ECCLESIASTES 4:9-10 AMP
“Two are better than one because they have a more satisfying return for their labor; for if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and does not have another to lift him up.”
Over a year ago I watched my friend minister to her mother. She hovered over her hospital bed, fed her with spoonfulls and played sermons from her favorite preacher online. They prayed together and she tended to her every want and need. I watched from my side of the hospital room in awe, knowing their history, knowing God was teaching me something.
He was teaching me forgiveness.
I knew in my heart that at that point in my life, I could not do what she was doing. I could not tend to my own mother with such care and intimacy. I had too much pain in my heart. Little did I know, I would actually experience the loss of my mother before she would lose her own. While my friend was in a long-term care situation, my experience was sudden and unexpected. Yes, my mother had been sick for a long time, but that was nothing new. She had been around for the last 20 years with her illness, why would I expect her not to be around for 20 more?
This weekend was my friend’s first Mother’s Day without her mom. It was on my heart to spend the weekend with her. I really only had 8 months under my belt of walking this unique path before her, but that seemed to be enough for Holy Spirit. Indeed He had used me to walk with her last year through this experience, while I myself was still grieving.
I myself am still grieving.
But we made it through. We attended a women’s event that talked about friendship and sisterhood and God’s intent for both. We dialogued about our mothers and how we were continuing their legacies. I was in awe to see how many similarities we had with our journeys. In so many ways we were experiencing the exact same path.
She had a list of what she wanted to do and I strived to make those things happen. Good food, good movies, good company. I only had one thing on my heart and that was a 90’s R&B throwback concert from a group I grew up enjoying. I knew that if my mom were here, that’s what we would have done.
So that’s what we did.
I’ll be honest and say I cringed every time I heard those words, “Happy Mother’s Day!”. I was annoyed every time I saw others posting their pictures of their happy families that were so full and overflowing.
There was no way around it, their cups were overflowing in an area where mine ran dry.
We made the best of what we had. While at the concert the group we saw talked about family and having your family here with you. Well, my friend and I had unique situations with our families. I placed my hands on the women beside me. They were now my family.
This season has been eye opening on many levels. I have learned not to be presumptuous with God (a continuous lesson). I have learned that the borders to His way are much farther out then I would have dreamed. He does things in the way He chooses. Especially with His chosen.
While at the church service we went to yesterday a young mother and wife shared her heart about what God was teaching her in this season of motherhood. She had devastating events happen with her children and was wrestling with fears and insecurities and hurt. But in the midst of those circumstances she was learning joy in the journey. That was exactly what He has been teaching me.
Joy in the journey.
I realize He can teach His children the same lesson while walking through extremely different circumstances. We can feel the same pain, the same loss, even though we do not have the same journey. We are individually made and need different things to grow. My heart is now tender towards those who experience suffering and pain from whatever source of devastation in this world. Indeed, there seem to be so many sources.
While standing there yesterday at the church service, I marveled at God. He walked me to this place in my journey I never thought He would allow. My friend felt the same. He walked us to this place and we were in shock. Had we not been faithful? Had we not been promised to reap? But instead we were called to continue being pruned. To experience what some will never experience. At least in this area.
I worshipped at the service. My friend did too. We worshipped our way through the service celebrating mothers. And when the worship leader asked only the mothers to sing, I listened for my own. I know she is in the eternals, cheering me on. I know she is more alive than I am at this time, and I know she is singing over me, joining all the mothers, singing over their daughters. I had to believe that in that moment, because I did not have her to experience it in the natural.
I realize I am healing now. There is no way I could have raised my hands the way I did at the service a year ago or even a month ago. I would have been too afraid. How could I open my heart to surrender all when now I know more of what the cost entails? But I was able to. And it is because I am healing.
He did not do things at all the way I expected. He did things His way. He provided family His way. He gave provision His way.
My heart still longs for those promises He gave years ago. It still desires what I see so many around me receiving. But I am realizing what I have been being taught for so many years now.
I am an eternal being.
I am a citizen of heaven.
This is not my home.
But one day I will be home. One day I will experience the fulfillment of all I desire, all that He promised.
And that has to be enough.
He has to be enough.