To my Mama...and all the other Women
You needn't be a Mom to be celebrated today. You needn't have given birth to someone to have a positive impact on their life. You can influence kids without being called “Mommy”. This is for those women, the teacher’s and friends, the extended family and neighbors who have influenced me. They've shaped me and are part of who I am today.
So while we of course honor Mother’s today… I want to honor those of you who aren't- and thank you.
My Mom is one in a million- I want to be like her when I grow up. I think of her selfless love, her joy that comes only from the Lord, her gift of encouragement, her discernment of people and her laugh that echoes the halls. I want all of it ( I already know I have her laugh so that’s covered) Watching her walk through cancer and now helping other’s through that journey has been one of the biggest blessings in my life.
There are other women in my life that have shaped me. Some of them are Mom’s and some are not. I want to honor those women too…because they have made me who I am today.
My Sunday school teacher’s Luwayne and Mary from Willakenzie in Eugene. I remember the songs, the flannel board stories, the Christmas programs.
Kathy, the Mom of my dearest childhood friend and her silly socks, her gentle words, her treating me as one of her own. Today she shows me what a wife married to a Pastor looks like. Weathering the storm and standing by your man and your ministry.
I think about Marilynwho is with Jesus now, where she sat in church, how she loved my family and took care of me while my sister was being born. A Grandmother- but not by blood.
I think about my Kindergarten teacher, Ms. Olsen and how she loved me. How she made me feel special.
My music teacher in grades Kindergarten-Third, Mrs. Adams- and how I knew I was her favorite. I couldn't sing but she made me feel like I could do anything…her class was always open to me and her hugs were the best.
My last teacher in Eugene, Mrs. Henry. I didn't even finish my whole third grade year, but she came to my wedding almost 10 years later. Talk about making an impact. She always stayed in touch and just recently retired. I am sure I am not the only one she made feel so special.
Mrs. Nelson from Howard. She is the first one to call me out as a writer. She helped me get a poem published and to this day I will credit her for fostering in me the love of writing.
When we moved from Eugene to Medford and I thought my life was over, I met Connie. She was the Pastor’s wife of our new church and she saw in me a leader and called me out. She will forever remain one of the most influential people in my life. Watching her own life, modeled before me. The grace, compassion and strength in her helped shape me.
Vikki, she started out mentoring me as a young engaged woman and turned into one of my best friends. Holding me accountable, teaching me gentleness and to love the Word. Everyone needs a Vikki in their life.
My volleyball Coach, Susan. She taught me that I could push myself farther, that I could endure. That I had more in me than I realized.
My math teacher Debbie Knapp. I was horrible at math (still am)…she took extra time to get me through my classes. She was patient and she actually cared that I passed. I will never forget that. And when I accidentally threw a flashlight at her, she still loved me.
The school secretary Kelly Lemley. She was such a supporter of me, in everything I did…and she still does that.
My Literature and Drama teacher, Miss Beeler. She challenged me in my school work, to be disciplined and she saw something in me that gave me the confidence I needed to take hold of a role as a Freshman with gusto. She pushed me and that hasn't gone to waste.
My Mom’s best friend Lynette- she’s been an extension of our family for as long as I can remember. Her love and friendship to our family has taught me that you needn't not be blood related to be family. Being a Mom of two boys, she’s showed me what the future is like, watching her son’s dote on her now is a beautiful thing.
Mary Hixsontaught me about hospitality and continues to teach me that age is not a barrier and that generations can work together in the Kingdom work. She continues to be a source of encouragement and love.
Linda taught me unconditional love as she walked her husband and best friend through cancer and into Heaven. She taught me strength in Jesus as she battled her own cancer shortly thereafter and other than my Mom, she is the one who I clearly see the Joy of the Lord in at all times.
Becky Doud- she taught me to love being a wife and Mom. She taught me about Jesus, about joy, about relishing my role, and how to Worship unabashedly.
Peggy Atkinson taught me what it looks like to stand by your man, especially in the ministry. She’s also loved my man as a son and that will forever impact me.
My Mother-in-Law- her continual sacrifices of love challenge me daily. Her love for Jesus and other’s is infectious. She teaches me to endure.
My Grandma. The definition of strength, and living for the Lord. Her entire life is a story of enduring and trusting the Lord and her legacy carries on.
Kathleen, my best friend since 7th grade. She’s taught me to rely on God when all else fails. She has taught me to live fearless.
These women, and so many more have a piece of my heart and have taught me so much.
So on this day of Mother’s- I want to honor you all. Mother’s and Aunt’s and Sister’s and Grandmother’s, and friends and teachers and mentors. Thank you. Bless you.
Woman... woe-man... whoah, man!
Woman... woe-man... whoah, man!
If you know what movie this is from you are awesome.