When disciplining our children, every parent has thought, “I sound just like my mother/father.”

But I do have my mother’s face.

An 8×10 photograph of my mother is on my desk. On her face, she wears a Mona Lisa smile. I keep the photo there as I write—a continual reminder of the parents who let me escape through a loophole in high school graduation requirements. They let me drop advanced math when it became obvious, from the continuing decline in my math grades and straight As in creative writing, that I was destined to pursue the words I loved.

One day, when I was working at my computer, I glanced up at her photo. The reflection from the window projected my face onto the picture glass—my oval shape perfectly matched my mother’s. I was mesmerized by this glimpse of time in fast forward as I previewed my countenance as it would appear thirty years from now.

My eyes gazed calmly from within her sockets, my chin followed the gentle sag of hers, our necks rose as one from our collars, and our wrinkles were a perfect match—hers slightly more pronounced.

We are a society that prizes youth; indeed, we run from anything that hints of wrinkles and gray hair. Yet, the proverb says that gray hair is a crown of splendor (Prov. 16:31)—prized in societies where elders are respected and honored—but it is Lorealed out of sight in affluent America.

Aren’t we, too, worth it?

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