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  • Shawn Thornton

My Mother's Hope

Saturday - May 8th

Scripture to Read Today: Revelation 21:1-5

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. Revelation 21:4


My mother and father experienced a head-on car crash in the spring of 1962. My mom, Beverly Gilvin, was 14, and my dad, John Thornton, was 17 when the collision occurred. They had only been dating a few months and did not know each other well. They were driving to pick up her older sister from work at a local store when the accident happened.


Dad had a severe concussion and many cuts. Mom had a few abrasions and was knocked unconscious by hitting her head on the car's dashboard. Her fifteenth birthday occurred on May 19, 1962, while she was still out and unresponsive. She would not wake up for over three months.


When mom woke up, she had to learn to walk, talk, and simply function all over again. In the summer of 1962, few medical facilities had any physical or speech therapy. So, the hospital sent her home to learn to walk and talk again with little guidance. She got no help with the mental, emotional, and psychological impact she felt from the accident. Without the proper recovery tools, mom was left with physical, mental, and emotional challenges for the rest of her life.


In many ways, mom’s life was filled with torment for her. She had balance issues that caused her to fall often. Her balance issues would eventually cause her death as she fell, hit her head, and drowned in the bathtub at the age of 52. She struggled to walk properly. Her fine motor skills left her movements as slow and cumbersome. She had headaches and other physical challenges her entire adult life. Mentally, she short-circuited with bursts of anger, sadness, and even inexplicable joy or laughter. Depression and anxiety ruled so much of her mental health.


Mom struggled with some of the simplest things in life. Cleaning the house, making a meal, getting dressed, and other everyday tasks overwhelmed mom. She longed to be whole. As a follower of Christ, she looked forward to the day she would be with Jesus. She knew that Revelation chapter twenty-one promised freedom from tears, pain, disease, sin, and mourning when we are with Christ. She talked about it a lot.


In her torment, mentally, she latched on to the hope of being made new and whole in Christ in Heaven! In some of the roughest, emotional outbursts in her life, she would remind herself and her family of the hope offered in the Lord.


Her hope became my hope. I came to Jesus as a child. I heard her long to be free from the groaning of this life and looking forward to the renewal promised her in the next. I, too, latched on to that hope through the example of my mother. As I think of my mom this Mother's Day weekend, I know she is free from the physical, mental, and emotional encumbrances she suffered so deeply in this life. She is whole. She has been made new.


No matter what your struggles and battles of life are today, remember that this too shall pass. One day, if you know Christ, you will be free of all that weighs heavy on you now. My mother's hope is the hope of every follower of Christ. This life and its burdens are temporary. Heaven and its blessings are permanent.


Make a list of the top three or four burdens you face in your life. Imagine those things being wholly resolved. Thank God for the promise that one day you will be whole, made new in Christ!


One day Christ will remove all pain, sorrow, and tears - making all things new! In our groaning now, this is our great hope!

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