Have you noticed? Now that Halloween is past, it’s beginning to look a lot like . . . Christmas. Here in Tulsa, every store greets you with glittering trees and colored lights. I heard the first carol of the season the other day when my wife and I made a trip to the mall. Retailers, concerned about the economy, are trying even harder than usual to convince customers that they offer the perfect gifts at the perfect prices. Even churches are getting into the act with Christmas choir rehearsals and other Christmas plans. At the Moore home, the Christmas tree shakers are not yet out, but I’m sure they’re coming . . . soon.

As I thought about this season of giving, I also thought about the many moms who would love to receive something you can’t find in any store: a perfect day. Mom, if you could ask God to give you that perfect day, what would it look like? It would probably begin with all your children awakening with smiling little faces and happy hearts. They would make their beds and clean their rooms without being reminded. They would eat their breakfasts without spilling anything or complaining that someone else drank all the hot chocolate. Then, they would offer to clean up the kitchen to give you some extra “alone time.” Your perfect day would continue as the children got ready for school without a single hassle and surprised you by packing your lunch. Later, you would open the container to find a note tucked alongside your favorite sandwich, yogurt and fruit. The note would read:

“Dear Mom, We appreciate you because of the many sacrifices you make for us. Even after days filled with responsibility, you never fail to cook incredible meals with love and thoughtfulness. When you should be resting, you take extra time to fix us your world-class desserts. The many extra things that make our house a home come especially from you. In fact, from early in the morning until late at night, you fill our home with love. We’ve noticed all the times you give up your favorite program to cuddle us in your arms as we watch “Bob the Builder” or “Winnie the Pooh” for what seems like the millionth time, and we’re grateful.

Mom, you probably thought we didn’t know, but we saw you turn away from that new blue dress at Macy’s-the one that made you look like a queen-to buy the new shoes we needed . . . all at the same time. We can’t count the times you have stayed up late to monitor our fevers and sponge our brows with a cool cloth. No matter how busy you are, Mom, you still find time to attend every PTA meeting and help with the class Valentine party. And every day, we hear you praying that we will grow up to be capable, responsible, self-reliant adults who love Jesus with all our hearts.

Mom, you have poured your life into each of us, from wiping our tears as you dropped us off for our first day of kindergarten, to allowing us to drive you on every possible errand so we could get our drivers’ licenses, to helping us buy a prom dress or rent a tux. We cannot think of a single event in our lives that you have not shared. As you eat your lunch today, Mom, we want you to know that your good qualities will live on in each of us. As your children, we are your legacy, and we thank God every day that we have the best mom in the world. Signed with much love from . . . all of us.”

That sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? Still, most moms-and even dads-know that we will never have that perfect day until we reach Heaven. Most of our lives run more like a car with wobbly wheels. We finally get one wheel into place and another comes off. Eventually, we become content to have only three wheels on the vehicle at the same time.

Lives with wobbly wheels are the reason moms and dads need . . . Jesus. In fact, He has placed a special verse in the Bible just for parents: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

Until He comes, rest in the peace that He gives, and He will make it . . . a perfect day.