The Priceless Gift of Being a Mama: Tender Comforter
I’ve seen the same sweet scenario over and over again and experienced it myself with my own children. An elderly lady reaches out longingly to hold some mama’s baby, only to have the little one bury his head in Mama’s shoulder. That’s when the elderly lady says, “Oh, he wants his mama.” Of course he does. She’s his mama.
That precious buried head, the outstretched arms when Mama comes back home, the hug goodnight and the “Please don’t leave me” when the bedroom door is closed are joys of being Mama.
Mamas have the privilege of being the tender comforter of their own little children, bigger children, and grown-up children. In Psalm 131:2, David says, “Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child rests against his mother, my soul is like a weaned child within me.” In 1 Thessalonians 2:7, Paul writes, “But we proved to be gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her children.”
A mother’s role as tender comforter comes from her heart and soul. It springs up out of the love and compassion she feels for her offspring. Tender comfort is also a decision of the will. Tender comfort is soft and cushy, but it is also rock solid. It’s not going anywhere.
I have written recently about President Theodore Roosevelt and his family. His mama was one of those mamas who understood her role as tender comforter. Though her health was delicate, it did not keep her from embracing this role. The future president suffered from severe asthma as a child. In his autobiography he wrote: “One of my memories is of . . . sitting up in bed gasping, with my father and mother trying to help me.”
His sister Corinne wrote this about their mother: “Owing to delicate health she was not able to enter into the active life of her husband and children, and therefore our earliest memories, where our activities were concerned, turn to my father and my aunt, but always my mother’s gracious loveliness and deep devotion wrapped us round as with a mantle.”
In this beautiful autumn season, we have the priceless opportunity to reflect the love of God. We can wrap each of our children “round with deep devotion as with a mantle” — whether they are little ones with their arms wrapped around our legs or grown children with very different needs for comfort. Let’s all do that today in the most tender and intimate way possible.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our affliction
so that we will be able to comfort
those who are in any affliction
with the comfort with which we ourselves
are comforted by God.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4
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