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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

I always wanted to be just like her...

Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
Deuteronomy 5:16 (NIV)

Today is mommy's birthday. I hope she smiles when she reads this, knowing that while she usually inspires my writing, today it's all about her. I have always wanted to be like her, She is extraordinary. I honor my mother, but today, we're doing it big.

My mother's faith exists on a level that inspires me. I have my faith, taught at her and Dad's knee may God rest his soul, but I still aspire to grow into the warrior she is today. My Gayle and I laugh about my mother's capacity for prayer. There are a few women in our lives, including Mrs. S, whom we call first in crisis. Their capacity to mobilize people to pray, to extend themselves is something we ask God to pour into our lives. These are women who have reached that season. My mama is seasoned. I always wanted to be just like her.

An accomplished pastor's wife, my mother always exhibited the evenness of temperament and  a loving, giving spirit I admire. I long to channel that patience, but for me it does not come as easily. I work at it anyway, because it is so desirable; I have always wanted to be just like her.

My mother's discernment sends me rushing off to seek her judgment. Regularly. Not only is this woman wise, she is clear. She has the God-given capacity to see things because she looks through a prayerful lens. I want that.

A child of the sixties, it was not easy to find images of African-American beauty. My mother's light caramel skin looked very little like the deep chocolate tones of mine. For girls like me, It was the era of lighter was better. I still remember my mother telling me that I was the exact shade of brown she'd always wanted to be. It was one of the most powerful messages she ever gave me, and I'll never forget it. When my daughter was born, I was certain...as a mother, I wanted to be just like her.

Mommy, here and now, while you're here to hear it, I LOVE YOU. (yes, all CAPS). You are amazing, and I'm so glad God picked us to be family. I still want to be just like you. Thank you dad for your remarkable good taste. Thank You Lord, for my mommy, for the new year and new season she's about to walk into, and that I can proclaim it here. My mom is among the best gifts You've ever given me, and Your gifts are good. You, God, are good.

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