To the son (or daughter) of the mom who’s now doing the church thing,
I attend church with your mom. She’s part of my church family, much like she’s part of your family.
From time to time, we sit around a table together and open our Bibles. Two very different journeys have brought us to this place. We share a common belief that God provided us, His loved ones, with all of life’s answers in the pages of His Word.
Now, before you go and get defensive, the answers don’t come clearly in black and white, word for word. We too still sit with questions and doubts. These make us human, just like you.
Our answers come to us through faith and relationship. They settle in our hearts and souls as we draw closer to our Creator. We learn about His faithfulness and His love for us. We read stories that illustrate not only does He always tell the truth; He is truth.
Your mom has told me about her own childhood. How she attended a church for years but they never told her that this God they prayed to was her personal Savior. How he would have sent His only Son, Jesus, to die just for her. Only her. And only you.
She’s shared how her family had to attend church every time the doors were open. And maybe other people in her church got the message the pastors and teachers were sending, but she never did.
Then she brought you into the world. Oh, she loved you so very much. Like any good mother does. She gave you the very best parts of her, as much as she was able to do so.
But the pattern continued. She took you to church, like she’d been taught to do. Maybe she didn’t force it on you, because she remembered how much she resented that. So you only went a few times a year. Or maybe she did force you to go, because it’s all she knew. Now, you too are through with that religion stuff.
At some point, probably through a great loss or at the bottom of some emotional pit, your mom realized she needed more. So much more. She remembered just enough from the words she’d heard in these church walls over the years. In her desperation, she decided to give it one more try.
Jesus met her there. Not in the words she’d memorized and could say in her sleep. Certainly not in any church aerobics. He found her in verses like these:
We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)
Your mom realized, for the first time in her life, Jesus loved her. A real, everlasting love. He wanted to reveal Himself to her through His Word.
She learned that His church isn’t a place where we have to go. We church because it’s where we can learn more about Jesus. We get the opportunity to live in love and harmony with other believers. We have a loving pastor who leads us into deeper relationship. Your mom doesn’t go to church out of obligation anymore. No one forces her to go.
I know your arguments. The church gets so many things very wrong a lot. We are hypocritical. We fall into a love for money and possessions. Sinners. This is all true too.
But what your mom has found, what she’d give anything to share with you, is a peace that passes understanding. Her soul is settled. She’s learned that faith is a process. A messy road for sure but beautiful. Jesus helps her every step of the way. She didn't know this all those years ago.
It starts with saying,
Jesus, I realize I can’t do this life all on my own. I believe you came to help me. Please reveal yourself to me. Amen
Maybe, some Sunday, you could join your mom at church. Side by side in the pew, you could start to see what she’s learned about relationship. In the meantime, we'll keep praying for you.