First here's what I mean by epiphany...I got this from the Merriam Webster online dictionary:
3 a (1) : a usually sudden manifestation or perception of the essential nature or meaning of something (2) : an intuitive grasp of reality through something (as an event) usually simple and striking (3) : an illuminating discovery, realization, or disclosure b : a revealing scene or moment
Now to explain what was revealed to me back in 1994...
When you have a child the general thought is that you are given a gift...a child is a gift from God. But when I was pregnant with my first child someone shared her version of this thought. She told me that she believes that God doesn't GIVE you your child. He sends His child THROUGH you and it's your job to prepare your child to make his or her way back to God. I loved that she shared this thought with me and I have never forgotten it.
When I had my first child I was...as expected...blown away with joy. But along with the overwhelming joy was overwhelming fear. I was terrified...an emotional wreck. I would hold my child and sob. I was scared to death at the depth of my responsibility and it was completely overwhelming. I was convinced that I was going to screw him up in the worst way!! I would think, "How am I ever going to know what to do???"
Thankfully time worked it's magic and I quickly figured things out. Days turned into weeks and soon I realized that my love for my new baby boy was a love like I had never known. I was utterly amazed at how deep and magnificent my love was.
Then one day I realized something else...I call this my first epiphany of motherhood. I remember the moment well. I was contemplating the amazing new life in my hands and, like a lightening bolt, it hit me...I thought, "Oh my God! This is how much my parents love me!!" I was stunned at the clarity of that moment...they love me as much as I love him!!
Then a few seconds later I had an even more unbelievable realization...I thought, "Oh my God!! Oh my God!! Oh my God!! This is how much God loves me!!" To say I was blown away by this epiphany is putting it lightly! I can't even put into words how clear everything became. I've never forgotten that moment!
Becoming a mother has provided me with a deep sense of peace. I know how much I love my children and I can't help but believe that God has the same deep love for me. I'm not perfect and never will be, but as long as I try to be the best person I can be then that's okay. When my kids make mistakes I forgive them, right? I still love them. I forgive their errors and move on. Well, I believe that God does the same for me. I have moments where I'm harsh, judgemental or hurtful...we all do. We're human...we can't help it. But hopefully sooner or later I will realize that I have done wrong...I probably hurt someone. At the moment when I feel sorry for what I've done then I believe God forgives me.
We need to begin each day knowing that mistakes will be made...we're human and we will never be perfect. As long as we try to be the best we can be...I believe that's all God wants from each and every one of us.