Sunday, May 12, 2013

Love Covers

As far back as I can remember my mom lived these words.  And I’m not suggesting that she entertained evil or tolerated insolence or rebellion in her children or life, but she seemed to have a discerning eye for knowing the difference between dirt in the heart versus dirt on the surface of the lives of her children and others.  Make sense?

I’ve been told, when I was just an infant, mom was carrying me in her arms.  We lived in an old salt box shaped house on the south side of Des Moines, and the stairs to the second floor were very steep.  Apparently she was at the top of the stairs with me in her arms and she lost her footing on that top stair and slipped.  As the story goes she fell backwards and clutched me to her breast so as not to drop me and to protect me as she slid down the entire steep flight of stairs.

Now it doesn’t sound too extreme, but I guess she broke her tail bone and from that point on had chronic pain and trouble in that area because of the fracture.  I only found out about that incident when I was in college.  But I always knew she had pain while sitting in certain chairs, but never knew why.  Love Covers?

Too many times to count, it would be the last piece of food on a plate or in a bowl and she always gave it up for one of us in the family.  Or for that matter when cookies were baked, she always seemed to eat the burnt ones (carbon deficiency I guess?), and left the good ones for us.  Love Covers?

There were times when I was in grade school and struggling with certain school issues.  Be it my reading, other children making fun of me, conflict with teaches or too many visits to the principal’s office; a stomach ache tended to keep me home.  Poor parenting some would say (maybe psycho sematic?), but I knew early on, she just couldn’t bring herself to force me into painful childhood struggles.  Love Covers?

Some might say that she coddled me.  Maybe she did, but to this day, I know how to stand and fight with the best of them, and I’m not a quitter – but I do know how to be merciful and compassionate, and I do get the whole concept of empathy and I practice it well.  Love Covers?

Or how about the times I would come home late while in high school, and she would get up and sit and talk with me while I ate a bowl of cereal.  I knew those moments were safe.  I would tell her that we sneaked into the Forum IV theaters to watch a movie, or that us guys had tried smoking cigarettes or pot.  Or that beer had somehow factored into where I had been that night, but that I felt bad about it.  She would tell me not to tell my dad, but to keep it between us and God – and don’t do it again or worse may befall me.  I’d go to bed feeling deeply convicted for my external dirt, asking the Lord to forgive me, but knowing He and my mom knew my heart wasn’t dirty – just my outsides for moment in time.  Love Covers?

Or how about the times that I would cry about a broken heart?  And she would hold me and tell me I was special and that she loved me and would never trade me for anything.  It brings me to tears right now, thinking back on those moments.  She still tells me almost weekly, when we talk on the phone, that she loves me and that life will be okay, because the Lord knows what I need and He will provide.  Love Covers?

I can’t tell you that my mom was the world’s greatest mom, but I can tell you that she was and is the greatest mom I’ve ever had and she always makes me laugh and I make her laugh.  Love Covers?

To my mom Betty Kinney-Potterton; thank you and Happy Mother’s Day!  Your love has taught me of God’s love.  And that is the best parenting in my book.  You’ve taught me grace and mercy.  You’ve taught me gentle strength and tenacity, when those qualities were leaking out of me.  I love you mom!

Love Covers?  Yes it does… at least when it comes to my mom. 

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