A woman had quit work to stay at home and take care of her new baby daughter. Countless hours of peek-a-boo and other games took their toll. One evening she smacked her bare toes on the corner of a dresser and grabbing her foot, sank to the floor. Her husband rushed to her side and asked where it hurt. She looked at her husband through tear-filled eyes and managed to moan, “It’s the piggy that ate the roast beef…”
Another harried mother had three very active boys. One summer evening she was playing cops and robbers in the back yard after dinner. One of the boys “shot” his mother and yelled, “Bang! You’re dead.” She slumped to the ground. When she didn’t get up right away, a neighbor ran over to see if she had been hurt by her fall. When the neighbor bent over, the overworked mother opened one eye and said, “Shhh, don’t give me away. It’s the only chance I’ve had to rest all day.”
As a man, and as a student of life, I have to admit that you will never hear me say that it is easy being a mother. Just the giving birth part alone wears me out thinking about it. At the birth of every one of my children, I whispered a little prayer of thanks that God had me be born a man. And during those early days of new life, the pressure is definitely more on the wife than it ever is on the husband.
From personal experience, our babies cried for “Mommy” much more than I ever heard “Daddy” in those crucial days of new beginnings. And to this day, while I may be good to my children for providing their daily needs and offering a hug, encouragement, a good time, a laugh or two, a lesson and even an adventure along the way -when my kids need something done quickly and they seek undivided attention, they seek their Mother. I have watched my wife Terri try to move heaven and earth to attempt to meet their needs.
And I admire it, more than I envy it for there is a bond that women have with children that we men will never have. Children literally “house” themselves and develop in a mother’s womb. I can only imagine what that experience is all about.
I do believe that this unique bond that a woman has with her child makes it more difficult for her to cut the ties with them when it comes time for the child to grow up. I pray very hard that when the season comes for the little one who longs to fly to do just that – Mama will let them go.
The cries for independence are critical days in the life of a child and what parents do with those cries determine greatly whether that child will ever reach their potential as an adult. It may be cute to be “mommy’s boy” at the age of two, but not so cute at 42.
And this is where I believe that at the time of the year we celebrate Mother’s Day, we can learn much from a woman I have learned to admire more as each year goes by and that is Mary – the human mother of our Lord Jesus.
Mary is a remarkable woman. She was a wonderful model of a mother who was there for her son and while she always seems to be standing by her son, she never stands in the way of her son and doesn’t prevent him from becoming the person that God had called him to be. It could not have been easy being the mother of Jesus. Life was no picnic for the wife of Joseph, the carpenter from Nazareth. First, they were poor in material things. They were not an affluent family. And if God didn’t put Jesus in a “we’ve got it made in the shade” lifestyle, don’t you think that this would rule out any thought that being financially set for life is God’s ultimate blessing in life? It isn’t you know. The blessing is found more in the family than in the finances.
We learn in the life of Mary that she would never have had anything to hold on to if she first did not learn how to let go. She had to let go of her own plans and agenda. Remember, she was only a child herself when the angel came and invited her to become the mother of a King.
She had to let go of her husband Joseph. After Jesus’ 12th birthday, we never hear of Joseph again. Have you ever thought of Mary as a single mom? After Joseph died, she was a single mom with a house full of children. How did she do it? She never remarried. How did she support them all?
She trusted with her life the true Father of her son and the real Lover of her soul. And then came the day when she had to let go of her son Jesus and let him go in the most tragic of ways. She would watch her oldest son be brutally beaten for something he did not do and be unmercifully crucified upon the cross. Most of the men deserted him but not his mother. Mary stands by him to the end.
And if Mary would have anything to hold on to, she had to let go; but letting go doesn’t happen when your child turns 18. Mary lets go of her heart before she even has a life, before she is given a husband, before she has a son and because Mary let go of her hand to the heart of God, she became the woman she was born to be – born to be blessed and because of her, this world would never be the same again. And by letting herself go to God, she got a glimpse of what was to come and because she was asked to let go again and again – she was able to let go of Jesus and allow him to become what he was born to be – and because of that- we would never be the same again. Letting go is the key to opening the door to the treasure box of God.
So I wish a “Happy Mother’s Day,” to all those women who have been given the awesome privilege and daunting task of holding on and letting go. And when the time comes when you must let that little one you carried within – to go out and live the life they were designed to live – may you know that the hand of God never lets go of you.
And Mary gave just that kind of gift to Jesus. She said to him, “Son, even though your life speaks a language that is foreign to my head, because I gave God my heart, I love you enough to let you go because I want you to become the man that God has called you to be.” Thanks Mary for letting go of Jesus. And I want to say thank you to all the mothers who are reading this article today who have ever had to do the very same thing. Thank you for letting go of the sons and daughters that we should be holding but never holding back.
And ladies, please grab on tightly to the Lord who will never let you down – or let you go. May His peace give you what you need as you continue doing what I, as a man, could never fully understand- – and that is- being a mother. God bless you from the bottom of my soul.
Pastor Rudy invites you to worship this Mother’s Day weekend at The Lighthouse Church with celebration services on Saturday Night at 6 p.m. held at the Annex, 1248 Rt. 9 and Sunday Mornings at 9 and 10:30 a.m. at Elementary School No. 2 in Court House.
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