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  • Kay Elliot

Echoes of a godly mother

CLINTON TOWNSHIP – My momma was raised in rural Georgia in a sharecropper’s family who picked cotton. This was at the end of the Great Depression. They were poor and life was hard with seven kids plus an alcoholic father who disappeared for weeks after payday. My momma and her sister began attending church. They accepted Jesus and were baptized. Momma made a commitment to have a Christ-centered and alcohol-free home.  “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

As we grew up, our lives were school and church. The church was the center of our lives. Sunday morning, Sunday evening and Wednesday night. God was not just at church; He was in our home. In fact, I learned to read by reading the Bible. Momma modeled reading her Bible daily and kneeling by her bed every night to pray for those on her list. God was real to her, and she spoke of how much He had blessed her. 

Momma modeled ministry, although at the time, I did not know what it was called. Momma would pick up elderly ladies for church. I would sit in the back seat between them and often thought, “We could get to church faster if we did not have to make all of these stops.” I started listening to these ladies and learned their stories of hardships and understood why she drove them. I have picked up many for church in the same way. At WMU meetings, I really loved the missionary stories and was captivated by them. I realized that Momma was like a missionary, telling others in our world about Jesus. That impacted my life.

Even as a Christian, her life had struggles and the loss of loved ones. The biggest one was losing her husband to a sudden heart attack. At age 52, she was a widow. She wrote in a journal about losing Daddy. She repeatedly wrote that even in the midst of sorrow, God was giving her peace, strength, and the help she needed to carry on. “My God will supply all your needs, according to His mercies in heaven.”

Momma had a deep relationship with God, like a hotline it seemed. I spent a summer in Michigan helping a church. After returning home, God spoke to me about moving to Michigan as a long-term missionary. I was hesitant to tell momma since it was far away. I finally got the courage to say that I needed to tell her something. She said, “I guess you are going to tell me that you are packing up and moving there,” I replied, “In a nutshell, but how did you know?”

She said, “God already told me.” Wow! She sent me a note with this Scripture: “I have no greater joy than my children walk in truth,” (3 John 1:4).  She added, “Kay, I am so thankful that you walk in truth.” That note is a treasure to me!

She was a prayer warrior and prayed down on her knees until kneeling was too difficult. In her later years, dementia began to take over. She still could quote Bible verses and parts of hymns near the end. Many trivial things left her mind, but God did not.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths,” (Proverbs 3:5-6). Momma lived it. I have videos of her quoting it perfectly. I would ask her “How did that work?” Her answer, “If you trust in Him.  He really will direct your life.” 


Momma’s faithfulness to God will echo into future generations because of her determination at a young age to commit to do things in her life and home that pleased God, and she never wavered. I have been greatly blessed by having a godly mother. Thank you, Lord, for her.



Kay is a Georgia girl who moved to Michigan in 1991 as a volunteer missionary. She is married to Steve Elliott. Steve is the Pastor of Faith Outreach Fellowship in Clinton Township where they serve together. Kay is also a First-Grade teacher and has been teaching 39 years. She has a heart for children and lady’s ministry as well. 


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