I was saved when I was ten years old. We lived in Rochester, Illinois at the time, and my Dad had had a dramatic conversion after an encounter with a tract-giving Christian on a corner in Springfield, Illinois. My Dad was fetching medicine for my little brother. He came home and threw away the keg of beer in the frig. He told us about talking with this man on a street corner in Springfield, and how the man helped him look up a church and when my Dad took us by the little Baptist church to talk to the pastor, the pastor's wife explained The Gospel to me and my sister. She explained how Jesus had died on the cross for my sins, and by trusting in Jesus, I could receive eternal life and spend eternity in heaven forever.
I believed. Jesus did all the work of salvation on the cross, and The Gospel is that good news, and a free gift.
Even as a small child on a trike, I had had that bad dream of hell fire on the other side of a fence, and the very real fear of that fire. I did not want to go to Hell. And I knew I was a sinner. My Dad's dad had had to point out to me often not to be mean to my sister. And my momma had to tell me often not to be sassy.
Our family started attending that little Baptist church and I started a life-long adventure of learning about God from His Precious Word, the Bible. Throughout the rest of my childhood and teenage years, our family moved every few years, but we always found a church that taught the Bible. During one move to a little town called Monticello in Illinois my freshman year of high school, we had trouble with the emphasis at the two churches in Monticello. And my Dad started listening to the tapes from a church in Houston. We visited that church and moved to Houston my sophomore year, and there is where I met my husband. While my husband and I did not write and date very long before getting married, because we had that foundation of having learned the Bible and how important it was to not just eat nutritious food every day, but feed on God's Word everyday, we had the wonderful foundation for a good and long marriage.
When our pastor encouraged us to love God, there was a time when I was newly married, that I listened and learned, but fell short in the loving God part. I was angry at God. Angry that God allowed evil and injustice, and suffering. And as a new mom, it made no sense to me that God could not get his creatures to get along better, as a mom that controls her toddlers. Why couldn't God reach down and prevent calamities between people, and natural disasters?? And when it came time to teach my sons a love of God and a love of learning His Word, I discovered I could not teach what I did not have.
With much soul searching, and prayer, and journaling and good counsel from my patient husband, and mostly admitting to God that I was mad at Him, and how stupid was that, would He please remove my pride and anger and give me His supernatural love?? God answers that prayer daily. Whenever I ask.
Sometimes I am slow to realize I am angry. Sometimes when dear husband points it out, I am still slow to let go and ask God for help. I can't remove it on my own. And the anger becomes a plug that blocks all peace and contentment and thankfulness. When I cannot sing--sometimes that is a sign.
So, I think God used motherhood to bring me back. And help me grow as a person. God created motherhood. And helps me do this life-long job.
I can't wait to learn in heaven-home just how moms throughout the ages have done this job. Starting with Eve, and to the end of the book of Revelation, the profession of mom is how God designed order, stability, and the protection of children. God gave us this gift of mothering which includes nurturing, teaching, training, watching over, and encouraging a baby into toddlerhood and small child into adulthood. As we release our hold, and present grown productive citizens into society, as we teach and encourage younger moms to love their husbands and love their children, our jobs never end. We get to love and persevere until the end.
Thank You, God for the gift and job of motherhood.