As a kid, and especially as a teenager…those stupid ‘I know everything’ years, I like many kids thought my mother, Collene Spencer couldn’t possibly understand life as it was in my day. I think we all thought our parents were ‘older than dirt’ in our teen years. Then, we grow up and become parents, and suddenly, we find out how much our parents really did know. I found out that my mom was really a wise woman. Yes, she was wise in the ways of raising a family and managing a household, but my mom was also very wise in the ways of the Lord. I think if she had chosen to, she could have been an evangelist…not that she wasn’t really. What ’embarrassed’ me, was simply my mom telling anyone who would listen, about the Lord. When this happened in stores and such, I wanted to crawl under the floor. I kept thinking, “Mom, they don’t want to hear that…from you or anyone else!! Please leave them alone!!” Of course, I was wrong to do that. Mom saw what I didn’t…a person in need of the Lord. I can only imagine how many people she brought to Jesus…either that she knew of or that she never knew of. Knowing my mom, she immediately claimed Isaiah 55:11 over them, which says, “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
Mom knew her Bible, and could be found reading it, listening to it, or listening to Bible teachings every day…pretty much all day. It was only after her passing on February 22, 2015, that I really knew that quietly, behind the scenes, my mom had been ‘secretly’ sharing the gospel with people, and many were saved because of her. She also had a way of being a type of counselor to people…not people with real big problems, necessarily, but just a person who could be counted on to listen when needed. That truly was my mom. She always had an ear to hear, and a caring heart. She was a person who always gave of herself and anything she had, if someone needed it. So many people have told me since her graduation to Heaven, that she was there for them with just the right words, when they needed them most. It was truly ‘Mom’s Secret Legacy’ and so welcomed by so many.
It was her secret, probably because she knew that her girls (I was probably the worst) would try to have her not do the work she felt led to do. She did of course, talk to all of her family, as well as her siblings and Dad’s siblings…whether we wanted her to or not. She wanted all of us to be in Heaven with he when our turn came…and how thankful we all are that she was that way. We all think of a legacy as something that just happens easily, but it isn’t it takes work, time, and sacrifice, and most people do it without even knowing that they are building a legacy. That was my mom, exactly!! Today would have been my mom’s 87th birthday…our New Year’s Baby!! Happy birthday in Heaven, Mom!! I know you and Dad are having the time of your lives!! We love and miss you both very much, and we can’t wait to see you again!!
My mom always wanted to hear nothing but happiness in her home. Really, what parent doesn’t? The biggest problem was that she had five daughters who were all very capable of being drama queens, and we didn’t mind a good argument or even a big fight either. That situation made for a house that could, on occasion, be…a little less than happy. I’m sure we pretty much drove her crazy at times. Mom tried a lot of things to restore her preferred mood, like singing “You Are My Sunshine” or doing other goofy things.
Of course, Mom’s cheerfulness wasn’t just during times when we were fighting, and she could get grouchy if she needed too, but then who can’t? The funny thing about some of the things Mom used to do is how totally random they were. Take the Cha-Cha for instance. Most people would never imagine that my mom would do the Cha-Cha…and do it often, but she did. It was all a part of her love for life style. Sometimes, that happiness would just burst out of her, and she had to do something with it. It was like a nervous energy of sorts. You never knew when to expect it. It was totally random, but you had a pretty good idea that this would not be the last time your would see it.
Of course, she did other things with that happy energy, and as kids, and even sometimes as adults, we were a bit embarrassed about some of them. The parade is a prime example. Mom just can’t help but let out a big “Woo Hoo” when the floats go by. She hates for anyone not to be cheered on for their efforts. She stands out in the crowd too, because she always wears her cowboy hat. I used to think that was how everyone knew just who it was doing all the “woo hooing”, but then I realized that lots of people had cowboy hats on…Mom was just the one with the loud voice that happened to be “woo hooing”…and by the way, everyone else was “woo hooing” too, so I seriously doubt that anyone even noticed my mom’s “woo hooing”…except maybe her kids. I used to think, “Oh my gosh!! Do you have to do that?” But these days, it doesn’t bother me. I guess that as we get older, we don’t worry so much about what other people think, and we are finally able to just enjoy the moment. That’s what my mom was always able to do…enjoy the moment. Maybe more of us should be like that.