I watched my kids weave through the pumpkins, enjoying the sun on my face and the brisk autumn air. From the corner of my eye I caught a glimpse of a mama, belly ready to burst, buying pumpkins with her little one. He was near 3 years old and a cute little button of energy. I observed as she maneuvered around pumpkins with her pumpkin-sized belly, hand holding her sweet, lively boy.
He asked for something, she told him no, and two seconds later he was on the ground flailing in the dirt, letting her know *exactly* what he thought.
I saw the exasperated look in her face, the desperation, the exhaustion, the overwhelmed feelings sweep over her.
And, quick as that, the Lord whispered to me, “Joy, go over there and put your hand on her shoulder. Whisper to her, tell her she is a great mom, encourage her heart right now.”
My immediate response came just a fast, “Lord, she and everyone else here will think I’m nuts! This is America! You don’t just walk over to someone stranger and put your hand on their shoulder!”
He urged me gently again, “She needs your encouragement right now. Go ahead and put your hand on her shoulder and tell her she’s a great mom.”
So I did. I swallowed my embarrassment and my pride and walked over. Face hot and palms sweaty, I put my hand on the dear mama’s shoulder. I quietly whispered, “You are doing such a great job. Hang in there, mama. We have all been there. You are doing a great job.”
She looked up at me, startled, and then grateful. She offered a tear-filled, “Thank you“, and we shared some tears and a smile and the knowing bond of motherhood.
No matter our differences, we all share those desperate mama moments when we need a hand on our shoulder telling us everything will be okay, don’t we?!
Who do you know that could use a hand on their shoulder, an encouraging word spoken, a smile? Are you like me, you don’t want to appear foolish, so you hold back? Here is my challenge…. just do it!!
Are you like the mama at the pumpkin patch? Do you need encouragement today?
Leave a comment and let us put our hand on your shoulder, pray for you, and bless you.
Now, let me whisper to you, “YOU are doing such a great job. Hang in there, mama. We have all been there. YOU are doing a great job. Good job, Mama.“
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