Redundant or not, today will be a "new" beginning for me. It will be the first New Year's Day for as long as I can remember New Year's Days that I will NOT be helping my mother find her "phrase for the year." Every New Year's Day, she would think of a rhyming phrase and that phrase would be her phrase for the year. Last year it was, "May Jesus be seen in 2015." As it turns out, Jesus WAS seen, face to face by my mother, and five weeks later my father. Of course, I miss them more than I can find the words to express. More than I can find the words. I miss them.
My parents loved God so much and they devoted their lives to encourage others to experience His Love. Mom used to say, "I wish someone would just put a camera in front of my face so that I could tell the world that Jesus loves them." And God granted her wish. I am shocked and amazed at her connection to the movie, "War Room". The Kendrick Brothers put a short clip of Stephen Kendrick's interview with mom on their Facebook page, and MILLIONS UPON MILLIONS of people have viewed it. MILLIONS of people meeting my mother, Molly. I am shocked and even more amazed to be walking through stores now and see the DVD of the movie and know that each one has my mother, Molly Bruno, alive and talking about the love of her life, Jesus. She is a special feature, "Molly Bruno - Modern Day Miss Clara." Who could have guessed what God was doing? Who could have known she would be with Him as the world began to know her?
My mother's phrase for 2015 did not mean she wanted to see Jesus that year. Though of course, when she realized her illness would bring her face-to-face with him in a matter of weeks... she was not reluctant to go. But that phrase meant to my mother that she wanted JESUS to be seen in HER LIFE to those around her. My mother wanted others to see His love and power. My mother wanted others to feel His compassion and mercy. She wanted Jesus to be seen in her life. Jesus.. through her.. to others. And He was. People flocked to her side. Her phone rang constantly with people asking for prayer. People loved her from the moment they met her. People responded to her gentle nudges to examine their relationship with God - much like Miss Clara did. "Where do you go to church?" was her lead in sentence and her way of telling people that it wasn't going to church.. but KNOWING JESUS that would bring LIFE to them. Not religion. LIFE.
As I begin 2016 I am receiving emails from people I don't know. People who have just seen my mom on the DVD and want to know more about her. I am Molly Bruno's daughter... and they want to know more about Molly Bruno. I can hear her voice in my head, "It's not me, Marie, it's JESUS. Tell them about JESUS, not Molly."
"Yes, Mom. I will."
I cannot fill the shoes Molly Bruno wore as she walked her life on earth. She taught me better than to think I can. Or I should. My mother taught me that the only thing that matters is Jesus. "When you have Jesus, you have everything." And her goal should be the goal of anyone who names the Name of Jesus. That we would allow the Holy Spirit to change us in to the image of Jesus. My life should be more than what I talk about. My life should be about who I look like. And so, for me, on this first New Year's Day without Mom, I am thinking that I will borrow her phrase... and say...
"May Jesus be seen in 2016"
And.. of course.. if you want to know MORE about what Molly Bruno taught her daughter, you can get my book about her.. "How To Make A Meatball - Recipes For Living My Mother Taught Me". It IS a shameless plug.. but more than just to sell books. Her lessons to me might bless your life too. http://www.amazon.com/How-Make-Meatball-Recipes-Living/dp/0996457402/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451660237&sr=1-1&keywords=how+to+make+a+meatball+by+marie+armenia