Thursday, August 24, 2006

Marriage and Mortality

My mother moved in with us recently. It has been somewhat difficult as I predicted. She is a heavy smoker and has forgotten a couple of times to take it outside. She is very opinionated politically and really feisty. She is in the early stages of dementia. It has been difficult for all of us to adjust. She is used to drinking every day and pacing around the house with a cigarette. She can't drink like that in our home and must smoke outside. Both my husband and I have complained to each other about her habits, and then repented. Complained. Repented.....more than a few times. She also is very anti-God. She told my sister she wanted to move out because we talk about God and read our Bibles and are just too "religious".

My mother fell down the other day and broke her hip. She was outside before dawn to retrieve her beloved paper (new fodder to debate me politically). she managed to crawl into the house and call out to my husband who carried her to bed. We took her to the Veteran's Hospital and she had surgery to put some screws and a plate in her hip.

When I saw my mother last night, I saw mortality. Gone is the feistiness. Bruce even brought up President takes. She was whispering with nary a cuss word. She had been throwing up since the surgery and they fear it is old blood which indicates some other problems. She could only smile at us through her pain. I have never seen her so helpless.

I have prayed for my mother since I was 21 when I became a Christian. I have always seen her life as such a sad life with little love. She buried herself in books and went through a couple of painful divorces to men who treated her very poorly. She has such animosity and bitterness towards God. Other people see her as quite eccentric and can take her in small doses only. I was one of those people and it took my marriage to Bruce and much prayer to give me the strength to let her move in with us.

Last night on the way home from a visit to the hospital, we prayed for her again. I broke down. I just want to see her saved. I want her to experience the love of God. I want her to experience hope.

My husband amazes me. My last husband, being a very legalistic Christian, did not have much room in his heart or in his life for my alcoholic, smoking, cussing family. My present husband has so much kindness and compassion it amazes me. He told me the other day how much he misses Mother's presence in our home. No matter how annoying she can be, he really misses her and wants her home. My husband tells her he loves her. My husband made her breakfast every morning even though she hovered over him and told him how to make it correctly. Bruce felt so bad the morning she fell down because he usually goes out and gets the paper and that morning he was busy doing something else. He has taken on the duty in her absence of feeding the scrub jays who come every morning to snatch the peanuts my mother tosses out, and he feeds her neurotic cat who only lets Mother touch him and is in mortal fear of anyone else.

I transition into my marriage from the thought of mortality because the bottom line of my thoughts is about the sovereignty of God. God knows my heart towards my mother. I have to trust in Him concerning her salvation. I transition to my marriage because I think of the sovereignty of God to give me such a wonderful husband who so patiently bears with my mother in her last years. My husband and I struggled with the very thought of whether we should even get married. We both read a lot of material pro and con for remarriage. One article we struggled greatly with was an article by John Piper. We both admire John Piper very much, and his article was a convincing article against remarriage. We finally came to a place after counsel with our pastor that it was ok to get married. Both of our past spouses had long since remarried so there was no chance of reconciliation. I can so see the sovereignty of God in our marriage now. I have received much healing in my life and so has my husband in our love and care for one another and in our relationship with God.
I thank God so much for the husband I have now in my life, so full of love towards my family, and so desirious to please God in his life.

Please lift my mother up in your prayers. She is lost and hard hearted. Please pray for us to be obedient to God in how to take care of her. Thanks.


At 6:09 PM, Blogger missmellifluous said...

Oh Candy! I am so glad God has given you such a wonderful husband!

Having already read the post above I am praying for you with tears in my eyes.

At 9:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, I pray for you and your mother. I also invite you to consider the wideness of God's mercy. The mighty act of atonement, reconciliation and restoration was accomplished at the cross once and for all. The mystery and tenderness of that grace is too far-reaching for my mind to comprehend. I do not think we can know what is in the heart of another. I know that God does, and that he seeks each one of us as if we were his only child. Our understanding of what steps, rules, and orthodoxies encompass salvation may well, I believe, diminish the grandeur of God that does indeed flame out, like shining from shook foil. Jesus, and the act of grace that occurred at the cross, surround my life and will continue to hold me as I pass through death. I pray that your mother may come to know this.

At 7:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm the same anon. of the previous post. I am so sorry that I wrote it without realizing that your mother had already died. I hope it did not cause you further pain as you grieve for your mother. I sincerely agree with what you said, that when the door to life beyond this life opened, your mother recognized that it was the homecoming she had been seeking. That is the way I look at death. We are created to enjoy the love and beauty of life, but also have within us the yearning for the time when God will wipe away all tears, and crying and pain will be no more (Revelation 21:4). Peace be with you and your family.

At 8:41 PM, Blogger candyinsierras said...

Thanks for such kind comments. I have been encouraged and comforted by the Lord greatly in the days since my mother's death. I have hope that she experienced a deathbed conversion. It has been something I have struggled with at times and can only hope for the mercy and grace of God. Thank you for commenting.


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