The Spring of Hope
Tomorrow is my Mother-in-Love’s birthday. Lula Mae Willis always joked about being born on Ground Hog’s Day. My husband was also due on that date, but stubbornly waited until February 8th to arrive. This way, his mom got a day all to herself.
Mom Willis was one of my role models. I’ll never attain to her skills as a homemaker and penny pincher. But she gave me her heart for helping tween and teen girls. She attentively listened to them—not just hearing them, but enjoying their company, and always had two or three “adopted” well after her own girls had left home. She sang hymns with gusto and listened intently to sermons. She was uncomfortable in the water, especially before moving to a home that had its own pool, and it was a real act of faith when she was baptized by immersion. She always said as long as her feet could touch the bottom and her hair didn’t get wet, she could deal with being in the water-obviously baptism broke those two rules! She had a giving heart and loved seeing and meeting needs, often sensing someone was hurting when no one else noticed.
In 1994, Mom Willis found out she had breast cancer. Three years later the cancer had spread and she knew deep down this was her last year to live. Eventually there was nothing more medical science could provide her in the way of hope, but she was not hopeless. Her hope remained in Jesus Christ until her last breath.
My mother-in-love had a tremendous faith. Her relationship with God was evident as she endured the effects of the cancer, the chemo, and the radiation. She knew she wasn’t suffering alone—God was with her every step of the way. Even on days when she couldn’t read her Bible, she had someone else read it to her.
I learned a lot from Mom Willis about trusting God no matter what. When she whispered goodbye to this life it wasn’t because she lost her fight with cancer, it’s because God called her to her real home—with Him. There is no defeat in death—merely graduation!
Tomorrow, whether or not the groundhog sees his shadow, determine to bring spring early this year. Not spring weather, but the Spring of Hope—that same hope Jesus placed in the heart of my Mother-in-Love.
PRAYER: Father of Hope, when the trials of life knock me off my feet and I’m baptized with the deluge of peace, help me trust in You. And when I’m heartsick with the sorrows of this life, I determine to praise You anyway. Then, Oh Lord, I know You’ll bring a new spring of hope.
“Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God. Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God,” Psalm 43: 4-5 KJV.
Today’s devotion is by Kathy Carlton Willis, wife to Russ, pastor’s wife to many, author, editor, publicist, and speaker. Kathy Carlton Willis Communications encompasses her many passions. Learn more about how she desires to “Shine the Light on Him and His” at: http://kcwcomm.blogspot.com/ or http://www.kathycarltonwillis.com/.