is coming soon that she will be reunited with her sons. Great is her reward. Happy Mother's Day !!!!!
I feel that I need to add this story. The Lord reminded me of this and I know He wants it added.
"When God Made Mothers"
By the time the Lord made mothers, he was into the sixth day working overtime. An angel appeared and said "Why are you spending so much time on this one?" And the Lord answered and said, "Have you read the spec sheet on her? She has to be completely washable, but not plastic; run on black coffee and leftovers; have a lap that can hold three children at one time and that disappears when she stands up; have a kiss that can cure anything from a scraped knee to a broken heart; and have six pairs of hands."
The angel was astounded at the requirements for this one. "Six pairs of hands! No way!" said the angel. The Lord replied, "Oh, it's not the hands that are the problem; it's the three pairs of eyes that mothers must have!”
"And that's on the standard model?" the angel asked. The Lord nodded in agreement. "Yep, one pair of eyes is to see through the closed door as she asks her children what they are doing even though she already knows. Another pair in the back of her head is to see what she needs to know even though no one thinks she can. And the third pair is here in the front of her head. They are looking for an errant child and saying that she understands and loves him or her without even saying a single word."
The angel tried to stop the Lord. "This is too much work for one day. Wait until tomorrow to finish." "But I can't!" the Lord protested, "I am so close to finishing this creation that is so close to my heart. She already heals herself when she is sick and can feed a family of six on a pound of hamburger and can get a nine year old to stand in the shower." The angel moved closer and touched the woman. "But you have made her so soft, Lord." "She is soft," the Lord agreed, "But I have also made her tough. You have no idea what she can endure or accomplish." "Will she be able to think?" asked the angel. The Lord replied, "Not only will she be able to think, she will be able to reason, and negotiate."
The angel then noticed something and reached out and touched the woman's cheek. "Oops, it looks like you have a leak with this model. I told you that you were trying to put too much into this one." "That's not a leak," the Lord objected. "That's a tear!" "What's the tear for?" the angel asked.
The Lord said, "The tear is her way of expressing her joy, her sorrow, her disappointment, her pain, her loneliness, her grief, and her pride." The Lord said. The angel was impressed. "You are a genius, Lord. You thought of everything for this one. You even created the tear!" The Lord looked at the angel and smiled and said, "I’m afraid you are wrong again, my friend. I created the woman, but she created the tear!"
Author: Erma Bombeck