Counting With Mom

Learning lessons of counting and time…

Mom’s bath is over and she sits on the love seat next to me, her damp head leaning up against my arm. I hold her hand and gently feel the arthritic bumps of her knuckles under her baby soft skin. I quote Bible passages and sing a few songs, and she seems deeply peaceful—like a young child about to fall asleep.

Dad and my brother come home with groceries and lunch, and Mom eats her salad and then a piece of pie. Then Dad and I move into the office to go through the mail. Soon we hear Mom shouting, “Don’t do that to me! Don’t do that to anybody!”
Dad asks, in his teasing way, “What did you do to her?”
“I left her alone,” I admit.

Mom finds us in the office and sits with us as I finish the mail. As we leave the room Mom walks into the kitchen and begins loudly counting, “One, two, three, four, five….” I stand nearby, curious to know how far she can count. She makes it to twenty perfectly and then abruptly stops.

She comes back into the living room and sits in her rocking chair. I help her put her feet up and cover her with a blanket. Dad didn’t get much sleep last night and is hoping they will both doze off as they listen to a book on tape.

And I think now about how many baths Mama helped me with in this same house. And about how many stories she read and songs she sang to me sitting under this same roof. She’s the one who taught me to count to twenty within these same walls. And she’s the one who held my hand and comforted me and let me crawl up into the safety of her bed after scary dreams.

I think of the countless memories I have, with my precious mama, in this very house. And my heart is full of love and I want to hug her close and surround her with every sweet joy and comfort. I want her to always be safe and to never feel alone.

And I think of our days left together on this earth. And I know they are numbered. So, I pray God will give me strength and guidance to honor my parents and meet their needs, as the time ticks away.

But oh what overwhelming peace there is in knowing, that those who love Jesus will have an eternity together with Him. Our joy will be beyond measure! And time will never need counting again.

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