"All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ" 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (NLT).
After my mother died, I found a shoebox in her closet. Curious, I opened it wondering what she might have owned of archive value. Inside were old Kodaks of her seven children she had birthed over a twenty-year span. As I found my way to the bottom of old postcards and letters, newspaper clippings from the "Atlanta Journal Constitution" caught my eye.
Taking care not to tear the aged articles, I began to read. There was a tale about her great aunt who excused herself while she gathered enough corn to grind into flour to make bread for unexpected guests. A story, accompanied by an artist's rendition of the family car doing a balancing act on the old Atlanta Highway, described their astonishment to see the back tire glide serenely past their car window. A narrative told how a host of migrating birds enjoyed their annual feast of red berries, leaving her best tree void of color. Lastly, and I'm guessing her favorite, was the story of my then two-year-old brother with her best Pyrex dish perched on his head as he joined the other Porterdale neighborhood children as they created their own backyard fashion show.
After surviving years of living in poverty with an abusive husband, who would have ever thought that she could author these finds? I'm picturing her as she read her stories in print. How they must have spoken life to her troubled heart. She was paid a sum of fifty cents for each article. While I'm sure that seemed like gold to her, the true reward was accomplishing something that no one could ever take from her - a comfort - a gift from God - an expression of words.
Prayer for the Day:
Dear Lord, you are the God of all comfort who seeks us out even in our hiding places.
Colleen Capes Jackson is the director of the East Metro Atlanta Christian Writers and can be reached at 404-444-7514.