Have you ever heard of “Ask a Mom”?
It’s a fantastic service moms in our church offer to students at UCCS. They literally stand next to a table of free cookies and bandaids with shirts on that say “Keep Calm And Ask A Mom.” They offer free hugs, advice and of course, those cookies!
When Pam Eschner asked me if I would be willing to help out, the first thing I thought of was my own daughter, Clara, who is navigating her first year at college all the way in Oklahoma, and I knew I had to do it.
I was trusting God with the life of my daughter, that He would surround her with people who would be His hands and feet to her when I couldn’t be, and now I had the opportunity to be exactly what I was praying for to someone else.
So, I put on the bright red “Keep Calm And Ask A Mom” t-shirt and stood next to the table of cookies. I’ve gotta admit it felt a little weird at first yelling out “Free Cookies! Free Hugs! From Moms!”
But once you had a student look in your eyes, second guess whether they should come over or not, then push through their fear and not only receive a hug, but return it with a big bear hug you know you’re doing the right thing.
Sure, some people avoided our offers, I don’t blame them because how often in life do we get offered pure love for free? But others – a lot more than you may imagine – were so needing a hug, a cookie, a word of encouragement and even a sprinkle of love life advice thrown in.
My favorite responses from the students were “What??? This is the BEST thing ever! Can I go grab my roommate?” Or “You guys were my favorite part of last semester. Thanks for continuing to come back!”
But the ones that really cut me to my core, the ones that affirmed my hope that I was making a real difference, was the young man who shared that he had just failed a math test and was really discouraged.
Or the two gals that asked me for advice if the guy they liked was really into them.
Or the final gal who walked up, got a hug from me, looked me in the eyes and through tears said, “I’m just really having a hard day.” I can still see her brown eyes flooded with emotion.
And I thought again of my Clara, states away walking through life the first time without a mom… without me… being there for a hug at any moment.
And I felt blessed.
Blessed to be the hands and feet of another mom’s prayers for their brown eyed girl all the way in Colorado Springs.
Written by Jessica Thompson