Butler County Times Gazette
  • Marketta Gregory: Grace is enough

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  • By Marketta Gregory
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    Hey, mothers. Moms. Aunts and cousins and friends who do your very best to nurture others. I hope all the people you love made you feel special this Mother’s Day. I hope they held the door open for you, pampered you with your favorite foods and hugged your neck until it was hard to breathe – both because of the closeness and because of the joy.
    But I hope one thing above all: I hope this time you listened and started to believe you really are good at mothering.
    Oh, I know what you’re thinking. You’re OK at this gig, but you mess up a lot. You get impatient. You let them watch too much TV. You aren’t as consistent with bedtime as you need to be. You need to find more ways to connect.
    All of that may be absolutely true. Remember, though, that mothering doesn’t come with a checklist or a scorecard. Instead, it comes with its own share of grace.
    So, when that 3-year-old calls you his friend and the 6-year-old says he is impressed with your beauty? Smile. Say thank you. And believe the truth. You are cherished, and you were chosen for this family, for these very people.
    Sure, hard times will come, times that test those ties. But don’t assume that’s because of bad mothering. We all make mistakes, and sometimes it’s a mistake to blame ourselves.
    So many of us have fallen in this trap of always feeling guilty, always feeling less than. We think this is humility. We think this is how we push ourselves to get better.
    But, friends, may I cup my hand under your chin and lift your head higher for a moment? Let me look you in the eyes and tell you this: Beating yourself up doesn’t make you better. It just keeps you down.
    If you want to improve for God, for yourself, for the people you love, then it’s grace you need. Grace speaks to your soul and whispers that you are forgiven. Grace puts its arms under yours and lifts you back to your feet. Grace dusts you off and sets you free to be the woman you were meant to be.
    God’s grace is sufficient for you, lovely mama. It’s sufficient for you, dear aunt. It’s sufficient for all of us.
    Now, go in peace and in confidence.
    Do the work you are called to do.
    Marketta Gregory is a former religion reporter who now shares her own journey of faith with readers. She lives in Rochester, N.Y., with her husband, their three young boys and one very vocal Pomeranian. To contact Gregory, email markettagregory@yahoo.com or write to her at P.O. Box 12923, Rochester, NY 14612. You can also visit the Simply Faithful page on Facebook and follow her on Twitter (@MarkettaGregory).

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