Christian Living

Spiritual Life

God Answers Mom's Prayers

Read this excerpt from Allison's book, "God Answers Mom's Prayers" (March, 2005).

God constantly and wonderfully amazes me. It seems the more I know of Him, the more I want to know, and just when I think I can predict what He is going to do next, wham, He surprises me yet again. His latest surprise was the gift He gave me on my 50th birthday.

A few days before my birthday, I jokingly asked God for a birthday present. I asked to be a teen-ager again. As soon as I had spoken the prayer, a smile crept to my face. Even though I know God is all-powerful, I could not fathom how even He could make me a teenager again. I dismissed the prayer in my mind, got up and went about my day, not once considering the possibility that God would answer this particular request.

Later that day, I received a frantic phone call from Heather, one of the teenagers in our church youth group. For some reason, this young lady has taken to me and assumes that I am her ally in the never-ending stream of circumstances she finds herself.

Her most recent crisis involved an argument with her mother and being grounded “for the rest of my life!” and not being able to talk on the phone with her boyfriend. I listened patiently as she told her woeful story, hoping she would release some pressure and gain composure. Instead, she talked herself into a deeper frenzy and declared, “I hate my mom! I hope she never speaks to me again!”

As a mom and a Christian, I felt it was my duty to say something. I decided to tell a story from my own teenage years and one of the trials and tribulations I went through with my own mom.

Like most moms she had her very own list of finely tuned methods for harassing children. To awaken us each morning, instead of setting an alarm or dousing us with cold water, she would come into our rooms, happy and cheerful, and in a sing-song voice that would put Julie Andrews to shame, sing, “Up, Up, Up! It’s time to get up!” I don’t remember exactly when this abuse began, but it became intolerable at about age fifteen. Every morning, I would put the pillow over my head in an attempt to drown the words, but she continued her morning ritual until I could take it no longer.

When I finally got married and moved from my parent’s home, I was thrilled that I would finally be free of what became known as “The Get Up Song.” I married an Army man and moved away, but on the morning of my 21st birthday, the phone rang and on the other end was a cheerful voice singing, “Up, Up, Up! It’s time to get up!” Not even the United States military could stop her!

I lived with this annoyance every year of my life until two years ago. On the morning of my forty-eighth birthday, the phone call from my mom came later than normal. I was beginning to wonder if perhaps she had forgotten my birthday, but finally the call came and a tired, faint voice whispered “The Get Up Song.” I listened as tears streamed down my face. When she finished the song, I said, “Mom, can you sing it for me once more?” As she struggled through the melody one more time, I tried for all that was within me to capture and memorize the sound of the words I somehow felt would never pass her lips again.

“Heather,” I said, “I am about to turn 50 in a few days. You can’t imagine what it would mean to me to have the phone ring and hear those annoying horrible words spoken again. I’d give anything to have my mom back.”

She seemed to gain some insight from my story and promised to try to work things out with her mom. I ended the conversation thinking this was the last I would hear on the subject.

Early on the morning of my fiftieth birthday, the phone rang. I was startled, thinking someone had been in accident, and quickly picked up the receiver. On the other end, a 16 year old voice sang, “Up, Up, Up! It’s time to get up! Sweet, precious Heather. For one moment, I was a kid again, 15 years old, without a care in the world except an annoying mother who sang silly songs.

Once again, the Lord had performed a miracle. Once again, He had come through for me, making me a teenager again, even for a brief moment in time. As I hung up the phone, I looked toward heaven and said, “Thank you Lord for the wonderful birthday present, thank you for the memory of my mom, and thank you for sending me a teenager to help me feel like one again.”

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