When You Miss Mom

On a day when the skin is red (these allergy shots have a way of being memorable) and the heart is raw and needing to take one more step makes the lungs burn, all I really want is Mom instead of being the mom. It’s then I pull out a pot to make this ’cause there’s no way closer to her than a kitchen wafting garlic, tomatoes and the sweet scent of basil.

spaghetti sauce

At the end of gulping it down Hope girl asks what’s for dessert and they, all grown up before my eyes, whip up a memory of picnics gone by near lakes and sandy rivers. Mom would pack these simple treasures of perfection. It looks complicated and oh so fancy when it’s merely a box-mixed-cupcake brimmed with your favorite filling. Tonight it’s what we had in the fridge…fresh strawberries and whip cream dusted with powdered sugar.  (Hope girl’s favorite anything strawberry shortcake.)

image

And because mom hugs are miles away I’m clinging to this tonight:

He tends his flock like a shepherd:
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young. ~Isaiah 40:11

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For Days When the Hampster Gets Stuck in the Stove

Some days miracles happen and the hamster doesn’t fling herself in the ball down a flight of stairs and we make it to the bus with seconds to spare instead of waving down Miss Mary to stop and everyone eats the oatmeal with yummy sighs and shouts of thanks mom and not one peep is heard when hair is brushed and tied up.  Others…well other days like today the hamster escapes the cage (when she should be sleeping and after little man assured me he was her brother’s keeper *just in case* as I shower), ends up inside..YES INSIDE the stove *somehow* and refuses, or forgets or just plain wants to chew on metal all the while earning nuts and peanut butter as a bribe to draw her out, then dashing to the farthest depths of the dark to hide until we take apart the stove to rescue the booger. AND we put the stove back together to find at dinner time, no less, (thank God for microwaves and leftovers…the kind of prayers being hollered out today) that none of the burner’s igniters work and yep! That’s now top of the list for tomorrow. Ahhhhhhh, someone please tell me to breathe, or laugh or shout or whatever it will be that brings a sort of sanity to this all mixed up day.

Then there’s the six allergy shots and an extra hour of waiting in the doctor’s office because they were running behind and I was running behind trying to coax a crazy hamster to play hide and seek another day and in another place, so grocery shopping was crossed from this already messy list and I’m just trying to figure out how lunch will be squeezed into the few remaining seconds before new piano students arrive.  And in a blink this neatly planned day has become convoluted and tangled and I’m a bedraggled, frazzled bundle of exhaustion before the clock strikes 5. Anyone hear me? Anyone there in the same spot today?

What else is one to do but drop to knees and from an honest heart cry to the One who saves? Who hears? Who sees all of me, all of THIS for as Amy Carmichael said “He is first and He is last, and we are gathered up between, as in great arms of eternal lovingkindness” and there is nothing like a cry from a child to bring our Father running for to him it’s a beautiful hallelujah this broken spirit. It’s ironic because we think that what he wants is us going through the motions doing our best to please, attempting a performance without flaws when what it takes is pride that is fractured, that says we aren’t all this, we can’t do it all and then…only then do we learn God-worship for “heart-shattered lives ready for love don’t for a moment escape God’s notice” Ps 51:17 (The Message)

It’s been a messy day. And you know what? Life is messy always has been always will be. But our God is a God who descends into our crazy world and brings Love.  No day is in too big a shamble for redemption for the bigger the mess the greater the Love.  So breathe… heat up the leftovers and pour yourself a cup warm.  It’s all going to be ok because in the end Love wins the day.