“A toast, to you, and all your dreams. May this be the best year of your life, Lucille!”
My friends Cyndy, Ken, and Ryan had taken my husband and I skiing for my 43rd birthday. They treated me so nice even though I slowed them down most of the day. We were at Mary Jane, near
Though I’m an intermediate skiier we spent most of the day on the advanced runs. I slowly carved my way across each mogul, while my friends swirled in and out of the bumps.Later on, I cut across the mountain just in time for a snowboarder to fly over my head. Cyndy said breathlessly, “Lucille, you are so lucky…that guy missed you by an inch.” Still, it was one of the best days of my life. As we loitered in the parking lot, peeling off our gear, I noticed Cyndy wrapping hot-pink crepe paper all over my car seat. Then she whipped out a chocolate cake, complete with candles, and a bottle of Cabernet. John borrowed a lighter from a passing skier, and they all sang Happy Birthday.
All I could say in that moment was, “Thank you” – otherwise I would have started blubbering. But my thoughts went something like this: “Sometimes in our lives we may not get all the mothering and fathering like we hoped. Perhaps our parents are dead. Or maybe they just don’t know how to show us love in a way that we can feel it. We may try to demand that kind of love from our family and friends – we must not do that.
Along our journey are people who will offer us bits of mothering and fathering – when it comes, we gladly accept it. Sometimes we might even have to ask for it, but we must allow people to tell us “no” when they do not want to give it. Then we ask someone else or try to meet those needs ourselves.
Other times, we are the ones who offer others those bits of mothering and fathering.
Ultimately, it’s our Heavenly father who offers us the kind of love we need. Once I heard a friend say, “It’s a wonderful thing to suckle at the breast of God.” I was dumbstruck. Never before had I heard someone refer to God with female characteristics, but it is was an image I have never forgotten.
Today I hope that you are able to offer bits of mothering and fathering to those God places in your life. I hope that you are able to accept love from others who celebrate you. Most of all, I hope that you feel the parental love of our God.