Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My Mother's Prayers

As I look back on my life, there is a memory that I cherish and hold dear to my heart. The moments when, as a child, Mom would take me to bed, whisper with me, and end the day in prayer. We never called it "tucking in" as most did. It was the moment Mom would "pray with me." No night was complete unless Mom kneeled at my bedside to pray. It was a security thing for me, at first. After her prayer was finished, she would hug me tight and kiss me. Then before she would leave the room, I would call to her, "I love you Mom" while she replied, "love you too!" "Goodnight, Mom!" "Goodnight!" And yet I still wanted more of her before sleep came. I never wanted her to leave my room. Was there a way I could stall her from leaving the room? "I love you!" I would say quickly and she would poke her head back in the room with that sweet smile and soft reply, "I love you too!" To my regret, she would leave again and for the last time I would say, "Goodnight, mom, I love you!" But it would be too late and she would reply from the hallway, her words reverberating off the high ceiling and walls from the front entrance.

If Mom was busy and told us to go get in bed she would never need to forget to pray; we always reminded her. Though I do not remember any of her prayers, I know they meant a lot. Whenever I had a nightmare and awoke crying, she would be there to tell me about God and that I needed to trust Him. Before leaving me, after I was calmed down, she would pray one last time and my night was complete. I remember one night, after another nightmare. Mom whispering to me that I was not alone, God was with me always. I recalled the words of a song by Judy Rogers about God being like the wind and how I couldn't see it. Often Mom would sing it softly to help sooth me of my fears.

My mother is a very precious woman. Caring, sweet, beautiful, and best of all, comforting. My favorite memories of her when I was ages two to six years old were those blessed moments she spent with me by my bed. She was always there for me when I needed her most. Never a day went by without her songs, stories, meals, and best of all, the bedtime prayers. After leaving one bedroom, she would move to the next room to pray with my brothers. I hated the departure, but I knew she would be there the next night to tuck me in. Later, when I was older, I prayed by myself. I grew up and missed out on the times when Mom would put me to bed. For with the moments before bedtime she also would tell us about Jesus and his dying on the cross and how we needed to believe in him. I still remember telling Mom, "but I do believe in Jesus; I know he died for me." I don't remember when Mom stopped praying with me before bedtime; the transition is lost in my memory, but I know that those were beautiful times I hope never to forget.

I was richly blessed by my mother and our bedtimes prayers. Most children get bedtime stories before going to sleep and a kiss on the forehead, but I would never have desired that over her prayers. My life, as it is now, may never have been the same if it hadn't been for those precious moments with Mom before sleep. God used those times in my life. They were a gift. If the Lord sees fit to provide children in our life, I plan on continuing the legacy of bedtime prayers.

Thank you Mom, for sharing those times with me. They meant and still mean a lot to me. I love you more for the beautiful "tucking in" experience you gave me during my childhood. That was the true love of a mother. When all other items you put on a back burner to be with me.

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