Monday, August 16, 2010

The Comfort of a Mother

"As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you..." (Isaiah 66:13, NIV)

A sweet friend of mine received the serious diagnosis of cancer this year. Faced with the grueling treatments of radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery, her dear mother has traveled from another state to be there by her side. Her presence has not only given much-needed aid at home, but it has also given great moral support and comfort.

Last week I had the opportunity to discuss this sort of unique encouragement with a group of 40 mothers at a day camp as we studied an entry from Jolene Philo's A DIFFERENT DREAM FOR MY CHILD for our Bible study. The entry we read shares how Philo and her husband discover the importance of touch when their newborn son is hospitalized with difficulties. She ends her passage by asking readers to consider what sort of touch expresses their love and soothes their child.

Of course, since touch is often an issue, this struck a cord with each of the mothers who had a child on the autism spectrum. Some shared the value of deep pressure massage, craniosacral therapy or even a scented bath. Those whose children were overcome with anxiety also found this to be a pertinent discussion. In the end, no mother could deny how important their touch was to their son or daughter, no matter what the diagnosis was.

The conversation widened as I shared with the mothers that "touch" may come in different forms. It may be your tender words that calm your child. Time spent together doing an activity your child loves may be a precious way you touch your child. Or it may just be your presence in the room that makes all the difference.

Regardless of how it comes, isn't it amazing that this is on the radar screen of the God of the Universe? He even uses our behavior as mothers as the standard by which He shows His own lovingkindness to us! In fact, it is His very Spirit that acts in and through a faithful mother to impact and shape a child's life.

When you are feeling inadequate, as we mothers so often do, pull away for awhile and reflect on the amazing comfort that only you as a mother give to your child. Whether age 4 or age 40, no one's presence can bring us tenderness quite the way our mothers can. God has given you the exceptional gift of being the one person who can not only offer your child groundedness but also help your child to thrive. When life's challenges arise, God smiles, not because we are perfect as parents, but because we make His presence known to our offspring by merely being present to them. For your child, you are the very embodiment of "the God of all comfort."

PRAY: Lord, thank You for bringing us comfort through our mother's touch and our tender caring for our own children.

~ Barb Dittrich

1 comment:

  1. Barb,

    Thanks for the mention and the link. Most of all, thanks for once again sharing the importance of touch in the lives of our children. It speaks volumes!