A Mother’s Heart

Being a mom is a special gift. Being a mom is challenging. Being a mom of a child who has been your prodigal most of their adult life is tough!

When most of us knew that we were expecting a child we were excited. We could not make time tick off fast enough so we could hold that new life in our arms. Those months seemed like an eternity. Then the great day arrived and the journey began.

I know when I look back on the years when my boys were growing up it fills me with such sweet memories. I really did enjoy those young years before one was in 2nd grade and the other in kindergarten. They were the cutest little boys.

Of course, before I knew it those preteen years came and so did the changes. The oldest was a timid, tenderhearted son and the youngest was an adventurous, strong-willed son. They were two years and four months apart in age and different as dark and light! I believe from the time the youngest was 10 and the oldest was 12 they fought 75% of the time. You know the stuff! “He looked at me!” “Momma, he touched me!” “Momma, he won’t leave me alone!” It seemed to never end. I was the mom that could not wait for summer to end so I could have a break!

Before I knew it one was in college and the other was preparing to leave for Army basic training. I was so proud to see my oldest start his freshman year although I wondered if that timid eighteen year old would ever make it in the big fish bowl of a university campus. This mom was truly nervous. He was not my cute little boy anymore but a young man taking the first steps towards his goal of an art degree.

Then there was my youngest. The crazy kid who always asked a thousand questions in a twenty minute drive to church. The little boy who wanted to be a backhoe driver when he grew up. Then the next week he was going to be a fireman. Even to this day I believe he is searching for what he really wants to do.

A mother’s heart beats strong with love for her children. We watch them grow, we watch them reach their goals. Sometimes watch them fail, or make a costly mistake but through it all we are there. We give encouragement, comfort, correction but most of all we give them love.

However, there are times when we are tested as mothers. Especially when they are grown and you cannot instruct, you can’t send them to their rooms, or tell them they are grounded. Nope, they are on their own and their mistakes are all theirs! You wouldn’t mind so much if they came and sat down beside you and cried on your shoulder but they rarely do. So you pray. You pray a lot! They don’t see you pray but you do it. I pray constantly for mine.

Then sometimes you have a situation with an adult child that is more than challenging. He is the child that has driven you to your knees in desperation more often than ever expected. I have been in such a crucible with my youngest for fifteen years. So many times I am weary and overwhelmed with grief at the long stretches of no communication. As a mom I hunger for that “little” boy to call home and say how much he loves me and his dad. I long for him to make right the wrongs. I hope and pray daily that God will send an angel in flesh to minister to him and remind him that choosing God’s path is better than his.

Do you find yourself in such a situation? Do you lament the loss of a relationship with a prodigal son? Do you look in the distance as the prodigal’s father did to see him running home? My husband told me several years ago something that I will never forget. He said “The father never went after the prodigal, the prodigal came running home on his own.”

I understand your mother’s heart. We have big hearts and they feel BIG pain when it involves our children. I know that only God can bring these children around. As moms if we could fix it, we would. But our hopes must be anchored in the prayers we say and the God that hears them. Don’t quit, keep praying. God hears your cry!

Luke 15:20-24, “So he returned home to his father (or mother). And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. His son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his for his finger and sandals for his feet. And kill the calf we have been fattening. We must celebrate with a feast, for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began.

Living by the brook,


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