This is the only picture I could find of just the two of us as adults...so glad to have it...
I couldn't have known on this very special day that it would be the last big event in my life that my mom would be present. She passed away just four years later on October 25, 1997. It has been thirteen years. My sisters each have two children, plus my three, so mom would have had seven grandchildren today...something she wanted very badly!
Martha Valeria Owens Bartles
She was a beautiful woman with a gentle and quiet spirit...elegant and yet adventurous! Last night, I enjoyed showing the children old photos of mom rafting down the Colorado river, skiing large mountains and playing on the lake. She was the picture of 'health' when she got sick and the doctors gave her only six months to live.
We did not grow up attending church regularly, and I knew very little about the Lord. The Lord found each of us...my sisters and me at different times in our lives. When my mother was sick, she asked us how we each knew the Lord. It was such a blessing to share how God had worked on each of us and plucked us from the lives we were living and from the choices we were making!
On the day that she passed away and after many months of suffering, my oldest sister whispered in mom's ear, "Reach up to Jesus when you are ready. He is reaching down from heaven ready to take you home." Reaching up was the last thing she did. She was only 54 years old.
I find such comfort in my sweet memories. The Lord provides comfort to me from the loving arms of my husband, my sisters, and my dear friends...and my children. They each possess some beautiful qualities of my mom. Never again will I feel the loving embrace that only a mom can give, but when I hold my children, I feel it in a strange way...a hug that says, "everything is going to be okay."
Hospice has been very dear to our hearts and we were blessed to see a Hospice facility built in our own town with a room dedicated in my mom's name! We had some beautiful flowers from our shower this weekend, so we decided to take those to someone at Hospice. I took my oldest daughter and my niece and we delivered these lovely flowers with a prayer, "Lord, bless the person who receives these flowers and that as she finds death near, she would reach up, as Jesus is reaching down...Amen."
Logan Jackson (12 years old) and my daughter Ashlyn (eight years old). When I was pregnant with Ashlyn, the 'due date' that was given to me was...October 25.
I am a bit late posting this 'life lesson,' but it comes from the book of Job,
"The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the
name of the LORD." ~Job 1:21
While life has offered much tragedy and the 'Lord has taken,' He has also given much, and I am praising His name always!
Hug your mom today and when you do, absorb that sweet, gentle loving embrace that only a Mama can give!
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