A mother and her child
(J.R. Miller, "The Glory of the Commonplace")
A mother and her child sat side by side. Both love Christ and are following Him.
The teenage girl is sweet and beautiful, a picture of gracefulness. She never has known a struggle, has scarcely ever been called to make a sacrifice, has never found it hard to do right. Her face is unblemished, without a line.
The mother has had many cares, struggles, and fights with evil. She has endured wrongs, has carried burdens, has suffered, has had bitter sorrows, has been misunderstood, has poured out her life in love's sacrifices.
One would say that the child is the more beautiful — the lovelier in her life and appearance. But as the two appear in the eyes of Christ, while both are beautiful, the mother wears the holier loveliness. She has learned in the furnace of suffering. She has grown stronger through her enduring of struggle. The lines of her face, which seem to be blemishes on her fair beauty, are the refining marks of Jesus Christ.
"I have refined you, but not as silver is refined. Rather, I have refined you in the furnace of suffering!" Isaiah 48:10