My mom loved a good quote. In fact, a kitchen wall is decorated with quotes and sayings she had heard and liked. Some humorous. Some profound. A few written by her children (my parents were always our biggest fans). All framed and still on display.
In the early 80’s mom took a class learning calligraphy. A talent was born. She believed in sharing talents so she created numerous plaques for people. Her specialties were baby and wedding plaques. Using her printing talents, she created beautiful handmade plaques to mark special events. Her family members were always the biggest beneficiaries. We received homemade, handmade cards. Sometimes, when she heard a particularly moving quote, we received the saying framed and printed in with her calligraphy.
This is one of her favorites. She made this for each of us and herself and placed them in frames for us to display. Hers hung on her wall for many years.
This is an example of my mom’s testimony. Under her watchful, loving care I received the first seeds of faith. I didn’t learn to read my scriptures because she told me to. I learned to read them by watching her study and mark in her scriptures. I didn’t learn to attend church every Sunday because she made me. I learned the importance of church attendance because she never missed a Sunday. I didn’t learn to pay tithing because she suggested it. I learned to pay it by watching her pay an honest tithe. I didn’t learn to bear my testimony because she thought I should. I learned by listening to her bear her testimony whenever given the chance. I didn’t learn to trust in Heavenly Father because she said so. I learned trust by watching her trust and hold onto the iron rod. I didn’t learn to love Jesus Christ because she thought I should. I learned by witnessing her love for the Savior.
Some who read this may not understand. I suppose there will be those who will misunderstand and think I believe simply because my mother believed. Perhaps even thinking one’s faith is nothing more than mere tradition. That is not true. If that were true, I probably would have thrown in the towel by now. There comes a point in everyone’s life when a person must find out for him or herself. And that sure witness cannot come from another person.
It’s like an apple seed. A seed is only beginning but no fruit can come from the seed itself. An apple comes from the seed being planted, nourished, and becoming a tree. But an apple should always be grateful for the lowly seed that started its journey.
And that is why I’m thankful for my mom. Because of her example, I learned who to trust. How to have faith. And what the gospel in action looks like. The seed of faith she offered has become a nourishing tree that has sustained me. I now know and trust that because of that first Easter morning so many years ago, I will get to hug her again.
For that, I am eternally thankful.