Mama Always Said…

I’d like you to meet my Mama.

Her name is Cindy. She is feisty and sarcastic and ENTIRELY inappropriate. She makes a decadent chocolate cake that will change your whole entire life, and when I was little she religiously danced to Richard Simmons’ Sweatin’ to the Oldies work out video every. single. morning. [On account of the cake.] To this day, every time I hear “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to”, I have PTSD flashbacks of mint-green striped spandex and coordinating scrunchies.

My Mama also happens to be the director of women’s discipleship at The Summit Church, a minor miracle given the fact that she is probably the least-holy person that I know. She tells it like it is, and this talk that she gave is no exception. She’s my best friend and my first phone call should I ever need to dispose of a body with no questions asked, and if she died tomorrow I would inscribe one thing on her headstone:

God only gives good gifts.

It’s been her mantra since I was tiny. To be perfectly honest, for a long time I thought it was a cliche; something to be needlepointed onto tacky decorative pillows or slapped onto bumper stickers. That all changed the day that her little brother died. I was in the 8th grade, and in the face of incredible pain, Cindy Peterson still believed to her core that God was incapable of being anything but good to her. Spending my life watching her believe–really believe that–taught me to believe it, too.

If you have ever experienced grief or questioned the goodness of God, this video is worth your time.

And if you’d like to hear about the time that she and I belted “Gold Digger” to Ian until 3:00 in the morning in a dark ICU, well, that’s in there too.


Filed under Family, Grief, Hope, Ian

6 responses to “Mama Always Said…

  1. I stumbled across your blog recently and am so glad I did. I lost my brother my freshman year of college, in 2001, and your words strike such a familiar cord with me, even all of these years later. I am excited to hear what your mom has to say, I definitely think this world could use a whole lot more “less holy” Christians!

    • Laura, I’m so sorry that you lost your brother. That’s so painful. I’m with you–I think the world could DEFINITELY use more people like my Mom! ;) I hope you enjoy listening to her.

  2. Kristin

    Kanye and Cindy go together like peanut butter and jelly.

  3. Kasia B

    Ashley, thank you so much for sharing this. It is a powerful reminder to walk by faith through the terrible days of grief in this life. No one is immune. Pain is no stranger as we go through life. I am so sorry you have to experience it at such a young age. But you have a model in your parents of how to join the fellowship of the broken. And we all long for the healing of heaven. Please thank your mom for me. I cried and gave thanks today…

  4. oh my word you and your momma just make me cry… in the best way possible.

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