I was having a terrible day at work and I was trying my best to hold it together; but I was in so much agony.
I went outside to the stairwell to cry. The tears flowed. I missed by mom.
As I fixed my glance to look up at the sky and the sun, I thought about the ULTIMATE SACRIFICE that GOD made when he gave His only begotten son Jesus Christ for our sins.
In that very moment I was reminded of my her, my mother, and realized that she too made a GREAT SACRIFICE. She made the decision to give my grandmother custody of me so I could live in the United States; I was only two years old at the time.
I haven’t seen her in 30 years …
Eighteen months prior, she had given up my older sister at six months old. Here she was again, in a similar situation with her second daughter making yet another SELFLESS SACRIFICE.
I don’t remember what my mother said to me on that last day. I cannot even begin to imagine what her PRAYERS were for me. She probably knew agony too well in that moment.
How do you find the words to express a lifetime of LESSONS, MORALS, VALUES and HOPES in 24 hours? Maybe she asked God that one day I would remember her and understand her decision — the SACRIFICE that was made.
How do you pour your heart out to a two-year-old in a way that she will understand? I often think about what I may have been thinking in those final moments, unable to fully comprehend what was going on, but sensing that my life was about to CHANGE in a way that I couldn’t begin to imagine.
Likewise, my GRANDMOTHER, who was now responsible for her second granddaughter made a PROMISE to my mother that she would take care of us.
My aunt tells me that when I first came to the States, I would often sit in the corner with a tear in my eye and I would sing a song.
I couldn’t recall what the song was; however, when she started singing it, I immediately knew the song — I had definitely heard it before …
I could hear my MOTHER’S VOICE singing in that moment.
Unbeknownst to me, I carried my MOTHER in my little two-year-old HEART …
I cried because something was missing, but I couldn’t fully express it. I didn’t have the words to tell my Grandmother that I MISSED MY MOTHER and I needed her badly.
Part of me was missing, and the only part of her that I had left was a SONG. It was at that moment I understood her SACRIFICE and I HAD TO REPENT!
I needed to REPENT for every moment I was upset with her — every moment I resented her. All of the times when I called her SELFISH, and I spoke the SPIRIT OF ABANDONMENT over my life.
I resented her because I felt SHE DIDN’T CARE ABOUT ME …
I spent years feeling as though I was UNWORTHY OF LOVE. If the one person that was created to love me unconditionally gave me up, then how could anyone else TRULY LOVE ME?
I had to REPENT!
I called my mom and I asked for her FORGIVENESS. I apologized for being frustrated and upset with her because I FELT ALONE.
I felt as if I was navigating the world WITHOUT MY MOTHER’S GUIDANCE …
She forgave me and then she asked me to forgive her. She explained to me that she made the BEST DECISION she could at that time under the circumstances.
My mentor once told me that people make decisions based on the information made available to them at that time. Dependant on the circumstance, a person will make decisions based on what they PERCEIVE TO BE THE BEST CHOICE after considering all of the possible options.
Likewise, my MOTHER’S DECISION was based on her situation at that time; however, I would not accept that answer — it wasn’t enough to erase the pain.
It wasn’t until I looked to the Cross that I was able to UNDERSTAND THE SACRIFICE.
If my MOTHER did not make that SACRIFICE, my life would be very different. Many of the opportunities and successes I have now, would’ve been a ream, rather than my reality.
I have survived every obstacle and battle placed in front of me because of her SACRIFICE and PRAYERS.
A mother’s fervent and effectual prayer for her child has impact and strength. I believe HER PRAYERS HAVE CARRIED ME THROUGH.
Her prayers carried me through adolescence, college, and as I have successfully advanced in my professional career.
Where would I be without my mother’s sacrifice? More importantly, where would I be without the SACRIFICE OF JESUS CHRIST?
JESUS was The ULTIMATE SACRIFICE for each and every one of us, so that they may have EVERLASTING LIFE.
LOVE is the ULTIMATE SACRIFICE OF SELF for the good of another.
Give your parents and your loved ones the same GRACE EXTENDED TO YOU by Christ Jesus.
Have the conversation and ask the age old question: Why? Why did you make the decision you made? I’m sure you’ll be surprised by the answer, and I pray that you will receive healing and the peace I received after I forgave my mother at the feet of Jesus.
Tina Limengo was born in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and has lived in New York City and its environs since 1988. Tina graduated Magna Cum Laude from the College of New Rochelle with a degree in social science. She also holds a master's degree in business administration from Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, NY. For the past eleven years, Tina has worked at the Westchester County (NY) Board of Legislators in several communications and administrative roles and is currently the committee coordinator of Budget & Appropriations, Environment Health & Energy and Social Services Committee. She is active both in the Congolese expatriate community in New York, as well as her church community in Jamaica, NY. Follow her on Instagram @TLimengo