Billie Chesney tells a great story in Chicken Soup for the Mother’s Soul of the first time she cared for her granddaughter. She calls her story, “I Was Born for this Job.”
As a novice grandma, I eagerly looked forward to the first time I’d hear, “Mom, can you keep the baby for a couple days?” My response? “How soon can you get here?”
The calendar was cleared of bridge clubs and tennis matches. The crib was set up in the guest room, and friends were put on alert that I would be holding open house for the debut of our little princess.
The new parents arrived with a two-week supply of clothes, enough disposable diapers to soak up the Mississippi, stroller, car seat, an
itinerary of their hourly whereabouts for the next two days, and six pages of instructions.
I was up at 5:30 that first day. She made me sit and watch her breathe until 6:45. My beautiful granddaughter and I had a wonderful day. I dressed her up in her finest, dance around the living room and strolled up and down the block. She responded beautifully for all the potential grandmothers who dropped by, then she slept most of the afternoon, no doubt worn out from being adorable. What a joyful experience - pleasuring in that first grandchild.”
I know grandmothers (as well as moms) get tired and exasperated caring for their grandchildren (or children as the case may be). There are times when baby does not let you watch her breathe for an hour and fifteen minutes before waking with a smile. There are times when baby will not let you breathe. But this story captures the heart of motherhood, the delight of loving your child.
I know you feel that delight. I’ve seen it in the faces of moms and dads when they pick up their kids at children’s choir. There is something in their eyes that says, “That one is my prize.”
That love and selfless giving is why we honor mothers on Mother’s Day. Its not because moms are perfect, its because they keep loving us in spite of our imperfections.
One more thought. I want to remind you that the love we honor on Mother’s Day is only a dim reflection of the love of God for each of us. You are his child, his daughter, his son, and he delights in you. He cares very much how we live, but he never stops loving us. And in his love and grace we have the power to live the kind of life that will put a smile on his face.
Remember that a mother’s love is a gift from God and that God’s love is stronger, and purer still.
God’s grace and peace,
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