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After Mother's Day

I know it's the day after that very special day when we focus on our mothers (or special aunts or female mentors who have helped us learn and grow along the way). Although I'm late, I feel a yearning to send kudos and encouragement to every mother, or stand-in mom, out there.

I don’t know why God blessed me with the children my husband and I have. He must have known, in His great almightyness (I know ... not exactly a word but I like it), that I’d often botch up mothering our kids, but He still saw fit to send me three treasures.

I was accused of “sweating the small stuff” more than once, as my children grew. Sometimes that came from my husband, in a more accusatory manner. I didn’t appreciate that but what irked me, even more, was that I knew he was right. I often lost-it over a bedroom left messy or dishes not done. I won't take the time to psychoanalyze that now, but there it is. Mistakes were made, apologies were given and forgiveness was received.

Our later grown, eldest daughter told me this: “Mom, you did sweat the small stuff more often than maybe you should have, but when we had bigger issues and more serious stuff happening, you kept your act together and remained calm. That’s when it really counted.”

(That’s still one of the biggest compliments I’ve ever received, and I’m thankful I can still remember it. LOL)

Being a mother is difficult work. When those babies are small, they’re so sweet and innocent.

Admittedly, it’s all sleepless nights and feeds and diapers, until you think you might lose your mind, but you can hold them in your arms and keep them safe.

Then they hit their teens and you wish you could go back to the other kind of sleepless nights. Perhaps the drooling wasn’t so bad, compared to the arguing coming from those same mouths now.

Thankfully, it doesn’t take long until they become young adults. You enjoy them on a much more even playing field and they, especially after having their own children, appreciate you on a whole new level. They finally “get” you. But instead of feeling as you thought you might when you said, "Just wait until you have kids," you empathize and cry with them in their frustrations as they raise your grandchildren.

The circle of life is intriguing and challenging, certainly fraught with concerns and prayers that all will be well.

The world isn’t becoming a safer or better place. More confusion than ever before has raised up issues that my generation didn’t have to concern ourselves much with, at all.

Perhaps, in the overwhelmingness that may appear to be our future, you find yourself anxious and worried for your children but … take heart!

God has always known the world would become like this in 2023. He knew it before He created it, and us. He loves you and your children and He knew about all of this … long before we came to be.

I encourage you to put and keep your faith in Him — the God of creation and all good things!

We may have to fight harder now, for what is right and good and pure, but that’s okay. One day at a time, and with faith that He holds us, we will move forward for ourselves and for our children.

Philippians 4:8 (KJV) “… whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which you have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.”

Isaiah 41:10 (NIV) “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

If you're reading this, know I've prayed for you and your children today.

Pattie Janzen

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