Happy Birthday to one amazing lady who was born 89 years ago today, Margaret Elizabeth.Born in Laurel, Mississippi, with a twin brother Charles – she is better known today as Libby. She is mom to three sons, one daughter – grandmother to 17 teens to adults, great grandmom to seven, and “momma” (as my dad calls her) to hundreds around the country and world! She is just one great “mom.” Sixty-four plus years ago she said, “yes” to a Pennsylvania GI who had come to her town of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She moved to Orlando to be nearer to where he was stationed, then without either sets of parents nearby, this lady married the man she loved one hot July day. Both my mom and dad said “yes” to God first, then “yes” to each other second! They still have that same commitment today. She has never wavered – in fact, she would tell you that she loves God and my dad more today than ever before. What makes this lady so special?
When she said “yes” to God and “yes” to my dad, that began her on a journey that has taken her from southern Louisiana, to Florida, to Texas, to Long Island, New York, and all over the world. She has served selflessly as a wife, mom, and minister’s wife all of these years. She has willingly moved from place to place and set up housekeeping wherever God took her; she has listened to thousands of sermons, taken notes, and laughed at jokes she had already heard! She has stood by the side of every one of her children, believing in them, praying for them, and giving to them and to their families. She has traveled the world with my dad the last 30 years as they have conducted prayer conferences for churches in almost every state and many foreign countries. She has logged hundreds of miles walking (and still does), with the man she loves. She has been there with him through multiple and ongoing physical struggles, as they have grown older together. She has laughed at her “elderly things” and never given up on getting things done that needed to get done. She emails on her computer and surfs the web. She carries her cell phone, although some times she forgets to turn it on! She hugs anyone whom she feels might need a hug, as she is out and about, meeting no strangers. She helps and prays for her neighbors, takes food to those much younger than herself, making sure no one goes hungry. She loves…loves like no one I know. She loves her children, grandchildren, and greatgrandchildren, and excitedly looks forward to many more of the latter! She has a Christmas stocking with a name for everyone of the family members and puts them up around her living room every year, celebrating the many lives in her family. She calls the lonely, listens to the needs of others, weeps with those who weep, and rejoices with those who rejoice. She has faced many storms courageously and plans to keep on doing so. She still cooks, drives, and helps my dad mow the yard. If you call her in the morning, you will catch her with her morning coffee, orange juice, and her Bible and prayer list. She may be praying for you. She is teachable and open to learning new skills, keeping the instructions close by in case she cannot remember them.
I am so proud of my mom and the picture of relentless motherhood she is; she is a powerful example of a faithful, loving wife, to her daughter, daughters-in-laws, grand-daughters, great-grand-daughter, and those yet to come. She is quiet strength – resolved commitment – love in action – an amazing mom.
Prov. 31 describes my mom well! She is a “wife of noble character…worth more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her…she brings him good, not harm all the days of her life!…she works with eager hands…she brings food from afar…gets up while it is still dark…provides food for her family (and others)…considers…and buys…sets about her work vigorously…her arms are (still) strong for her tasks…she opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy (you cannot stop her even now)…her husband is respected at the city gate (many of them)…she is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed (yes, we do!); her husband also, and he praises her (boy, does he?); Many women do noble things (in this culture), but you surpass them all. Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Today I give her the reward she has earned, and I am one of her works praising her at the city gate!
Mom, may all of us who know you, follow your example, in love, faithfulness, and good deeds. You are amazing! Happy Birthday!!