“Yet amid all these
things we are more than conquerors
through Him who has loved us. For I am convinced that
neither death nor life, neither the lower ranks of evil angels
nor the higher, neither things present nor things future,
nor the forces of nature, nor height nor depth,
nor any other created thing, will be able to
separate us from the love of God which
rests upon us in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:37-39 (WNT)
My mother lay on her hospital bed in the dark as I put lotion on her feet. There wasn’t much else I could do for her. Thankfully, the morphine dulled the pain in her cancer-ridden body. She was dying.
“That feels good,” she told me.
“I’m glad,” I replied. I wanted our last moments together to be good ones. A wall erected when I was a child still stood between us—tall and wide and thick—though neither of us acknowledged it.
Ten minutes passed before my mother spoke again.
“Forgive me,” she said quietly.
“Whatever could I have to forgive you for…” I began. But I knew.
“For not stopping them. For letting them hurt you.” she said..
When I’d tried to talk to her in the past, she shushed me and said things like: “I can’t take you to the hospital. The police will put him in jail.” “Your father will have a heart attack.” “He’ll kill your brother.” “You’re disturbed.” “That’s just craziness.”
Not only had she not intervened, my mother had instigated the abuse by putting me in the line of fire: complaining to my father that I didn’t practice scales on the piano, by insisting I clean my brother’s room…
The old scenes flashed back, but they no longer hurt. As I became an adult, I’d begun to see my mother’s fearfulness, to understand her.
“I forgive you,” I said, but stopped myself from saying more. The time for all that had long since passed.
“I…I…I didn’t love you enough,” she whispered.
My mother was telling the truth.
Her fear had kept her from loving me enough to protect me, but she had loved me enough to make sure I went to church, and that’s where I met someone whose love is perfect and casts out all fear, whose love is more than enough not only for me, for all of us. A Grateful Believer