Wrapped in ribbon and stacked in boxes of hope in an old chest that she gave me, mother's letters rest, but her words still jump, and run, and gather speed with each passing year of my life. I have them all - every single letter or card she ever gave me. Somehow the good Lord saw fit long ago to give her words that I would need on numerous occasions in my life. I have often pulled out her hand-written notes to read over and over when I needed encouragement over the years. I remember holding her written voice in my hands and listening, not always taking heed, but knowing the words were rich and worthy. Now I take them out of my blessing box (That's what I call that special box that holds all things dear.), and I read the words as I ponder Mother's Day, and then I read them to her over the phone. And now I see how the Lord saw fit long ago to give her words that she would need one day. She spoke words long ago to minister healing into my heart and now they are bouncing back off the doorways of time right back into her very own soul as I read, and she listens, and she can hardly believe she wrote the words. Faith still comes for this 83 year old, but it comes harder and in fits and starts as the trials get deeper and the climb gets steeper.
When I was 22 and a senior in college, I went through a very difficult time. These are just three of the notes that she wrote to me that year, but they are some of the favorite words I have received over time. Maybe these words of hope will bring you or someone you love a similar comfort to that which I have found in them.
September 5, 1988
My dear Steph,
It grieves me and makes me feel sad that you are having these hard times to go through. I guess mothers are never ready to see their children suffer. I am praying much for you, and if your suffering causes you to depend on Christ and Him alone, then all the heartache will be worth it. You are loved and little do you know the wonderful things God has in store for you if you will but trust and obey.
Under separate cover you will receive your new Bible. Digest the words you read and let the Holy Spirit speak to you and guide you.
Love & Prayers
I think of you so much and pray for you with every thought.
Steph, it takes a long time for a pearl to be formed, and the beauty and value of that pearl depends on the color of the mollusk in which it is found - the same with a life. The beauty of a life depends on the character of the one in which it is found - and that one is Jesus. Even though on the outside that mollusk is going through all kinds of trauma, deep inside is a beautiful and precious gem being formed. I am confident the same is happening with you as long as you allow Christ to enfold you with His love, care and protection.
Praise Him for all He is doing in your life. He is worthy to be praised. He is altogether lovely. He is truth. He has promised to never leave you nor forsake you. Exert faith Steph, even when things look hopeless - that is real faith. It doesn't take much faith when we can see. Great faith comes when we can't see.
Jesus can be trusted. You can rest in that. Try to learn all you can about Him.
P.S. Jesus heals the broken-hearted, but He wants all the pieces.
Dear Stephanie, (Mom always spelled my name with an "e" on the end even though it doesn't have one.)
Well, this will probably be my last letter to you during your college career. It's been a growing up and maturing time - hard times, good times - sad times, happy times - and I've been emotionally up and down right along with you. This is another milestone completed. Not the last one, but a very important one. I am proud of you and so is Daddy. You've hung in there through some very hard times and probably no one realizes that like you do. Seeing you grow spiritually and learning to fully trust Jesus is most gratifying to us. You don't need to fear what comes next, because the Christ we serve has promised to direct our paths and to never leave us nor forsake us. God is faithful. "And I am sure that he who has begun a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." Phil. 1-6.
You can approach the future with confidence "for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self control." II Tim . 1:7.
Stephanie, you have many wonderful qualities. Just remember, Satan works hardest on those that can be the greatest blessing so keep your hand in God's. Don't struggle. You can know peace as He leads you.
I love you.
See you in a few days!
Happy Mother's Day to all of you Mothers that are reading this! May the words of your mouths and the meditations of your hearts be acceptable in his sight, and may you speak truth and life and love into the lives of your children, and may they be words of eternal value that will speak to them again and again throughout the years. May you be blessed because you've been a blessing