Four years ago today, she left her cancer-riddled body for the peace and glory of heaven. I miss her. My dad and siblings miss her. Our extended families miss her. But I know without a doubt that we will someday see her again, and in that I rejoice.
When I was a child, Mom was my hero. I loved her open arms, her wisdom in teaching us to love God and His Word, and even her tears when we kids pushed her too far. I always wanted to be just like Mom.
It was many years before I understood a small part of her pain, the hurt she tried so hard to hide. My mother carried deep wounds from her youth that caused an insecurity that haunted her the rest of her life.
In spite of that, because she knew the love of God, she was a woman of joy. She expressed her joy in songs of praise and worship. Mom had a beautiful voice, and she loved to sing songs from her heart. And oh, how she loved Jesus! In Him she found the steady Rock she so desperately needed, and her deepest desire was that her children find that Rock, too. Because of her prayers, teaching and example, we did - all five of us.
Some time ago I was taught that in the Orthodox tradition saints were honored not on the days of their earthly birth, but on the day of their entrance into Heaven. So St. Nicholas' Day, December 6, celebrates the day he died. Because in reality, death is the doorway to eternal life. I love that!
Therefore, I propose that November 13 be known and celebrated as St. Laura's Day in honor of the home-going of this loving saint, my wonderful mother.
Happy St. Laura's Day, everyone!