There was a time I replaced my mom with God.
She knew it, I knew it, and I know now, it wasn’t the same thing as putting God first in my life. It was a form of giving up (on our relationship).
I sent her Christmas cards and gifts every year, and she did the same for me. We stayed in touch, told each other “I love you” but we both knew, there was a big chasm between us. I will call it “the great divide.”
I really love my Mom. And she really loves me. We had had our trials through the years, and both of us have felt misunderstood, hurt and even trampled at times, by the other. Now we are on a path to restoration. She lives closer, so now we can talk more, and I find that communication in person is far better than what we could ever achieve by letter, or even on the phone.
I think a lot of people try to give their kids what they did not have (growing up) but many do not see how that can make parents feel a little rejected. In making different choices and not holding to what we are taught, it is kind of like saying, “Your way is not the right way,” whether we say those words or not.
My Mom taught me to write thank you cards, and appreciate every gift I was given. “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth,” was a favorite saying, and one I never quite understood.
As a teenager, I did not understand money being tight, nor did I have any idea how very hard it is (or can be) for parents to come up with Christmas money to “make our dreams come true.”
In the show “Little house on the Prairie” we see how grateful the kids are for a tin cup and a piece of candy, but at that time in history, most were poor (out on the prairie) and only a rare few had more than their daily bread. As the prosperous 80’s came forth, then the 90’s, kids were not so grateful for “less,” for the most part. The continual message was, “If they love you, you will get what you want.”
Television shows depicted “all your dreams coming true” at Christmas (Miracle on 34th street is one example) those who have sponge type personalities like myself, well we took it all to heart. “All my dreams can come true, and I’m sticking to it!” was the motto of many. Even something as simple as that, can become an idol.
How do I know? Because, I did it (at one time). If my dream of getting just what I want for Christmas (or any other time) leads me to stomp on people’s hearts, trample them down, and cease to care how they feel, well “Houston” we may have a problem.
Mom sent me boxes every year, but this one Year I recall, she really outdid herself. She sent a pond with a bear skating on it, (I still have it do this day). She sent grand gifts, a card that played music, all kinds of (wonderful) things.
Man, it hurts to admit this but, I had my eye on what others (in the church) had by this time, and I was fully gone into the ‘all your dreams can come true” mentality. I-will-Prosper-thinking (big time!).
I wasn’t very thankful (as I should have been) for the love that she put in those presents.
I was fully gone in my elitism, (Holier than thou) because I went to church all the time, and she didn’t.
I had my eyes on those who had more (and I was going to have it too!).
I believed if she really loved me, she would get me exactly what I wanted.
What I am trying to say is, I was bad at honoring my Mom, and in my quest to follow Jesus, I stopped listening to her. Nobody wants to admit they have become an elitist, partial-Pharisee, or holier-than thou in their attitude.
The especially “spiritual” seem the most prone to resisting correction, unless it comes straight from God himself. The truth is God can even use a donkey to rebuke us. (Story of Balaam, Numbers 22:28).
I still loved her, but how could she see it? I rejected almost everything she had taught me to be.
We can’t change the past, but we can be restored.
I think the biggest key to seeing restoration of our own soul(s) is to realize we continually need changing, healing, and sometimes even “attitude adjustments”.
Like the story of Balaam and his donkey, we can be all fired sure we are on the right path, but sometimes we are really fighting God as he directs us toward the one thing we don’t want to do to receive our healing. Getting humble. Humble hurts! But it’s worth it my friends. Sometimes we just need to stop and realize; it wasn’t all them. Look past our own hurt and see “it takes two to tango.” With Love,
Jesus talking to the Pharisees
“ But, you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is Corban (that is, devoted to God)— 12 then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother.” Mark 7: 11-12
Ephesians 6:2 “. 2 “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.”