I know that getting close to one of us on Mother’s Day is about as intimidating as a petting a hungry lioness. You don’t know how we are going to react. We might growl at you, bite you, walk away from you or, probably the worst response to you, cry.
There are a lot of mother’s who are missing a piece of their heart this Mother’s Day. Even when she is someone you love, it is awkward and scary to approach her. You don’t know what to say or what she needs. From this grieving mom, here’s how to help on Mother’s Day.
1. Remember how many children I have.
Every time someone says, “She has 6 kids,” I cringe. I have 7! Saying I have 6 feels almost blasphemous. Denying his existence is cruel torture to my heart. Every time someone says, “She has 7 children,” another part of me heals.
2. Say his name.
I’ve said it before, but I will say it again. The sound of Azaiah’s name tastes sweet in my mouth. His name wraps warmth around my heart like a favorite blanket. He is my son, Azaiah Stone DeGarmo, my strength is Yahweh.
3. Include him.
If you want to buy me a ring with birthstones or a necklace with charms, include all of my children.
4. Let me be sad.
If I want to cry on Mother’s Day, I will! Please don’t wipe my tears, tell me to stop or assure me that everything is going to be alright. Please don’t pat my shoulder and antagonize me with Christian clichés’. I know God’s promises. I have faith. I do believe. But I also know that the wages of sin is death. Death is a penalty. Death is the sentence for crimes against a Holy God. Death hurts bad. It hurt God. It hurts me.
Please don’t push me through my grief. Telling me to get out of house or have some fun is not helpful. Telling me that he wouldn’t want me to act like this is not healing. Telling me it is time to move on is down right callous. Please, let me be sad.
5. Don’t make me.
If I don’t want a fancy dinner, bouquets of flowers and a three-ringed circus, don’t make me. Simple, sentimental gifts of the heart feel so much better. I am acutely aware of life and death. I understand what really matters in the moment. I don’t want a big, superficial hoopla. I just want a moment to savor the children in my arms.
Prayer is better than a phone call. Prayer is better than a card. Prayer is better than a gift, a meal or a tribute. Please don’t minimize your prayers. Please don’t ask, “Is there anything else I can do besides pray?” Please don’t say, “The least I can do is pray.” Prayer is a mighty call to the throne of the Almighty. Prayer is the most you can do.
Believe me, I feel every cord of prayer that suspends me from this suffering. Each uttered prayer lifts me. Each time my name is laid at Jesus’ feet, he touches me. So if you want to help me this Mother’s day, don’t be afraid. Just remember my son. Understand my limitations. And speak my name often to the Comforter.
Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray… The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up… pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. – James the Brother of Jesus