OUR MOTHERS OF FAITH
The kind lady who wrote this story seems to have not signed her name on purpose. After reading this you’ll know why. The Bible tells us that having faith is believing what you cannot see. You just know by faith that it’s there. In many cases, our Mothers were believed to be there for us by faith. Let this woman’s story tell you her experience about being a Mother by Faith.
She said it all began to make sense to her one day, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids walked into the room while she was on the phone and without even looking at her asked to be taken to the mall. Inside she was thinking, “Can’t you see I’m on the phone?” Obviously not; no one can see if she’s on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on her head in the corner, because no one could see her at all. She was invisible! The invisible Mom!
Some days she was only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days she felt like being an object of artificial intelligence. She was a clock, “What time is it?” She was a TV guide, “What number is the Disney Channel?” She was an Uber driver, “Please pick me up around 5:30, please.” Some days she was a crystal ball; “Where’s my other sock?, Where’s my phone?, What’s for dinner?”
She was certain that hers were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music, and Early American literature – but now they were covered with peanut butter and jelly, macaroni and cheese, pouring Kool Aid or Seven-up into glasses.
One night, a group of her friends were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. She just got back from a fabulous trip, and she telling everyone about the hotel she stayed in, the food she ate, the sights she saw, etc. While sitting there, this lady looked around at the others whose kids were already grown and were thinking of taking the same trip. She suddenly realized she was feeling sorry for herself.
It was then that her friend who just returned from England handed her a beautifully wrapped package, and said, “I brought you this just for you.” It was a book on the magnificent cathedrals of Europe. This lady wasn’t exactly sure why she was giving it to her until she read the inscription: “With admiration for the greatness of what you are building that no one sees.”
It finally all came together in the days following, when she would read – every free minute she had. And there she discovered what would become for her, four life-changing truths, after which she could pattern her work:
- No one can say who built the great cathedrals of Europe – we have no record of their names.
- These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
- They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
- The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.
What struck her most was a story in the book that told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, “Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof, No one will ever see it?” The workman replied, “Because God sees it.”
She closed the book, feeling the missing pieces fall into place in her heart and mind. It was almost as if she heard God whispering to her, “I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does.” No act of kindness you’ve done, no sequin you’ve sewn on a dress, no cupcake you’ve baked, no sleepovers for her daughters friends that she made a happy occasion by serving sandwiches and doughnuts, no last minute errand is too small for Me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can’t see right now what it will become until I show it to you some day.
She developed right perspective after she saw herself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals would ever be completed in one’s lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.
When she really thought about it, she didn’t want her daughter to tell her friends that her mother was inviting her home from college for Thanksgiving, and letting them know: “My Mom gets up at four in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.” That would mean she was building a monument to herself. She just wanted her to come home of her own free will. And then, if there is anything more to say to her friends, she’d say, “You’re gonna love my Mom!”
To all the mothers on this coming Mother’s Day, you are building magnificent cathedrals. You must remain unseen if you’re doing it the right way. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what you have built, but at the beauty it has added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers like yourselves.
But keep in mind, there’s One to whom you are not invisible, and that’s your heavenly Father. Jesus said He was going away to prepare a place for all of us. But, in using our imagination, once it’s prepared, the Father will be your personal decorator. And don’t be surprised if on all the walls are pictures of you doing all the things you did for your husband, children, neighbors, friends, church and God. They will be eternal precious memories that bring you everlasting joy. – Dr. Robert R Seyda