I’m not one to talk about religion very much, it’s just such a personal thing.
But lately I’ve had Mary on my mind.
I picked up my Bible the other day; something I haven’t admittedly done in years.
I’ve been exhausted and spent with sweet M’s late afternoon/early evening wailing. I was prepared for this. All through my pregnancy I reminded myself that I only produce colicky babies. Although I hate that word. “Colicky.” It makes me think that a baby is crying for no reason. And I think there is always a reason. Even if I don’t know exactly what it is.
The story of Jesus’ crucifixion is a powerful one. He allowed himself to be tortured, nailed to a cross, and murdered so that the souls of all people could be saved. Even if you’re not religious, it’s still a powerful story. This guy had the ability to stop what was happening to him by calling out to his Father, but he chose to endure it in hopes of saving people. In today’s world, we’d call that a hero if nothing else. And that’s still pretty cool.
But as I read this story, for the first time in my life as a mother, what really struck me and pulled deep at my heart strings was Mary.
The mother of God.
A simple human.
But she was so strong. So mighty. So collected.
While many mothers would have screamed, begged, pleaded, been absolutely hysterical as their son sacrificed themselves for the good of others, Mary stood strong. Mary stood brave. Mary stood.
She watched it happen.
The baby that nourished from her breasts. The toddler whose sticky hands no doubt wrapped her legs in hugs. The gangly child who lost his milk teeth and smiled a toothless smile to her. Her heart, disconnected from her body.
That was her child.
And yet, Mary stood.
She was strong, and brave, and as composed as she could be. She knew that in those hours of agony, and during his hour of death, her child, Jesus, needed her to be strong. Needed her to be brave. Needed her to love him like no one else ever could.
So when I read this story, the gift Jesus gave to us is so blatant; the gift of cleansing our souls.
But when I read this story as a mother, the gift Mary gave her son is so beautiful. And a gift that only a mother would, and could, know to give.
For her child, Mary stood.
A colicky baby will never come close to the torture I’m sure Mary felt; not a fraction of it. Her pain is that of which I could never even begin to imagine. But goodness, if in her darkest hour with her child, in such unfathomable emotional pain, Mary could be the calm, loving, strong presence her child needed, what in the world can I not do for my children?
I mean, Mary stood.