Just finished listening to Jodi Eareckson Tada on the radio speaking of interdependence. Her message was about our fears of being a burden to others. Being a quadriplegic, she could, of course, easily fall into the trap of thinking of herself as a burden to others, but she offered a new way to see this: The joy of our interdependence.
For many years, I carried the burden of guilt—being an only child and Dad having passed away, I always felt guilty because I lived in New York City while my Mom lived alone in Montgomery, Alabama. Then Yeshua found me and I understood that only through Him could one receive everlasting life. I left to work as a missionary in Chicago, sharing the Gospel with other Jewish people—but again came the nagging guilt: What about my Mom—who’s going to share with her?
Oh, what a limited perspective I had—you see, God had it covered! My mother’s house was at the end of the street, until one day an enterprising developer decided to cut down the trees at the end of her block and create a cul de sac. Four homes sprouted up, and all four were filled with Christian families. Mom spoke often about one family in particular, and in particular their young daughter. Catherine. I was told by Catherine’s mother that one day she overheard her daughter speaking with my mother. “Miss Nell, how come you don’t believe in Jesus? He was Jewish.” Mom was heard saying, “Well, I guess I do—everyone keeps telling me about Him.”
About five years later, the Lord brought Michael into my life and we moved to Montgomery, Alabama. During the last year of Mom’s life, now under the care of Hospice because of her breast cancer, she came to live with us, and we watched as her Savior drew her to Himself. Her funeral was attended by the precious families who lived in the cul de sac, each told “thank you, you will see Mom in glory.”
Now twenty+ years later, thanks to Facebook, I received a message from Catherine, now a wife and mother, establishing a reconnection.
She wrote: Oh tears of joy are streaming down my face. I loved her so dearly. My memories of her are among some of my most precious memories. I can’t wait to hug her again in Glory. I have missed her lately. Maybe it began with the terrible potato pancakes I ordered at a deli here in Atlanta. They made me long for hers. I order them wherever they are on the menu, and none have ever been as good as hers. She made them for me often during the afternoons I visited her. And I’d sit in her little room next to the kitchen and play on her black key typewriter. She was the one that taught me how to use a typewriter! So many fun memories I’m sure I could fill a book.
So all the time I was feeling guilty, and thinking basically “It’s all about me—and up to me,” our Loving Father was weaving together a resplendent tapestry (oh, my Mom loved doing needlepoint). So sweet and so tender. Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to glimpse your masterpiece.