Celebrating My Mom on her 89th Birthday !!

June 10th  marked the 89th birthday of  Helen Eugenia Brownlee Waters, born June 10, 1923 !!!  I’m her youngest daughter , coming after 1 older daughter and 5 energetic boys — 7 children in all !  I cannot even begin to tell you how much I love this woman and how very  thankful I am that God has allowed her to live this long for me to enjoy her presence.  When she feels somewhat weak and feeble and begins to ask  why God has left her here on this earth this long, I always tell her…”It’s because your “baby girl” still needs you! ” …and I really, really mean that.

We never stop needing our moms …never !  

My Mom has walked with me through not only the obvious early years, but the  crazy teenage years , when boys were WAY more important than mom was — and getting my adult badge in college and realizing mom wasn’t so bad after all–and then getting married and having 4 children of my own …this would be the point when I realized that my mom was actually brilliant and I couldn’t live without her !!

She has experienced an awful lot in these 89 years …probably more than I’ll ever know — things like World War II , the Great Depression, the rise and fall of many leaders and dictators and world powers,  civil rights issues, man walking on the moon,  technological advances — to name a few.  But I can tell you one thing for sure, if asked what was the most important event in her 89 years of life, she would tell you — hands down — accepting Jesus Christ into her life …walking with Him every day and enjoying His presence …knowing Him in a real and intimate way.  This special relationship with Jesus began in her early years of life and mushroomed into something of a deep, abiding kind of love over the years.

She taught me this– to love above  all else — my Jesus…my Savior !

As a young woman in her early years of business college, she met and fell in love with a man named John Waters.  Together they really changed the world !  Together they loved God with all their hearts , they loved each other faithfully and they loved people of all varieties — Oh…they really loved people, and they shared the love of God to all they came in contact with.

My Mom taught me well how to love my husband … being faithful to the end.

My Dad — John Waters
High School picture around 1941

My Mom in 1941

Mom & Dad in 1943
Wedding Picture

My Mom would go on to do something else very amazing (in my humble opinion !)… give birth to 7 children spanning the years from 1944-1961.  That’s some kind of hero in my book !!!  And besides her deep love for God and her love and devotion to my Dad … Mom loved her kids …and I mean LOVED her kids.  

David, Linda , me, Johnny
Phil, Paul, Danny
Early 1960’s(aren’t we so cute !!!)

My Mom taught me to LOVE  my  family...to be loyal to your family … to fight for your family… to pray earnestly for your family …to nurture and care for your family … to teach your family about Jesus and His Word …to worship God with others  regularly…to be kind and respectful to each other … to call each other often … to say “I love you” often … to greet each other with a “morning hug” … to serve each other… to sometime put yourself last  so others can have what they need  … to talk about everything together and pray about everything –and I mean everything !!!

My Mom with all 7 of her children – along with their spouses
Linda & Dennis Carter, John & Jackie, David & Kay, Danny & Gail, Paul & Mary Jane, Phil & Lenna Waters, and Roger & Joy Martin

Mom with her oldest son, Johnny at her birthday a few years ago

I need to tell you this … in her love for her husband and her children, their spouses, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren…this woman prays for all of us — by name — on a regular basis , if not daily !  When cleaning out someone house, you find what really mattered to them and this house of 45 years was full of  notebooks, slips of paper and Bibles with words of God’s truth and words to pray for those she loved.

Photo of Mom by her grandson
Andrew Waters

The love of the Bible — God’s precious words — is her treasure…her delight … her lifeline !  In her room she has not 1, not 2 , but 3 Bibles lying open around the room.  She’s a snacker — a grazer of sorts.  When we were younger and the days of  “sitting for long time at the feet of Jesus” weren’t as much of an option, she would open her Bible on the dining room table in the morning and walk by and “feed on the Word” throughout the day.  Sometime I think that method might just be more on-going fuel for the day than the big “fill up” — shooting off like a rocket into the busyness of the day and spilling it all out in a matter of minutes !  She would take a slow infusion of the life-giving Word of God … a steady drip to sustain her own life.

One of Mom’s Bibles
Tucked in her Bible were notes she wrote to her own mom wishing her a happy birthday in heaven and telling her how much she missed her !

Her words are all intertwined with God’s words now… her conversation is full of Word- flavor.  At the end of each conversation she and I have on the phone, she ends it with,

 “Don’t ever forget …I love you very much and …

The Lord bless thee, and keep thee:

The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:

Numbers 6:24-25 (KJV)

…and mama loves you !!”

And I am loved…oh so loved … and I am blessed…blessed  beyond measure !!

I love you so much Mom !  Happy Birthday!!

Oh and don’t ever forget… your baby girl still needs you !

9 thoughts on “Celebrating My Mom on her 89th Birthday !!

  1. I saw your link on Ann’s “aholyexperience”… glad to read about your mom. She sounds like such a precious lady who has lived her life well for Jesus. My mom is in heaven now and I miss her wisdom and prayers. I recognized you as having gone to TTU. You were one of the first people I meton campus in the dining hall (after being ushered in like cattle!). You were kind to this freshman and I wanted you to know I appreciated your that you seemed genuinely interested in people. Thank you for your kindness to me at that time. I enjoy reading Ann’s blog and counted up to 1000 last year although this year have just not kept up with it as much. I should jump in again!


  2. Oh Susan… thank you so much for your encouraging words to me ! What stories we could write from those TTU days, huh !!?? 🙂 It’s great reconnecting with you and funny how “aholyexperience” did that for us . Well, you made my day today so I think counting YOU as one of the 1000 is a perfect thing to do ! Your words meant so much ! … thanks !


  3. conts) joy since she was a small child & her mothe & Father Pastored the chruch we were members of.that means i had the privilege of knowing her Mother well (that is really special).we went on visitation for our chruch many times together & i was able to ask her questions about mant subjects (raiseing children was on the top of the list as she had 7)I learned much from her & our love of the bible helped us to bond in a special way.the world is a better place b/c of her & Pastor John & 7 children.love them all


  4. joy , this is one of my favorite blogs & the pics means so much.i always thought of u children as family & of course your parents.i can see your Father”s smile this morning & hear your Mother”s saying (daddy is it time to go home).we had the privilege of taking them home for ice cream & fellowship after chruch at nite.what a joy that was.I look forward tothat day when i can see your Father”s smile again & thank them both for all they taught me.love~ phyllis kramm


  5. Pingback: A Tribute to Mama — A Life Well Lived | a life-giving moment

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