Sunday, May 12, 2013

Love Offerings

Today, all over the US, Moms wept over the unexpected beauty of random paper hearts, handmade macaroni jewelry, overcooked muffins (and in my case even carved sticks and leaves held together with grey duct tape). Well meaning children offered gifts of love to the women in their life.

It mattered not that the stubby fingers brought burnt toast, bitter coffee, or misspelled cards. Frankly, it made the treasures all the more endearing. Precious ones brought their best as a love offering and it was received warmly. We weren't weeping over the glitter or glue. Our overflowing hearts were leaking from our tear ducts. Today above all days, it was truly the thought that counted.

This morning as I surveyed the handiwork of these little people, I pondered the words of my mentor, Anita. She encouraged me to remember that even though my children would come proudly bearing gifts they think are all about me, they are really learning to share the gift of themselves.

As those words rolled around in my heart and mind I thought of the lessons to be learned as an adult. What if we, like children, still freely offered the gift of ourselves to God and to others--without fear of rejection or comparison? What if our offerings to the world, to our families and friends were like these handmade gifts, joyfully brought with best intentions?

As a Mama of multiples, I am well versed in the practice of receiving three versions of the same gift. My playroom walls are lined with art projects in triplicate. I frequently hang all three of something up. I don't sit and compare the three in order to rank them. I actually revel in how three little ones can receive the same supplies and instructions yet produce such individual work.

And so it goes with us...each given life and talents.

I like thinking of my gifts being received by a proud, adoring parent--without harsh judgment, comparison or criticism--but with a heart full of love. What a beautiful, comforting thought.

PS. If you haven't yet read this gorgeous piece by Ann VosKamp, I urge you to do so. It is the perfect nightcap for this Mother's Day.

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