Obviously I am not a mother, so I do not speak from experience. But I have two women (mothers) in my life who help me to know what every other mother wants.
Now, some of the men reading this might say, "It's already Mother's Day, and it's too late for that one special gift." While it's true there might not be time to get a special gift or meal or box set of Jane Austen DVDs, there's always time for that gift she really wants.
Oh, the sentimental would say moms just want to be loved. Well, yes - doesn't everyone? But mothers sacrifice so much and rarely ask for anything in return.
Those who think moms need time off on Mother's Day would be right. A well-deserved break is always welcome, between diapers and helping kids get diplomas. But is that what they really want?
Think a little deeper. What does your Mom, Mama or Mother really want that only you can give?
I know an elderly woman here in Augusta with 11 grown children living in this area. In these later years of her life, she is preoccupied with one job - working, scraping, praying, and loving those children and grandchildren. Why? She's not done trying to get the one Mother's Day present all moms really want.
I mentioned earlier two women who have helped me with this answer: My mother and my wife, who is mother to our two children. Today most of us will wake up, wrap a present, make a phone call (if Mom lives out of town), take Mom to a special service at church, take her out to lunch (no one should expect Mom to cook on Mother's Day) and maybe even give her flowers. Moms will smile and nod and say that's nice, but deep down they're looking for something else.
Have I kept you wondering long enough?
The universal gift that every mom wants might not come to mothers on Mother's Day. It's not a gift any of us can give; it's a life we must live!
What is the one present all mother's want but some never receive? It's the lives of her children lived in a way that honors her efforts. It's a life lived in fear of God and in respect to all the sacrifice and love they have shown. It's the beautiful words from others saying "your son/daughter is a Godly, loving and respectful person. I would be proud to have children and adult children that have turned out like yours."
Some moms do receive that ultimate gift of seeing infants turn into children who make it through their teens and then become mature adults who reflect the same qualities instilled in them by their mothers.
I know of one mom who has seen this come true in her young adult daughter who struggled with an illness that confined her to bed and the financial strain of hospital bills, all the while being a new wife.
This young lady endured it all with a smile and a joy that only comes from above and from parents who set such an example. While observing all this I can say, "I would be proud to have a child grow up and show such grace and strength."
When that truth is spoken about a mother's children, there is no greater gift. No mother sets out to raise her children to be a drain on society as criminals, slackers or drunkards and, despite the best efforts of mom, some adult children choose to dishonor their mother that way.
But if you want to give mom the best gift she has ever had, live your life honoring God, family, country and your fellow man - live a life worthy of her love.
The next time Mother's Day rolls around and someone asks your mother, "Is he your son?" or "Is she your daughter?" your Mom can reply with a smile on her face and the sparkle of a tear in her eye and say "Yes!" And that is what every mother wants for Mother's Day.
P.S. Mom, I hope I have given you the gift you really want.
(Mike Klaus is the senior minister at Columbia County Christian Church.)
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