22 July 2016

Learning From Hurtful Memories

Grateful For Having Born Fruit

Some time ago I mourned my mother's release from the body along with relatives.

My nephew had put together a montage of pictures of our relatives from holidays, vacations and other family functions.

The flush of memories, emotions and regrets from watching the images was quite overwhelming to experience.

I held my breath trying to keep my composure.

One image in particular was a side profile of her as she sat on the deck of a cruise ship overlooking the ocean, like she was contemplating something (my interpretation of the image).

I couldn't hold back the tears.

My regrets were me failing to meet certain expectations my mother had for me.

Expectations not in gifts or worldly aspirations from me or of me, but her desire for me to be a good man... not the rebellious man she had seen.

An early motivation of mine in pursuing financial wealth was to give my mom that fancy car in her favorite color that she always wanted.

This was my method of addressing “I'm sorry” regarding how I've hurt her.

Another human effort of mine was hoping to have her retire as early as possible by me providing for her every need and want... like a prodigal son returning from his worldly pursuits.

Things didn't turn out the way I had aspired them to.

One effort I did accomplish was taking her on a couple of trips, in gratitude for the many vacation destinations she took me and my siblings.

Of course, the 'things' are all based on material possessions attempting to attain happiness, or turn a wrong into a right.

This is where my thought process was.

I guess I was reflecting the manner a parent buys something for a child to express their love for them, in an effort to make them happy or appease them... and me attempting to return the favor.

The greater regrets were the many times I had disappointed her; with my drug abuse, outlandish lifestyle, verbal disrespect, obvious hypocrisy and duplicity.

This self-destruction was how I had been hurting my mother.

In recent years when I introduced her to my wife, my mother realized that her prayer for her son to be on a fruitful path had been answered.

Reflecting on Christ, I desired to honor my mother in all ways I could, as He did His mother.

Reflecting Today on Christ, I can relinquish the sorrow from these sins towards my mother when I realize He has made all things new.

I recall how Christ comforted His mother as He hung on the cross... and how I comforted my mother as she laid dying in bed, reminding her of God's love for her, holding her hand, praying over her, thanking her for the love she had for me and her forgiveness of the trouble I had caused her... and I praise His Holy Name!!!

Reflecting on the ways I hurt my mother allows me one way to understand how precious the gift of grace and forgiveness is; the underserved forgiveness by God of my mountain of sins against my mother (and so many others).

These failures are the impressions evident on the personal cross I carry, just as Christ carried and was hung on His cross for these many sins of mine.

I can thus understand His sacrifice for me which grants me respite from my sins.

The peace from this faith absorbs and saturates my feelings, emotions, regrets, sadness and memories of the pain caused to my mother... and extinguishes this regret forever to oblivion.

Only the memories may cause sadness, while His salvation brings refreshment and peace.

The material possessions I desired to spoil my mother with are nothing compared to the light and heavenly abode she now resides in.

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