Mother Memories


I had to share this picture of my Mom, Ruth with our first child Gretchen, at the very top, who was born in 1987 in South Bend, Indiana. Mom was a devout Christian. You should have seen her Bible….so many notes in it, underlining scripture etc….Her Mom, my grandma, Lena Caraway was the same way. In fact it was Grandma who spoke over me in 1974 that I would become a Preacher one day! It took me awhile!!! LOL!! But I got there! God had to teach me many things from my radio/tv days to become HIS PREACHER! One reason I Preach is because I want to show people love and discipline. My Mom and Grandma, Dad and Grandpa are shining examples on how to love and discipline at the same time. It seems to me much of the world, including Pastors struggle with that, not preparing people for the dark days. It was hard for me to hear the first time, “Bad things happen to good people.” Dad passed away suddenly in 1993 at age 64 on Easter morning of a heart attack and Mom passed away in January of 1995 of cancer at the age of 64. I learned much through that horrible time.

Note: Grandpa Moede passed away when my Dad was 13 and Grandma Moede passed away in 1966. I also posted pictures of my Grandpa and Grandma Caraway and my Mom and Dad. Dad is in his uniform, SGT U.S. Marines, WW II and that is Mom’s graduation picture!

Here is what I posted on Facebook this morning:

My Dear Friends I have written much about tragedies in my lifetime as a Pastor and News Reporter, dating back to 1978, before many of you were born. I was a weekend news reporter at the Minnesota State News Network. This morning I wrote a post at FGGAM.ORG on the current crisis facing America. So many have put their faith in the almighty dollar and government and politicians, almost making them gods! I included this from Billy Graham in my post: Those who keep Heaven in view remain serene and cheerful in the darkest day because they keep the glories of Heaven at the forefront of their thinking. If more people thought less of themselves and material things and more for things eternal and spiritual, they too would be less easily disturbed by this present life.

Nowhere does the Bible teach that Christians are exempt from the tribulations and natural disasters that come upon the world. It does teach that the Christian can face tribulation, crisis, calamity and personal suffering with a supernatural power that is not available to the person outside of Christ.

Thousands of Christians have learned the secret of contentment and joy in trial. Some of the happiest Christians have drunk from the full cup of trial and misfortune. Some have been lifelong sufferers. They have had every reason to sigh and complain, being denied so many privileges and pleasures that they see others enjoy, yet they have found greater cause for gratitude and joy than many who are prosperous, vigorous and strong. God’s purpose in this is to show an unbelieving world that His grace is sufficient.

This was the great testimony of the apostle Paul when he proclaimed in his suffering that the Lord comforted him with these words: “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Paul responded, “Therefore most gladly I will [rejoice] in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me… for when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10).

FGGAM.ORG Biblical Worldview, not a POLITICAL VIEW!

Joni and Friends
Mother Memories

by Joni Eareckson Tada

“Her children arise and call her blessed.”

Proverbs 31:28

This month is my mother’s birthday, and for her I have a message:

Mother, I love the crazy, wonderful way you raised my sisters and me. I remember the time you turned off the oven, untied your apron, and called us to walk with you to watch the sunset. The brilliant splash of pink and purple will stick in my mind forever. I love the way you made us night people. I’m sure it stemmed from the evenings on the back porch when we would watch the moonrise with you and Daddy as you both sang songs from the forties.

How I loved going beach camping and remember your strapping me into that bulky life preserver and tossing me into the waves. I didn’t want to tell you how frightened I was of the gigantic swells. You hung on to my straps, and that was enough to chase the fear. Thank you for helping me to face fright head-on. Mother, do you recall watching Daddy hoist me into my new saddle on Thunder, that big Appaloosa? I cantered into the pasture, whooping and hollering. But I knew you were biting your nails, wondering if I could hang on. I love you for letting me be brave.

And thanks, Mom, for playing hopscotch with me. It seemed embarrassing that you, a grown woman, would toss an oak bark chip and jump around. But on the inside I was proud of you. Thank you for teaching me to appreciate older people. Thank you for teaching me about God. And table manners. For visiting me in the hospital nearly every day for more than a year after I broke my neck. What a mother.

Who taught you the important lessons of life? Write a letter listing a few of the memories you treasure and the lessons you learned. If that person is still alive, send the letter. If not, keep it for yourself as a reminder of how blessed you were.

Lord, thank you for placing in my life people who taught me how to live. Help me to pass on the lessons.

Taken from More Precious than Silver

By Joni Eareckson Tada

Copyright © 1998
Published in Print by Zondervan, Grand Rapids

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version.

For More Inspiration…

People have been asking Joni how she is staying safe through COVID-19. Read about some of the adjustments she and Ken have made to their daily routine on the blog! Read Now

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