When I was a little boy, sometimes, I did stupid things. Little boys do. From time to time, I was disobedient, disrespectful and destructive. Little boys are. Yet, as I get older, more and more specific memories — of the good things I did and the bad ones, too — fade into the background of my mind. Instead, what’s fought to the forefront and found it’s way to the center stage, isn’t how my mom cheered for me (though there wasn’t a better cheerleader in the world). It’s what she said when she disciplined me. When she was angry with me, her face would flush, and get red. Her eyes would squint a little. Her brow would furrow. Her nostrils would flare. Her hands would shake as she cupped them, just under my jaw bone, and lifted my chin up so my ashamed eyes could meet her furious ones.

I will always be here for you

Then, she’d say, “I’m so mad at you right now it’s hard to even look at you. But you are my son. And I love you. With all that I am. With every last fiber of my being. And no matter what you do — no matter what — I will always be here for you. If you went to jail for the rest of your life and the world forgot about you, I’d visit you every week. I will never abandon you. I will always be there for you. Because you are my son. And that’s the only reason I need.” 
Although I felt the full impact of what she said and did in those moments, as a child, I could only internalize them. I couldn’t verbalize them. As an adult, I can, so I will. Right here, and right now. Because my mom doesn’t have an online audience to talk to or a physical platform to stand on. She’s not on Instagram and doesn’t travel the country speaking from stages. But everything I have is as much hers as it is mine, because she was the earliest and is longest-standing investor… in me.

So, today, while the Internet tells moms they need to build a perfect Insta-family and work on their waistline, let’s remind them that the body of work they’re building within the four walls of their home matters so much more. Someone said recently that our perception of our Heavenly Father is formed by the actions of our earthly one, and that’s true, but I learned about His fierce, loyal, unwavering and unconditional love for me… from her.

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