It wasn’t until I became a mom, that the reference to Mary at the Nativity scene really stood out to me.
Motherhood changes our lives forever. It changes our perspective about relationships, money, food, homes, cars and so much more. It greatly affects how we think about God.
From the moment we find out we are expecting, our thinking begins to be transformed. No longer does our world revolve around us, but around this tiny little one that is growing inside of us.
Adoption is no different. Our awareness of and love for this child that will be placed in our arms grows exponentially. It’s hard to think about anything else because it’s so all consuming.
Unlike us, Mary was acutely aware of who she was giving birth to and what his purpose would be. I can’t imagine expecting, giving birth to and raising a child I KNEW would be crucified. Yet Mary seems to be able to be fully engaged in that moment after Jesus’ birth.
Luke 2:19 (NIV) says:
“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.”
What exactly was Mary treasuring up and pondering? No one can really say for sure, but as a mom who has had 8 children, my guess would be that the flood of God given, love filled hormones that happen as our baby is placed in our arms was an important part of that picture. But also, I’m guessing, the realization that she had just given birth to the Savior of the world and the significance of that was rolling over her like waves of the sea. God with skin on, cradled in her arms. She could actually see him, she could kiss him, she could hold him close to her heart.
The angels sang, the shepherds came to see for themselves, then spread the word about what they had just witnessed and Mary…she “kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often.” (NLT)
Long awaited prophecies were being fulfilled. THE Redeemer had finally arrived into this world, on one hand announced with great rejoicing by the few who were given the opportunity to see, and on the other hand hardly noticed by those who weren’t…which was most of the world.
The Jews had anticipated that this Messiah would arrive as royalty…very seen, very public and very known. Nothing could be further from the truth.
This Jesus that held the power of redemption chose to come to this earth essentially unnoticed and yet he held the keys that would finally bring God and man together. The gap that had been created by Adam and Eve’s sin was about to be annihilated. By the power of his blood, we would be set FREE, not just in the life to come, but the one we are living right now. Our shame, nailed to the tree. His innocence crucified because nothing else was powerful enough.
It is finished. We are no longer under sin’s curse. Our name is no longer “condemnation or “guilt”. Our name is “redeemed”.
That means that as moms, we can trust that our short-comings are not the end of the story. No, the story is much bigger and grander than that. Our God is redeeming those limitations as we continue to move forward in faith, not fear. We slow down to lean in to listen to his still, small voice…the one that could go unnoticed. What we find is that with every morning light, his mercies are new and again we are redeemed.