The four of us sat together across the table from each other: Linus and I on one side and Stephanie and Leslie on the other. Our two daughters took us to dinner at a lovely restaurant to celebrate Mother’s Day. During the meal, we reminisced, shared bites of each other’s entrees, and thoroughly enjoyed our time together.
Wonderfully, our two daughters are not only sisters; they are friends. Sisters aren’t always friends—sometimes they are combatants. (I am sure that sons can be the same, but since we only had one, we don’t really know for sure—but we do know about daughters.) In the course of the evening we especially laughed as we remembered one battle Stephanie and Leslie had growing up. It was a public one, and I am happy to say one where I wasn’t present.
While church planting in France, we planned a flight for Steph and Les to fly back to the US. They were eager to see family and friends. They chatted excitedly about their trip, what clothes to pack, where they would stay, and which friends they would see. They planned their trip in detail, even covering who would sit by the window seat on the plane: they would take turns.
Finally, the day arrived to begin their journey. I was comfortable sending them on an international flight without us, as I knew they would watch out for each other, after all, they were 13 and 14 years of age. We drove them to the airport, helped them check in, kissed them goodbye, and waved as they disappeared beyond passport control. We knew they would have a wonderful trip and come back with great memories to share. After seeing them off, we returned to our home in France. My heart was calm as I prayed for their safety and God’s protection over them. I pictured them happily sitting together—two loving sisters with a lovely time ahead of them.
Little did I know that as my two darling daughters boarded the plane they began fighting with each other over who would sit in the window seat first—they forgot that one detail in their planning. It wasn’t a quiet little disagreement. They began wrestling with each other and tumbled into the isle yelling and scratching. It was some years later before they told Linus and me the real story of this idyllic journey to their home country. We laughed over our Mother’s Day dinner to visualize once again what the other people on the plane thought about these two loving sisters yelling and wrestling in the isles. I just hope that somehow they didn’t mention to anyone that they were two missionary kids. As the years have gone by our two combatants have become great friends…not only with each other but also with us. I can’t think of a better Mother’s Day gift.