He will cover you with his feathers.
He will shelter you with his wings.
His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
(Psalm 91:4 NLT)
Happy Mother’s Day
One of the great joys of our daily lives here is the kangaroos. Over the past eighteen months we have grown to know and understand their rhythms. We recognise individuals, Ellie has given them names, and we laugh at their idiosyncrasies.
Young kangaroos or joeys leave their mother’s pouch ten months after birth, and hang around mum for the next ten months or so, still drinking milk from time to time. The photo captures the beautiful play of a joey messing with mum as she eats. We regularly marvel at the patience of mother ‘roos, especially as her joey grows bigger and bigger, even getting to the stage that mum’s pouch touches the ground when she is eating. And it certainly does not look comfortable when she hops away!
This Mother’s Day, we are thankful for the daily amusement and wonder as we watch the kangaroos, and they draw us to reflect on what it means to be a mother. We all have a mother who brings us into the world and endeavours to raise us to the best of her ability and capacity. And like the joey follows mum around, we learn from our mothers as we grow.
Thanks be to Mothers!
We are fans of the US writer Wendell Berry, and this Mother’s Day we’d love to share with you this poem that he wrote for his own mother. It reflects his experience with his mother; and although he apparently was a bit of a handful, his mother continued to love him, expressed in her forgiveness. The marvellous turn that Berry introduces in the final lines of the poem is to make the connection between his experience of his mum’s forgiveness to the promise of forgiveness that lasts and that binds people in love. And that forgiveness announces the new creation – the promise of green in a parched world, of light pushing aside the darkness, the untangling of the messiness of this world and our lives, and the end of sadness and dismay.
To My Mother
I was your rebellious son,
do you remember? Sometimes
I wonder if you do remember,
so complete has your forgiveness been.
So complete has your forgiveness been
I wonder sometimes if it did not
precede my wrong, and I erred,
safe found, within your love,
prepared ahead of me, the way home,
or my bed at night, so that almost
I should forgive you, who perhaps
foresaw the worst that I might do,
and forgave before I could act,
causing me to smile now, looking back,
to see how paltry was my worst,
compared to your forgiveness of it
already given. And this, then,
is the vision of that Heaven of which
we have heard, where those who love
each other have forgiven each other,
where, for that, the leaves are green,
the light a music in the air,
and all is unentangled,
and all is undismayed.
We certainly have needed our own mothers’ forgiveness, and we are grateful for it. We may not all be mothers, we may not all have the best relationship with our mothers, or we may be missing our mothers terribly this holiday – but in the end God gives us all the power to forgive and nurture others.
We pray that God will bless you this Mothers’ Day and nurture you. And may you know the deep forgiveness of our Lord’s heart.