“This Child will break your heart!”
How about that for an opening line?
As I was just pondering on the season of Easter, for some reason, my mind went away from Jesus for a bit, and I thought about Mary, His mom.
And for some reason, my heart was heavy, just thinking about her. For a moment there, I tried to imagine if I were Mary. Right at my child’s christening, I am told that this child was going to break my heart.
The exact words were:
“And a sword will pierce your heart”
Then Simeon blessed them, and he said to Mary, the baby’s mother, “This child is destined to cause many in Israel to fall, but he will be a joy to many others. He has been sent as a sign from God, but many will oppose him. As a result, the deepest thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your very soul.” – Luke 2:34-35
I mean, how am I to handle that? As mothers, we expect some little ‘trouble’ with our kids along the way, but to be told from the start that this child would cause you grief? That’s a tough one. If I were Mary, what would I have done? Hidden him away some place where trouble couldn’t find him? Pray that God would take out all the trouble? (Oh well, He was God by the way). I really don’t know right now, I just know I would be really sad, totally worried about him. I doubt if I could handle that!
As mothers, if God were to reveal the future of our kids to us, could we handle it? We all want our kids to grow older and follow certain paths in life. We may say to ourselves, “I’m willing to go with God’s will for my child’s life”. But, when push comes to shove, could we really? I know what it’s like to have some set ideas about certain areas of our children’s lives. We expect them to follow certain patterns, and if they aren’t we just don’t want to have to deal with that. What makes me think that things are going to move according to my well laid out plans for my children? What makes you so sure? What gives us all that assurance?
God never promised that our children would turn out the way we want them to. He’s interested in building character in us and in our kids. Whatever He may need to get that done, He’ll do. Sometimes, that process may be painful, but in the end we all will be the better for it.
What are some of the lessons we can learn from Mary as mothers raising God’s treasures?
- Mary was totally yielded to God’s will for her life. Even though Mary hadn’t seen the total picture of what God had in store for her and her child, she was prepared to go along with God’s purpose.
“I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her. – Luke 1:38
- Mary knew she needed others in her journey. Mary sought her cousin, Elizabeth in her journey of motherhood. As mothers, we need to realize that we need covenant relationships with other mothers – the kind of relationships that can trickle down to even our children. We need families who share our faith and our core values as we raise our kids. We also need great friendships as mothers, those people who we can be completely comfortable with, relationships that will encourage our walk with God.
At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” – Luke 1:39-45
- Mary was a mom who preserved the destiny of her child. She took in all the prophesies she was told about Jesus and it wasn’t recorded that she went about telling the whole world “Did you get the memo? I’m having the Messiah?”. Rather, the Bible says she took them in and pondered on them. She was willing to allow God’s plans to be revealed in His own time, she didn’t force anything to happen. She was willing to trust God for His timing and purpose for her son’s life.
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart… Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.- Luke 2:19, 51
- Mary was willing to ‘allow’ Jesus to fulfill His ministry as the son of God. She never tried to stop Him because she knew His purpose and destiny. How many of us moms will be willing to allow God’s plans for our children come to pass? Will we allow our kids the freedom they need to be who God has called them to be? She also didn’t try to ‘over mother’ him. She knew her place and her limits. She knew when to back off and when to allow Him to be God as He was. She knew when to remain in the background and just keep him in prayers.
His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” – John 2:5
- Mary knew she had to give up her son at some point and when it was time, she did just that. Painful as it was for her, Mary let go of Jesus when it was his time to fulfill His reason for coming to the world. Indeed, she was pierced through with the sorrow of losing a child. She fulfilled her own purpose – birthing, nurturing and releasing the Messiah. That was why she was born, and she accomplished her raison d’etre – her purpose for existence.
Therefore the soldiers did these things. But standing by the cross of Jesus were His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. – John 19:25
God knew the kind of young woman Mary was, the one who would be able to handle the pressure of being the mother of the savior of the world. What a huge responsibility that was! Same way the Lord knows we can handle those treasures he’s committed to us. Yes we can and we will. All by His Grace.
As we celebrate this season of resurrection, just remember Mary and all the lessons.
What are your Mary lessons? Please share.