BEAUTIFUL STRANGER

Where did you come from, beautiful stranger?

New to this land we call home.

We were not expecting you though I had been praying for someone like you to come along.

Autumn told me the story of how you both met. 

Her voice sounded different. My heart had to check. Could you be the one that God set apart? 

To walk out life, loving our daughter with all your heart?

I wrestled, I doubted. Others questioned and frowned. But how we grew to love you the more, you came around.

What sparked my heart is your love for Jesus. You seemed genuine and sincere. 

So I went before our father God with long moments of deep prayer. 

Asking if I should beware of the beautiful stranger? That had seemed to blow in from who knows where?

And then you did it.

 You asked for her hand in marriage early, to our surprise.

Slow down, beautiful stranger. I had to question why?

And this was your reply.

She is beautiful, yes, but the thing I’m drawn to best is when I hear her pray. It’s like she talks to God in a different way. She really knows he’s listening, almost childlike. And somehow, I feel Him in our midst.

She’s smart, and I know she is the one God has for me. To walk the rest of this journey, my friend, my partner, my wife.

It amazes me at times when you least expect it. God shows up, and everything changes.

And here we are, the both of you, now husband and wife. 

One of my favorite quotes from Sacred marriage is

” What if God designed marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?

I know God will use both of you to help shape and mold you to be more like Jesus.

I pray you are strengthened daily by the power of the Holy One.

Lead your bride as God intended.

Love her as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.

Be patient with her as God has been with you.

Wash her with the water of The Word. 

I want you to know that you are loved. 

You are no longer a beautiful stranger but a son

Sent from God above.

We love you, Travis.

Jamie (Mom)

October 12, 2022

JUST ONE MORE DAY

I get a phone call almost every morning from my daughter Summer as she makes her ten-minute commute to work, including her stop for coffee. I hear the gal taking her order. It’s become our ritual. I know what she will get and say it in my mind, wishing to have that drink face to face.

 Summer was filled with emotions this morning. She asked me. Mom do you ever miss the years when we were younger? And to my surprise, I burst into tears and could hardly answer her.

Yes, my voice quivered, my face wet with tears. I miss those years.

I reminisced as the flood of memories spilled over, as though they were waiting for me to stop and take notice.

How I miss my babies. The little girl I couldn’t wait to name Summer. She filled my life with goodness while stretching me in every direction to be the best mother for her. I miss my little boy Jacob who would pick flowers and hand them to me with bent peddles, filling my heart with love. And tiny Autumn so full of life. Lifting her small feet off the ground as her little tike car barreled down the slope, almost giving me a heart attack. Mom, don’t worry, I’m not gonna crash. She would say that every single time my expression told her to slow down.

 I miss my sweet Hannah touching my face in the early morning and kissing my cheek softly. 

Seriously, how did it go by so quickly? I was warned but always forgot when I’d see the laundry piled on the floor, dreading the all-day task.

I want to encourage my daughter. My daughter-in-law. And mothers who are in this season of life. 

Don’t give up!

I know the endless tasks of dirty dishes and laundry. Diapers that need changing, school drop-offs, and pick-ups. Check homework before it gets missed, and you get the red checkmark reminding you to remember. Potty training and storytelling. Kissing skinned knees and, at times, having a full-time job stretching you so thin you almost don’t recognize yourself. 

Don’t give up!

Don’t ever stop trying to be the best mom God created you to be. Let Him fill you. 

It’s challenging, and on most days, there will be no “Me-time.” 

The view from this season of my life feels like 10,000 feet above, and my mind remembers well all the places I needed grace and the times I lost my footing falling flat on my face.

I can see all reasons you might want to quit. All the moments you feel like a nervous breakdown is just a breath away. You can’t wash one more dish or put out one more fire. I get it. I see you. I’m praying for you.

 The tug of this world tells you to think about yourself and your unmet needs. Grab it. Take it, they say.

The pull is gradual, and the focus can sometimes blur, causing you to forget why you are their mother. 

You are the keeper of your cottage. You are the lover of your husband your friend. You are the voice of reason to all who will lend an ear. Sometimes you’re even the nurse that pulls a twelve-hour shift, and no one seems to care.

I’m nearing that place people refer to as empty nesters. I’ve learned to sleep until my body is ready to get out of bed. It’s been nice getting older with less of the have-to and more of the get-to.

I’m in the middle of planning our second daughter’s wedding and wishing for one more day.

Can we go down the hill one more day as your face lights up with laughter? 

Can you pick me one more flower because I didn’t have time to press the others in a book? My sweet baby can you touch my face one more time with your soft voice whispering mommy, I love you. Can we have one more day? Can we?

My prayer for all the young moms out there. You are precious, loved, and priceless. Don’t put your focus in the wrong direction. Don’t allow your view to get so clouded you forget. The teenage years can get wild, and the young adults really don’t know everything, and at times they still might need you, one more day.

So take it slow, reel it in. Don’t be in such a rush for the day to end. Stay off your phone when their eyes are there, hoping you’d want to play or make cookies along the way. 

Wake up before dawn, put the coffee on. Open God’s word and fill up on His truth, teaching your babies how much God’s love is true.

Because I can promise you this. 

You will wish for one more day. You will hurt when they live far away. You will be less busy, and the memories will be what you have.

Remember, they are facing life in a forward motion, and you are now mostly watching. 

Time is a thief, and we must stand guard. 

Don’t let your heart grow weary. The Bible promises in due season, we will reap if we do not faint. (Galatians 6:9)

Praying that your season of motherhood will be the best time of your life. 

Praying for you.

Jamie

@October 2022