She means business
Listen to me, you islands; hear this, you distant nations: Before I was born the LORD called me; from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name. He made my mouth like a sharpened sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me into a polished arrow and concealed me in his quiver. —Isaiah 49:1-2
She never needed two Colt 45s smoking from each hand as she stood in the center of Main Street in some fictious town named Western Movie. And she didn’t just level people with her words. Sometimes she said nothing but could, in fact, flatten, silence, or 180-degree turn someone around with her demeanor, her presence, or her I’m-not-budging-on-this way of hers.
I am talking of my mother.
“That Dottie,” I’ve heard literally a dozen times in half as many days shortly after her death, “she was a tough one.”
Accurately, she was a strong one—just like this prophet. Don’t mess with me, our writer says here. He adds, if you do want to tangle, just know that when we’re done, I’ll still be standing.
My mother didn’t battle. She wasn’t a fighter. She never had a war. She never had a scar—a line of broken that showed on her skin. She just knew who she was, what she had to do, and when she had to do it.
My mom’s power, just like this prophet’s, is contagious. Yes, you can have it, too. I know this because someone told me in the days before my mom died that I was strong like her. I hadn’t realized it, at least not to the point that was made.
But I am strong. I am a weekly columnist with six young kiddos—one just a baby and one with some special needs—on what could be called a remote location. I have a fulltime job that calls me, as you know, to work in the wee hours of the morning and press two moments into one when I can. No complaints. Just strong.
Specifically, I am strong in the LORD. Don’t mess with that. Actually, you can’t mess with that.
And you can be exactly this way, too. (Or you are this way, too.) Why? Because God is telling you so. There is power in His name, and this power and Spirit transforms you into a sharpened sword and a polished arrow. Stand in His Word and in His way and yes, you will stumble, but you will not fall.
PRAYER: Holy smoking guns! LORD, we reflect Your power. Since You called each of us in our mother’s wombs, keep empowering us—all of us—to do Your will through Your ways of justice, joy, mercy, mindfulness, care, conviction, light and yes, love. Amen.
PHOTO: Dorothy Ann Batz, Trenton High School senior, 1959
What a lovely picture of her! I thought of her yesterday on the way to Scranton as I would periodically call her on my way. And yes, she was a strong woman…something I came to appreciate in the past few years. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone accept their fate with such grace.
Beautifully written. Strong in so many quiet ways. Blessings in your strength.