Monday, January 24, 2011

"I'm Peculiar"

This morning I was reading the Daily Bread, something I have not been keeping up with. I was flipping back and reading past devotionals. The past year I have been doing daily readings out of "The One Year NIV Devotional New Testament," foreword by Alistair Begg. Doug and I also listen to and support Pastor Begg online.

Some of you know that since 2008 my Mom had become a daily part of my day, and recently has moved into assisted living needing daily care and shouldn't be left alone. The day she abruptly moved into my life was when one of my sisters called me to inform me that the Alaska State Troopers had picked up Mom at a small convenience store near her place (2 miles). The store keeper had called to report an elderly woman sitting out on their porch for several hours. Mom had slowly walked there with Odessa, their old family dog. Later Mom would tell me that Odessa had told her, "It's time for us to leave." I asked her why and she said Odessa told her that my brother might just kill them both so they needed to leave right then. So began my adventure with Mom. Never knowing if what she talked about was a true story, or if she had dreamed it.

She came to live with us that day. We could not send her back to live with my drunken brother if he had made threats to her and their ol' dogs well-being. (The day the troopers picked up Mom they took Odessa to the dog pound, she was so old.) My brother seemed to be out of hand with his drunkenness and needed help. In 2008 I felt I had my hands full adjusting to Mom living with us so felt I could not help my brother too. Mom and I were not close in the previous years. She had always made her life with my brother, and two of my sisters. They all seemed a family unit that my own family did not fit in with, but that's another story. Mom stayed with us a year, then she visited with other family members and finally made her way back "home" with my youngest brother where she was when he died in July.

One day we picked her up from the airport so that she could go to a family wedding. Mom ended up being angry and frustrated and didn't want to be there anymore so I walked her to the car. She wanted to wait there rather than be with everyone. She felt that she had been snubbed by one of our family. She said, "Because I am different, I am peculiar and people are embarrassed of me." She cried.

Just recently I brought Mom to the clinic, I saw an aloofness towards Mom from a young girl sitting in the lobby. That has stuck in my mind and it came back to me this morning while I read the Daily Bread. I don't see any reason for that and figured she must have been someones crabby little teenager.

Doug had wheeled Mom in her wheelchair into the lobby then Mom and I sat down to wait for her to be called while Doug went to run errands. The wind was howling that day and every time the door opened the cold wind made me shiver. I worried that Mom was cold even though she always says she isn't when I ask. I got up anyway and moved her. I tried to smile at this young lady while we moved and she rolled her eyes and turned her head. Stuck-up little thing - I grumpily thought. We sat down then she tossed her head, got up, and moved away for no apparent reason. Her attitude didn't bother me but I was glad that Mom had not noticed.

That little instance made me remember Mom saying that people, even her own children think that she is "peculiar" and now while I was reading the Daily Bread I thought of that day. Mom is not peculiar but she totally believes that lie. She has lived her life from that vantage point. It has colored everything she says and does and everything bad that happens to her she sees as repayment. That single day there were more "hello's" "how are you's" and smiles, even hugs than that one instance of a mad little juvenile, probably delinquent!

This reminds me that I need to check my thoughts and the lies that are tossed my way every day in the spiritual battle for my mind. Jesus Christ loves me... so much He left glory... to die! It was not a glorious death, He carried a cross of shame for me. Wow. How much He loves His Creation - me, Mom, you. Believe the words of Jesus Christ, not the Accuser telling you lies that you are peculiar or that you are worthless.

The Outcast, Our Daily Bread

Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent." John 6:29