Well, I've been in torment for the last 3o something hours trying to write an essay for the purposes of applying to Hope. Finally, after three different essays and the beginnings of several others, I'm satisfied. I want to share this with all of you, because I know Mom might not let me otherwise.
Many different people and events have influenced my short life to varying degrees for the better or for worse. Pastors, friends, teacher, 4H leaders, and relatives have come and gone, leaving behind their mark on my personality and character. But my parents remain; a solid rock creating an eddy in the rushing torrents of time. Of all the numerous persons God has used to shape my life, my Mother has exerted the greatest influence by not only nurturing my body and behavior, but by honing the knife of my mind also. Her character and the ways in which she taught me spiritually and academically have formed a large part of who I am.
That the most important thing in the world to [Name.] is Christ and his cross I saw clearly by the way in which she cared for Dad and us, her children. Considering our education and growth to be one of her biggest callings, Mom quit her medical practice of 15 years when I was in fourth grade and came home to home school me and my siblings. Firmly believing God’s Word to be the most necessary foundation of life, she strove to ingrain Holy Scripture not only into my mind and memory, but also into my behavior. In addition, Mom held academic excellence in high regard and challenged my mind with new material as quickly as I could master it. Her verbal teaching was not unsupported either, for she also taught by example. As I look for role models of the Christian woman, I repeatedly find myself returning to the image set by my mother.
From the beginning of my life Mom has fostered my spiritual growth. As an infant, my parents brought me to Holy Baptism and faithfully took me to church services to hear the preaching of God’s Word. Eager for my siblings and me to expand our comprehension of God’s love for us, Mom made Scripture reading, devotions and prayer part of our school routine. These practices have stuck with me as personal daily elements, even though I am not often present to participate with the family. Mom exemplified the loving discipline of God. When I was disobedient I knew I could expect swift and effective retribution, but the punishment was always followed by the restoration of forgiveness. From my Mother I learned how to forgive and how to repair relationships with my siblings. She trained us to honor authority and how to respectfully dissent from an elder’s opinion. Always willing to listen, she provided a comforting shoulder to weep on and sound biblical advice after tears were spent.
Only a step lower in the hierarchy of importance to my Mother was academic schooling. She was determined to equip all us children with the knowledge necessary not only to succeed in a career but to provide for ourselves no matter what situation the Lord might call us to. Mom always told us that her primary goal was to teach us how to learn. Forcing me to challenge myself, Mom refused to let me procrastinate, dally or wander in my class work. If I failed to achieve a high enough score on her own or standardized tests, I would be obliged to redo the work . More than that, she instilled in me a desire to acquire knowledge and understand the subjects I was studying. Because of Mother’s persistence and training, my education progressed as fast as I could absorb the material. She fostered my pursuit of interests, buying me dozens of history books and helping me to manage my small dairy goat her. Without her formative influence, I would not likely have achieved such mastery of the course material in my community college classes or [academic distinctions].
My mother’s Christian character, her spiritual guidance, and the academic training she provided have shaped me into who I am. Mom’s love for Christ, overflowing to Dad and her children provide me with and excellent role model that I hope to emulate. Her caring, faithful, spiritual guidance took me through many rough times and instilled in me a love of God’s Word. Because of my mother’s persistent, stimulating academic regime, I have learned how to learn and by God’s grace am ready to face the rigors of a college education. Mom’s influence, especially that of her faith will last far beyond the time I spend under her authority.