It’s Okay Not to Be Okay
“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Philippians 1:6 (NLT)
My darling mom died two years ago. I miss her every day. I don’t think anything quite prepares you for saying goodbye to your mom. After her funeral in Scotland, I stayed several days to help my sister, Frances, go through Mom’s things. One treasure I brought home was the little Bible that always sat by her bed. She’d received it in December of 1942, when she was 13 years old. She wrote on one of the blank pages, “Grace is undeserved favor. It is love stooping.”
We spent several hours going through Mom’s big red box of family photographs. “Did you really mean to have purple hair?” my sister asked with a smile, holding up a photo that showed one of my more creative choices. “Yes,” I said, grinning back. “Sadly, that was intentional.”
I paused on a photograph from the day I graduated from seminary. I remember that day so well. I was 21 years old. My hair in that season was dark and very short. I had to have most of it cut off after a disastrous experiment with a perm. I looked at my smiling face, confident I would now go out and change the world for Jesus. I remember my mom saying to me that day: “God began this good work in you, Sheila, and He will continue His work until you see Him face-to-face.” I wish I’d listened to those words more carefully. I wish I’d understood the liberating truth that God is the one who begins His work in us, and He will complete it. I thought it was up to me.