Things I Still Thank My Mom For

Mother’s Day generates the highest sales of cards, flowers, candies, and long-distance phone calls of any day of the year.  It’s a time to tell your Mom again how much she means to you…a time to say, thank you and I love you.


My Mom, Phyllis Roehl, has been in heaven for almost seven years, so I no longer purchase cards, candies, or flowers to let her know I love her.  I think about her often, reliving precious memories and remembering the wisdom she poured into me.  I can’t verbally tell her how much I love her anymore.  Yet, I can still show my thanks to her by the way I live.  Here are some things I still thank my mom for…they have shaped who I am and how I live.


1.I’m thankful for her unconditional love.  She loved me at my best, my worst, and everything in-between. On my worst days, my Mom’s love was a constant reassurance. Thanks, Mom.


2. I’m thankful for her love of beauty. She loved growing and arranging flowers.  Her floral arrangements adorned the altar at our church often.  Though I didn’t like weeding the garden or flowerbeds, I sure learned to appreciate the results.  Because of her love of beauty, I see the holiness of beauty more often  and in more ways. Thanks, Mom.


3. I’m thankful for her encouragement.  She saw potential where I didn’t.  She cheered my initial efforts. I write today because she first believed I could be a writer and told me so.  Thanks, Mom.


4. I’m thankful for her sensitivity to people. My Mom noticed others.  She paid attention to what they were feeling and saying.  Sometimes she felt things too deeply, but her sensitivity to others helped model for me what a pastor’s heart could be like.  As a pastor, it made a big difference in ministering to people. Thanks, Mom.


5. I’m thankful that she treated her sons and granddaughters equally.  I’m the oldest of three rascally boys.  We three boys and our wives had nine children…all girls!  After raising boys like us, I think God’s reward to her was lots of granddaughters!  Yet, she did her best to treat us all equally.  When she bought one gift, she bought nine of the same gift!  Treating others with equal value and respect is a great gift I still benefit from. Thanks, Mom.


6. I’m thankful for how she delayed her dreams for our success.  My Mom was a smart, sharp woman.  Yet, she delayed her dreams until she’d raised and released her sons into their futures.  Then she pursued and acquired a bachelor’s and master’s degree and became a college professor. Putting our needs ahead of her dreams is one of the finest examples of servanthood I’ve ever seen.  Thanks, Mom.


7. I’m thankful for her spiritual legacy.  My Mom loved Jesus. She was spiritually curious. She made it a point to invest in our spiritual development.  She never stopped praying for us.  I want to leave a legacy like that for my children, grandchildren, and others God allowed me to serve.  Thanks, Mom.


While I’m remembering my Mom, let me add a memory from my Dad.  Standing in our driveway on a warm summer night, Dad gave me a priceless principle of advice that I’ve benefitted from ever since: “Son, always remember to say thank you.”

Two of the most powerful words we can use with people are “Thank You”.  The more you use them, the more powerful they become for others. Start with your Mom…she deserves it and she’s a great person to start with.  Then…keep it up!  May your gratitude a way of life.  My Mom did. 

Thanks, Mom.


Coach Yourself Forward

1. What about your mom are you thankful for?  If your Mom is still alive and you are able to talk with her, make it a point to share with her specific stories, sayings, and why you are so grateful for her.  


2. If your Mom is no longer with you, take some time to tell someone else why you are grateful for your mom.