We credit mothers with many attributes. For example, there’s nurturing. Sacrifice. Reassurance. Encouragement. And wisdom … which we rarely appreciate until long after we receive it!
One attribute that may not come to mind immediately when you think of mothers is courage, but when you meet the mothers who call Sheltering Wings home, that’s the one that stands out.
A year ago, most of them probably couldn’t imagine that they would spend their next Mother’s Day under our roof. It isn’t that the abuse they suffered was a new development. In most cases, it had been building for a very long time. Possibly since the early days of their relationships. But one day, something happened that made them decide they had enough. Something made them gather their children, leave home, and walk through our doors.
Could “running away” to a shelter be an act of courage? Consider what was involved. They had to leave the security of a familiar home and most of their possessions. They didn’t have time to gather photographs and treasured mementos. They left nearly all of their clothing in dressers and closets. They may not have even had time to grab the small items of personal hygiene we all take for granted — toothbrushes, combs, soap … all left behind. They walked away from everything they have ever owned, knowing they might never see any of it again. Often, all they carried in their arms were their children.
They walked through the door of a place they had never seen, and they agreed to place their lives … and those of their children … in the hands of complete strangers. Would we have the courage to do that?
This Mother’s Day, their children will give them handmade cards and gifts, and they’ll share smiles and tears with the other women around them. By next Mother’s Day, they may be celebrating in a new home. One built upon love, faith, respect, and safety. They’ll never forget the Mother’s Day they spent in a place called Sheltering Wings, where complete strangers cared for them and their children … and helped them discover additional courage and confidence they didn’t know they had.
As you celebrate Mother’s Day with your family, please take a moment to say an extra prayer for the mothers and children who are safe within our shelter, thanks to your generous and ongoing support.
In His service,
P.S. If you’d like to do something special for our mothers during the month of May (or anytime throughout the year), you can visit our Wish List at www.ShelteringWings.org/wish-list for ideas.