March 29–Awe and Wonder: Born Again, and Again . . .

I loved my mom my whole life and I love her still in my heart. In her whole life on this earth she was doing the very best that she could with what she had to live through herself – her religion was what sustained her. It was also what divided us.

I’ve been born again.

And again… and again….

I think that’s it for now. But I don’t know for sure.

I was born again for the first time during a nursery Sunday School class where I knelt down and confessed my sins, asked the Lord to forgive me of my sins, and accepted Jesus Christ into my heart as my personal Lord and Savior. For my mother,  that was everything. For me, it was the beginning of my spiritual awakening.

I was Pentecostal until I married Bob and became a Methodist.

I spent a great deal of weekly phone time with mom trying to convince her how Christian Methodists were and how we believed the very same things the Pentecostals did.

When Miriam was two and half, we left the Methodist church and became Catholic. This was unacceptable for my mother. She said I would spend an eternity in hell regretting this path I had chosen.

I was born again when she said that. I realized that if her faith was so small and so righteous that it would now exclude me – I would have to be OK without her approval.

The last time I saw mom on this earth I helped wash her, put on a fresh diaper, and get her in bed. The next day I sat in the living room at the piano and we sang all of her favorite hymns – “There’s Room at the Cross”, “Some Glad Morning”,  “God Answers Prayer”, and “Amazing Grace” among others.

Her final words to me were, “That was so nice. Thank you. Do I know you? Are you my new neighbor?”

And I was born again – again. Because, I realized that she didn’t know me. In my whole life she did not take the time to know me. And as I let go of her again,  and mourned that loss, there was a rebirth in me.

My journey is my salvation. Maybe one day mom and I can talk about all of this… but it will depend on whether or not she’s been born again.

Lydia Patrick

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