A Parable For Mothers

by Temple Bailey

The Young Mother set her foot on the path of life.  “Is the way long?” she asked.

And her Guide said, “Yes, and the way is hard.  And you will be old before you reach the end of it.  But the end will be better than the beginning.”

But the young mother was happy, and she would not believe that anything could be better than these years.  So she played with her children, and gathered flowers for them along the way, and the sun shone on them, and life was good.  The young Mother cried, “Nothing will ever be better than this.”

Then night came, and a storm, and the path was dark and the children shook with fear and cold, and the Mother drew them close and covered them with her mantle.  And the Mother said, “This is better than the brightness of day for I have taught my children courage.”

The morning came and there was a hill ahead, and the children climbed and grew weary, and the Mother grew weary but she said, “A little patience and we are there.”  So the children climbed, and when they reached the top, they said, “We could not have reached it without you.”  And the Mother when she lay down that night looked up at the stars and said, “This is a better day than the last, for my children have learned fortitude in the face of hardness.  Yesterday I gave them courage.  Today I have given them strength.”

The next day came strange clouds which darkened the earth — clouds of war and hate and evil, and the children groped and stumbled, and the Mother said,  “Look up.  Lift your eyes to the light.”  That night the Mother said, “This is the best day of all for I have shown my children God.”

The days went on and the weeks and the years.  The Mother grew old, and she was little and bent.  Her children were tall and  walked uprightly.  When the way was hard, they helped her.

At last they came to a hill.  The Mother said, “I have reached the end of my journey.  And now I know that the end is better than the beginning, for my children can walk alone, and their children after them.”

And the children knew that she would always walk with them.  And they said, “She is still with us.  A Mother like ours is more than a memory.  She is a Living Presence.”

Author Unknown


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