“You are the God who sees me,” for she said,
“Here I have seen one who sees me!”
— Genesis 16:13
Up before the sun packing lunches, getting kids to the babysitter and school before heading in for a grueling day of work. Pick up kids, make dinner, oversee homework, catch a TV show (if possible) and call it a night — times five. Weekends are devoted to kids’ activities, and on Dad’s weekend, loneliness creeps in. Money stretched too tight and sometimes she thinks they’re not going to make it. But God sees her. He calls out to her in the quiet moments. Does she hear?
In the characteristically quiet way God usually moves, He spoke to the heart of Melanie Russell, a Houston’s First employee, as she was planning her week. What about single moms and Mother’s Day, she wondered. How can we bless the hearts of single mothers?
That well-placed question led to a galvanizing force of generous givers in the Married Young Adult Life Bible Study classes at Houston’s First. Within two weeks, a deluge of gift cards, body lotions, jewelry, and other goodies were donated so that children of single moms could honor and pamper them with a gift basket, lovingly packed with their own hands.
The baskets were just one way single moms would be blessed during the annual Mother’s Day Luncheon, hosted by the Single Parent Family Ministry at Houston’s First. More than 300 people attended the luncheon including 70 moms and 35 Summit Young Single Adult volunteers.
“Mother’s Day is about making moms feel valued,” said Elizabeth Pennington, a single mom of seven (three which were adopted and one who passed away four years ago). “Everything about the luncheon made me feel valued — from the decorations to the gifts — and the speaker was amazing!”
Through the listening heart of a full-time servant of God, to the God-inspired outpouring of generosity in the hearts of married young adults who love single moms, to a local hair salon — enough items were donated to not only put together more than 70 gift baskets, but also to hold four drawings for extra gift baskets.
“Watching the children at the close of the luncheon with armloads of gifts donated by the loving hearts of the Married Young Adults was something I’ll never forget,” said Holly Crain, Young Single Adult Women & Single Families Ministries Associate at Houston’s First. “The mothers were astounded by the generosity, and the children’s hearts were overjoyed that they could give mom such gifts. What an amazing day honoring moms who are parenting alone!”
Knowing moms don’t get nearly the kudos, hugs and attention they deserve, we ask a special blessing for the single mom, for keeping the faith, for staying the course and for raising up a godly generation.
When she thinks nobody sees, God sees.