Published on 5/6/2022
In Your Anger Do Not Sin
The day before I left Hong Kong in August 1973, my Mommy insisted on personally ironing my every shirt. I was packing when I suddenly heard her yelled, "Oh, No!"
Rushing out of the room, seeing the burn marks on the pointed collar of my yellow blouse, I couldn't help but shout, "Mommy! Why did you do that?"
But I felt bad as soon as the words came out. I hurriedly fled the scene and ran back to the room to hide my frustration and disappointment.
It seemed that my head was about to explode. I was mad at losing my favorite top. That silk blouse had a pointed collar, a bright yellow background, and a cute pattern of little white elephants. Not only did it look good in my eyes, but it was often envied by my classmates and friends. Now that one collar was burned, how could I wear it again?
On the other hand, Mommy's pale face reminded me of her sacrificial love. How could I lose temper at Mommy before leaving to study in the United States? The blouse was ruined, and I broke her heart. Why did I do that? The more I thought about it, the more guilty I felt. Tears were streaming down my face.
Just when I was frustrated and dazed, Mommy showed up and said in a gentle voice, "Your blouse is good to go again. Look!" She held up the blouse with a smile. After her skillful repair, the pointed collars on both sides became round collars and the blouse looked cuter than before. Through my tears I smiled again.
We hugged goodbye the next day. I didn't expect it to be a farewell, but I never saw Mommy again. Two years later, her heart suddenly stopped and she died in Hong Kong at the age of forty-eight.
At that time, I was still a college student who recently got married after only 3 months of dating. (My husband and his family had immigrated from Taiwan a few years back.) I never had the chance to fulfill my childhood dream of buying a big house for Mommy and taking her around the world, and my biggest regret is that she never saw my husband, son, and grandkids.
However, I will never forget her selfless and gracious love. Her understanding, acceptance and forgiveness had always encouraged and motivated me. Thank God for my Mommy! Years later, I got to know the Lord Jesus and experienced the great love of my Heavenly Father. I began to learn the importance of being responsible for my own thoughts, feelings, words and deeds. I want to love people around me, especially those closest to me, while I still have time.
“In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold." (Ephesians 4:26-27)
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Happy Mothers' Day!
Winnis Chiang, LMFT and founder of ParentingABC.com, is passionate about helping Mandarin- and Cantonese-speaking parents to get along with, enjoy, and positively influence their American born children.