Today is Mother's Day here in Australia and elsewhere around the world; a day to show respect, honour and love to our dear mothers, as well as those women who may not have borne us but have carved their names upon our hearts and become as a mother to us.
What I am sharing today is quite personal, and if not prompted by the Lord I would not be opening myself this way, but perhaps He is looking into a heart, or many hearts, that need to hear?
I've no memory of celebrating a Mother's Day with my own mum as she died soon after my 3rd birthday, but just weeks after turning 18 I stepped into the meadow of lifelong motherhood myself and two months later experienced my very own special day.
It's an incredible thing as a teenager to hold a wee babe in your arms and realise he is yours. The surge of love catches you off guard - there is nothing to compare. You wonder at how your heart can hold such a force of emotion, such a depth of possession, and for the first time you understand the fervour of a lioness protecting her cub.
The years pass, times of joy, times of trial, times of change. More babes fill your womb, weigh in your arms through long sleepless nights, and take a piece of your heart forever.
Over the next twenty years there were long periods of separation and loss with some of my children, and I shall not share that as it's my very personal story which the Lord is still at work in, but the outcome was that Mother's Day became a day of pain and sadness, a day to 'wish away'.
Estrangement from your child/children can come about in many different ways and circumstances, so if you've experienced this too then your story and mine will probably be quite different.
But the pain? The shattering of your heart? That's something you and I may share.
I've not seen some of my children for over a decade, not had any contact at all with one. YET, I have not lost hope.
And that's what I am learning about this Mother's Day.
Don't lose hope. Don't EVER lose hope.
No matter what caused the separation and no matter who's at fault, you cannot go back and change it - but God can change the outcome and the hearts involved.
I was reading "What Happens When Women Walk in Faith" recently and in chapter 13 Lysa TerKeurst talks about Israel's exodus from Egypt. Her description of what they would have felt as they stood before the Red Sea jumped off the page at me, and the Lord used it to drive home a truth about HIS power to change circumstances, and why I must never lose hope.
"The sea in front of them must have looked so big, so dangerous, so immoveable. The army behind them was deadly, horrifying and seemingly unstoppable. But the Lord was bigger than the immoveable and stronger than the unstoppable..."
(extract from "What Happens When Women Walk in Faith" by Lysa Ter Keurst 2005)
Isn't that powerful!?
Do you look at your own situation as though you're standing in front of the impossible?
Lisa goes on to write - "...Israel had no way to escape, but God cut a new path and made a way. Not only did He make a way but He defeated the Egyptians, so as God had promised, Israel never saw those Egyptians again. His strength was perfect. His timing was perfect. His plan was perfect."
This Mother's Day I shall fall to my knees and pray with JOY and HOPE for my estranged children and I shall wait for my seemingly immoveable ocean to part...because with Him nothing is impossible.
I may live through many more Mother's Days with no reconciliation of my estranged children, but that does not mean I should lose hope or stop praying. I shall pray with JOY as long as it takes because I was once estranged from my Heavenly Father and He did not give up on me.
And you know, this isn't about my plan.
This is about His plan, His perfect plan, which is always worth the wait.
Bless you always,
Download the printable Scripture card and devotion HERE.