By Adrienne L. Hearn, M.S. MFT
It’s May. The weather has gotten warmer and the flowers are blooming. It all reminds me of a line from a popular poem that my mother used to recite when I was a young girl that said, “April showers bring May flowers.” It’s a sweet memory that I have between my mother and me, and I am fortunate to still have her in my life—healthy, happy, and functioning and able to make sweet memories as a grandmother with my 9-year-old daughter. I am especially thankful for this time that God is giving us as the Mother’s Day holiday approaches.
As I pause to appreciate this gift, I also hold a space within my heart for all of those who are also approaching this holiday without the love and warmth of their mothers by their side. Whether it be by death, distance, or some other unfortunate circumstance, this holiday, like all others, can be a trigger for various types of depression when one is faced with being forced to acknowledge the absence of a loved one—especially a mother.
At times like these, the pain can be so heavy that it can make God’s word seem inadequate in doing what it claims to do which is to comfort us in times when we are feeling low. In times like these, it can make the power of God’s word seem cliché. But then again, could it be that God’s intent is not only to comfort us, but also to provide us with a plan to maintain our emotional and mental stability in times when we feel loss and the absence of a loved one? Let me explain.
I came across Psalms 27: 10-11, which says, “Even if my father and mother abandon me, the Lord will hold me close. Teach me how to live, O Lord. Lead me along the right path…” Oftentimes, we can’t imagine all of the ways of God’s methods and means of provision and healing in the parts of our lives that have been ripped apart creating voids that we believe may never be filled.
Although I am fortunate enough to have my own biological mother still living, I remember living in Atlanta where for almost 10 years I struggled as a single mother on my own with no close relatives nearby. Nevertheless, what I discovered is the Lord provided me with several mothers during that time. They would lead me, guide me, feed me, and even provide for me financially when my own mother was not physically present. I always tell people that I have had many mothers.
There have been many women who have poured into me and have spoken words to me at times when my own mother was not able to do so. They encouraged me, praised me, or simply loved on me in a way that calmed my fears or my troubled spirit. They were there for me at times when I’d lost my job, when I needed someone to watch my daughter, when I needed words of wisdom in moments of confusion, or even when I just needed a hug. Even to this day whenever I receive a message from one of my mothers, my heart jumps because I love them so.
I am then reminded of the many ways that God provides for us, and how He always provides a surrogate for us when we’re feeling the absence of those key people in our lives. Remember that as children of God, adopted by Him through the blood of Jesus, we are all a part of His family.
On this Mother’s Day, be reminded that God provides us with many mothers within His family that we should love and acknowledge. And on this Mother’s Day—as women—we should seek to reach out to those in need of love as God leads us to do so.
Be encouraged this Mother’s Day and as we witness the beauty in nature taking place this spring, know that in the same way that God clothes the lilies of the field as they grow (Matthew 6:28-30) and feeds the birds of the air (Matthew 6:26), He will also provide for His children and all of their needs, even our need for love, on this Mother’s Day.
Adrienne L. Hearn, M.S., MFT, is a therapist associate at Summit Counseling.