A Chosen Mother
What word comes to mind when you think about taking your first child home from the hospital? So many do for me, but one sticks out the most. TERRIFYING. Bliss and overwhelming joy permeate the hours surrounding birth, but then in a flash you’re forced out of the comfort of round the clock care, much like your child leaving the womb. All these questions and worries set in. Will I be a good mom? How do I survive today, the next 18+ years? How can I best love my child? Will my sweet baby grow into a successful adult?
The anticipation of welcoming a child into your home multiplies until the weight of it seems almost too heavy to bear, but there is a safety net. As long as this baby is growing inside me, he or she is safe. The hopes of the future are big and the seeds of plans are small, but mighty in idealistic fruition. When Elizabeth, Mary’s cousin, visited her during her pregnancy with Jesus, she was filled with a bounty of excitement. Her words documented in Luke chapter 2 are dripping with anticipation, joy, and hope. “Oh, how my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed.” I can recall several conversations when I was pregnant with my first baby that were also filled with words that seemed larger than life.
So when does it all come crashing down? This overwhelmingly relatable feeling that we, as moms, are not enough. The excitement quickly fades to doubt. The birth of a child doesn’t just bring a new baby, but it also births new feelings bigger than you’ve ever felt. Bigger joy, bigger sense of purpose, bigger delights, but also bigger fears, bigger worries, bigger uncertainties. Mary had great reason to be filled with confidence in the hours after Jesus was born, after all she was mom to the prince of peace, but we know with great certainty that she was a flaw-filled sinner like each of us moms. I picture her laying there, after the thrill of birth subsided and the shepherd and angelic visitors left, she stares into the eyes of a newborn filled with the same doubts.
One thing the scriptures are definitive about is Mary was specifically chosen for the role of Jesus’s mother. She was favored by God. What a humbling description for a mother. To live out that identification of favored, could radically change how we view ourselves as a mother, in light of the role God gave us. What if we as mom’s flipped our self-doubting narrative and replaced it with the deep understanding that we are favored by God, not only because we are his chosen daughter, but because we He has chosen us to be a mother to our specific child. Our confidence as mothers would soar to heavenly heights. The most direct result being a peace in our souls that no matter what we do, God is in control of our children. No damage we think we are doing to them is greater than the redeeming grace God is constantly showing them. Another thing that would change is our children. They would be raised to know that their identity is sealed and their purpose is found because they are a chosen child of God. We might not be raising the King of Kings, but the children we were gifted are going to have an impact on the kingdom of God. This should incite a healthy reverent fear, but it should also excite us with the privilege to lead them to a relationship with Christ and plant those seeds that blossom into mighty fruitful trees.
So this season, as the thrill of hope is ripe, let the truth that was found 2,000 years ago in the life of a mother, favored by God, saturate your heart too. Let the fears and doubts melt away. Momma, you were chosen, you are chosen and will continue to be chosen to be the best mother your children could ever have.