No one can ever judge the love of a parent to their children. I have two girls who are wonderful people in spite of some of the mistakes I have made with them.
Over the last 7 years with our friends at HHSM, I have talked about both of my girls a lot, the great stuff and some of the struggles. I have also been privy to many moms and dads stories of love, laughter and a lot of pain and I have found a parent’s love is the same no matter where you are in life.
We have a lot of friends who for many different reasons have never had their children live with them, but their love for them is just as strong as the love I have for my children. Now I realize it’s easy to judge the mother of a child who struggles with the addiction that she herself couldn’t control (we love to judge them even more harshly than the dads don’t we), but her love for her child doesn’t change.
I also know that when we see a young mother with a big belly well before she is even done puberty, we want judge. We want to say she is irresponsible and unable to love; sometimes we may even be right in thinking that.
But what I want to tell you is that time after time I hear their stories full of love.
From the alcoholic whose addiction has taken away his ability to show the love he has so deep in his heart. So strong his heart is ready to burst because it’s so full, and when it does, the sound of his love is silenced by the muffled drunken voice behind the bottle.
To the mother crying because of the choice to feed her kids the only way she knows how-selling her body to the suburban Dads. Only to lose them to a system that has nothing to offer her except parenting classes and a minimum wage job to get her children back. She lets them go to the system because she knows there aren’t enough hours in the day working minimum wage to pay her rent, feed her kids and buy them clothes. Besides what else is she good for; no education, no family support. A heart full of love ready to burst, and when it does, it’s muffled by the sound of a car radio playing and a moment that makes Jesus cry for the little girl who was lost in this mom so long ago. More importantly she has no idea that there is a Father that loves her, loves her for who she is, right in this moment on the street.
Love is always a part of every parent. Yes even the addict and the prostitute can love. And they do love their children. Their hearts are so full of love for their kids that they could burst and without the love being muffled by pain and addiction and hopelessness, their love would fill the room with the same hopes and dreams I have for my girls.
Thank goodness God loves all of His children with the kind of love we can only pray to have.
A kind of love that sees all our mistakes and garbage; but loves us anyway.