Better than a grand gesture

As the flurry of preparing for Mother’s Day rose and subsided, I stopped to think about it; what gift can be bought for someone who has lived, sacrificed for and defended us our whole life?

Remembering the annual struggle to get a Mother’s Day card out of our son I told him not to bother this year, because he shows me most days that he cares about me. I only had to mention hoovering and he went and did it. That was better than a card.

My artistic daughter loves making cards but the times she spontaneously comes to me with her arms stretched out are even more precious. My husband did buy me flowers for no particular reason a week ago, but knowing that he had walked through a pandemic-infected hospital to find me was worth a thousand bouquets. Or more.

I watched a fairly harried man grab a gift box in the shop yesterday and I wondered about the experiences and feelings behind it. Was it just because someone had reminded him what day it was or was it because he felt he had to,

or was it out of love?

Next time you spend money on a gift, next time you feel guilty about forgetting a birthday, think about what matters most: showing someone you love them as often as you can doesn’t have to involve a grand gesture. It can be as simple as being there when they need you.

The flowers will fade, the cards will be put away, but the love behind them will last a lifetime.

My sister sent me a poem shared by Tearfund yesterday that fits perfectly with this thought. I’ll leave it here for you…


It’s not always the big miracles –
the thunderous, pulsating,
ground-shaking ones –
but those that are small,
delicate, unheralded:

like when the sobs finally stop.
Or when the anxiety begins to fade.
Or when the blackbird decides
that there is enough light
to begin praising the new day.

It’s when your broken heart
eventually accepts
that it can begin to heal,
or when the delicate stem
pushes through the dirt
to discover that air and light are real.

It may just be
to open your eyes
after a night at the end of your rope,
to find that your lungs
are way ahead of you
and never stopped breathing in hope.

It’s not the big miracles,
not the ones that shout
and shine,
it’s the small miracles
that are sent to show us
the loving hand
of the divine.

Gideon Heugh

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