Perhaps you are like me and wish you could turn back the hands of time. I love how God brings back those family snapshots of thoughts at just the right time. My daughter is a mom once again. She is an awesome mom, I wasn’t worried. Like most moms she would do anything for her children for the sake of loving them well.

It’s hard to see that you’re nurturing and speaking life into young hearts at 2 a.m. We do it because we love them so much. We moms  just do. It doesn’t surprise me, that inner strength we get when we have to wipe one more bottom or clean up sticky lollipop goop out of daddy’s nice dress shirt pocket. It doesn’t surprise me when life finds us on our bottoms mopping the floor for the fourth time today.

It doesn’t surprise me that when you put a little 3-year-old in the corner on his time out stool, and he responds with a “Mom, can we pray about this?” (Okay, that one surprised me a little) As a mom, we didn’t sign up for a life of cleaning up after you and your dog. We certainly didn’t think that each and every time we went to the restroom we would find the toilet paper holder empty…again.

There were many re-starts in our married lives too. We gather our courage, our teddy bears and spend a wedding anniversary cleaning a rent house across from strangers. We celebrate our love by cleaning spider webs out of the kitchen corners making new memories for sake of it.

One year, as a young mom myself, I was driving down main memory lane. I was feeling a little homesick for my mom that day, even with my two little kiddos in the car. I looked in my rear view mirror and thanked God I wasn’t alone in that strange and unfamiliar place. Long love months of yearning brought a lot of restoration, that’s what love does. What surprises me was how love got me and our family through life’s loveless days. Loving each other as a family brought us through many of changes that year.

My son learned how to walk and eat cat food. I learned mothering because my kids needed one (all the while missing mine). We all learned how to garden, moo at cows, love in play and how to swing outside. My daughter learned how to color happiness for us.

My husband learned to live without his dad. I learned how to discipline and disciple love. Sheer panic taught me peace in a playful round of hide and seek, only to find my son content inside the pot and pans cabinet. Urgent Care clinic doesn’t take holidays. A cut doesn’t always require stitches when an iron accidentally falls. Don’t be surprised that when a child spills out of a crib, he bounces.

What surprises me, when I recall all these memories of adversity, even though they we some of the most difficult, we learned to love and how to be a loving family. Mothering is hard to see in those lack luster, mundane Mondays.

God always speaks to my heart a little love messages like this…”They’re only yours for a little while, ” His message would only mother them a short time until He brought them their own families to love.

It was in those difficult days, in teaching love, and I learned family love, a deep endearing love. Love is like that, it binds us together … still. After many years of more loving through change, crisis, cancer, and more love-cares than I can shake a stick at, I consider how our lives are only ours to have in our hands for a little while, until it’s time to sing love songs to our Savior.

If only for a little while, can we so love each other in today like it’s our last? If I had the chance to love differently, well, I would do it all again, and let love win bigger and linger more in it. Our lives are too short to walk away from moments that make you smile more, sing louder and learn to love well.

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