June 7, 2017
On this day 103 years ago, my mother was born in a sod house in northwest Nebraska. Early in life, her family moved to Colorado, where she spent the rest of her years. At age 19, she married my father and became the mother of five children.
Mother completed only eight years of formal education, but she had the wisdom of a professional. She did not make speeches, write books or run for political office, but it would take volumes to record her life and influence.
When I was a young child, we nearly lost my father to a ruptured appendix. Caught up in my own worries, I was rather unaware of what Mother must have felt. She was expecting her fifth child, but she handled the near loss with grace and calmness. I wonder what was going through her mind as she faced reality and made me feel secure.
Doing life was not easy in those days. There were few conveniences, years of drought, and the loss of her mother and sister way too soon. I do not recall hearing her complain, saw only a few tears, and remember her as a diligent and consistent wife and mother.
She had a great sense of humor. Most Saturday evenings she enjoyed reading Capper’s Weekly, a newspaper out of Kansas. Without warning, she would burst into laughter, sometimes to the point of tears, as she read something funny. It got our attention, and we listened as she shared the story, sometimes not nearly as humorous as watching her enjoy it.
Burned into my memory is Mother kneeling in prayer by her bed at the end of the day. Although I have lived all of my adult years far from Colorado, I am sure she did this as long as she was able. And I know that each of us kids, along with many other people, were in those prayers.
Of all that I could write about Mother today, the one word that describes her is “faithful.” I am continually grateful for her and the part she played in making me who I am today. It is a joy to pay tribute to her on her birthday.
Pastor Bill Ehmann