Mother’s Apron Strings
Joseph Andrews of Independence, MO, USA
…Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. -Joshua 1:9
It was so commonplace. When my mother came into the kitchen each morning, she reached for her apron hanging on a hook on the wall. She was then ready for action. Cooking, baking, and cleaning everything in sight. She wore that apron almost all day as she labored. It was used in countless ways-to dry her hands, to wrap up a child or dry a tear, to transfer a hot bread pan from oven to shelf, to gather vegetables from the garden, to carry cleaning supplies from room to room. The last thing at night before she went to bed, she returned the apron to its special hook, ready for the next day’s work.
When I was 18, I moved away from home to attend college in another town. Without sufficient financing, one year was all that could be accomplished. The realization that my draft number was coming up soon weighed heavily on me. So I signed on the dotted line and enlisted in the U.S. Navy. For a country boy who had never been out of his home state, this was a huge jump. After the preliminaries, I was sent to boot camp, then to Washington D.C. and beyond, serving in the U.S. Navy Band for four years before returning to college and completing my education to become a teacher.
The letters Mom wrote to me included her undying love, even though I was far from home. When I received cookies from her, I pictured her wearing her apron, expertly kneading and baking homemade bread, mixing cookies by hand, and making nutritious meals out of whatever the garden would provide.
Amidst my loneliness for those home scenes, one day at mail call I heard my name and responded, only to be given a letter from my mom that was a bit fatter than usual. Upon opening it, there was no note of any kind, only her apron strings. A grown guy in the Navy suddenly with tears in his eyes-I got her message loud and clear. Her apron strings were my tie to home. I carefully packed them in the bottom of my duffle bag the remainder of my service. Her love reached out to me no matter how far away I was sent.
Just so, God sends us out into the world with his continual abiding love. We can never forget our tie to His “apron strings.”
My ordinary life is a sacred place.
“…our everyday ordinary lives are also sacred places, or put another way, the sacred place of our living. As dwellers within the Sacredness of Creation, there is potential to be aware and appreciate the holy within the ordinary. You may remember times when it felt like you were seeing the world through God’s eyes. That’s a good description for what it means to live sacramentally-to sense divine Spirit amid daily activities.” -Jane M. Gardner, “Sacramental Living,” September/October 2019 Herald, p. 5
How are you invited to live sacramentally today?
Today’s Prayer for Peace
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