The Highest Calling


The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. One of the highest callings to pursue this end is to mother. In fact, despite the horrific state of our world and the disrespect motherhood gets, I consider it the very highest calling on my life.

Yesterday one of the most important mothers in my life met her Savior. Jill Jackson not only gave my husband life, she raised him in the way that he should go. If you know Will, you know what I mean. I often talk here on the blog about how much I love my man, but I do not much talk about how accomplished he is, or how his work ethic is unparalleled. His mom raised him to believe the sky was limit and to work hard. She loved and cheered on her son so very very well.

This Mother’s Day we knew Jill might not have long to live. Both her sons, daughters-in-law, and seven grandchildren encircled her in bed. She laughed at our stories — she’s been delighting over my endless tales for 29 years. I told her about how Will and I were supposed to soon do a cooking class as a fundraiser and she cracked up about how funny that concept was. Will and I in the kitchen for charity? Surely there must be some mistake. Will is a faithful dishwasher but does not cook…at all.

Yesterday as Will was driving to see his mother before she passed (by God’s grace he did make it in time), I was chatting with an old friend, who happens to be black. I first met her twenty years ago in Bible study and she lives in the DC area. I wanted to interview her for a blog post, but even though we talked for over an hour, I feel like we barely scratched the surface of today’s issues. But one thing she did say applies to whatever you are facing. From the death of a loved one, illness, financial insecurity or the deep wounds of injustice, her words apply: “I can’t even begin to wonder what the Lord is doing. All I know is I am thankful He is in control.”

I too am thankful He is in control. I am thankful that, for the follower of Christ, to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. I am thankful that my husband had such a wonderful mother, and I hope I never lose sight of what a high high calling it is to raise my own sons.

Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her…Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.

Proverbs 31:28, 30

With Love,


P.S. Some of my favorite women are not mothers and yet I still see this call admirably lived out in their lives. I also feel like part of my calling is broader than raising my own sons. I love all of my nieces and nephews, my sons’ friends, and pretty much any child I come in contact with. One hour each week that I know I am exactly where I am supposed to be is when I teach second grade Sunday school. I miss those kids immensely. Anyway, just want to be clear that although there’s not a good word for “God-given, uniquely female intuition/compassion/wisdom” I believe using it to encourage one another is the role of every woman.

6 thoughts on “The Highest Calling

  1. Paige says:

    Thank you so much for your words and the reminder of the high call on our lives! Love you praying now for your sweet family

  2. I love reading this and couldn’t agree more with the calling we have! It is so hard to see a parent pass away. I’m thankful Will was able to see her, and I will pray for him & his family.

  3. Rosemarie Newswanger Havenga says:

    I have not been part of the family for years, but know that Aunt Jill was a very strong loving woman who had a very strong faith, and she left an indelible mark on my life. Please extend my heart felt sympathies to Uncle Bill, Will and Tommy, she is with Mom mom Wike in heaven ❤️

  4. Joanne G Caraway says:

    Dear Kristie – I have missed being one of your many friends. I am , or was – one of Jill’s LandO’ Lakes friends. Bill called me about her death. Spoke with her about six weeks ago; she sounded so upbeat, and never mentioned a word of what was truly going on with her. Your Tribute to her was lovely. Our son Todd was one of Will’s friends; he wanted your current mailing address – if you don’t mind sharing. Please hug your Will & Sons for me. And please add me back onto your fried list. Durn FB has me listed at 3 sites: Joanne, Joanne G., and Joanne Griffin Caraway. I love finding your Blog again💕Ever, Joanne G Caraway (jo)

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