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Well, it’s finally here! Mother’s Day has arrived. Ladies, get all you can and can all you get! Because next month it’s the guys’ turn, and they ain’t playin’ around with Father’s Day. Soak up all the love, display all your flowers, eat all your candy (well, not in one sitting), and read every single card – twice. Bask in the glow of your family’s approval and appreciation. Wish everyone you see a happy mother’s day and floss, floss, floss in your new church outfit!

It is right and good to enjoy a hard-earned rest and to celebrate with our loved ones. Even if you find yourself handling preparations this Mother’s Day, be thankful, because it probably means that your mother is still living. Praise God! He hand-picked her for you and you for her. He did the same for you and your children. Remember, in his perfect wisdom he knows the exact combination of good and “bad” experiences needed in your life to mold your character into that of our Savior’s. So even if your mom was more of a “horrible warning” rather than a “good example,” thank God for her anyway.

My best friend and author, Ingrid Michelle, who is a mother and daughter herself, reminds me often, “Chew the meat and spit out the bones, Sheeri.” And I find that I am able to apply that philosophy to almost every area of my life – especially to my relationship with Mommy. I have learned a lot from my mother – some good, some less than good. Likewise, my children are learning from me (Father, I hope what they are learning is mostly good). With four of my own, I can honestly say that I understand my mother so much better than I did before having children. And I have come to the conclusion that although there were some bones, Mommy gave me a lot of good meat!

Because of her guidance, love, patience, and extremely high standards in – oh everything – I am more of the woman God created me to be. Even our struggles (read: infighting) have worked in my favor. It seems God has blessed us with identical temperaments, which often work as much against us as they do for us. Did I mention that our Father has a sense of humor? But He also works in everything for my good. To that end, he has used my mother to push me to examine my beliefs, to remind me to take no blessing for granted, and to maintain a standard of excellence as the starting point of my daily existence.

My life is richer because I am Vera Caldwell’s daughter. I hope that you can say the same about your mother. And if you can’t, honor her anyway, even if it’s only in your heart. Because one thing is certain, however you categorize your relationship with your mother, without her, you would not be here.  That alone is reason enough to bless her and to praise God!  Happy Mother’s Day!

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