A Complicated Mother’s Day

Sheltering in place has been a tremendous source of “mommy guilt” for many mothers of adult children not living at home. I’ve had numerous conversations in my “mom” groups about how hard it is to keep a safe “social distance” from our adult children. As a rule, they can’t come visit. If they do, gloves, masks, and standing 6-ft away ruin the experience. It’s heart breaking. If this is your first time away from your children on Mother’s Day, I encourage you to remember that motherhood transcends space, time, and yes, even global pandemics. Don’t worry. You’re “Momnipresent.”

Momnipresent is the unbreakable, unshakeable, unlimited, indestructible, ever-present love of a mother.”

Kamryn Adams

Motherhood was obviously important to God. Otherwise, he would have just snapped Jesus into existence from Heaven. Instead, God chose to bring The Savior to earth through a mother. Jesus had a mother who nursed him, changed him, and rocked him to sleep. Yes, the identity of Jesus is the “Son of God” but we also know he was a mama’s boy. In John 2, Jesus performed his first miracle because his mama told him to — turning water to wine. At his death in John 19:26-27, Jesus made sure his mother would be cared for. God cares about mothers, everywhere and all the time.

Motherhood is complex and Mother’s Day is complicated for many women. Mothers who leave their children at fire stations and behind garbage cans are doing so because they believe the child will have a better life. Nobody envisions the child growing up in “the system.” Certainly not! They envision the child being adopted by a loving family with the means to give the child everything it needs and wants. There is a mother behind bars this Mother’s Day because she committed a crime in a desperate attempt to save her children from something or someone. There’s a mother dying of addiction because of the pain of being separated from her child. A mother, mourning the loss of a child whom she had to bury. A mother, with terminal illness knowing this is her last Mother’s Day. Tomorrow there will be a mother drunk beyond understanding because she’s mourning the loss of the secret child she terminated–even if she has other children to give her flowers. God determines who gets the unspeakable joy of being a mother. He also heals us from the sometimes devastating pain of motherhood.

On Mother’s Day I always reflect on 1 Kings 3 when two women came to King Solomon to settle a dispute over a baby boy. Each woman claimed to be the baby’s mother. So, King Solomon decided that he would cut the baby in half so they could each have a part. One woman agreed to have the baby divided between them. But the real mother cried out, “Oh no, my lord! Give the child to her. Don’t kill him.” With this, Solomon knew who the real mother was. The real mother was willing to give up the child rather than tear him apart. The real mother embraced the pain for the sake of her child.

Hannah wanted to be a mother so badly that she vowed to God that if he would bless her with motherhood she would give the child back to him. She did. “Now I am giving him to the Lord and he will belong to the Lord his whole life.” (1 Samuel 1:28) Rebekah was forced to send her son Jacob away in Genesis 27 to save his life. In Exodus 2, the mother of Moses kept him hidden for three months. Then hoping to save his life, she put him in a basket and laid him in the Nile river. It worked out for her and it will work out for you, too. God made you a mother and you are “momnipresent”, everywhere, all the time.

This Mother’s Day I’m praying for all the mothers whose hearts are burdened by separation from their children. Whether the separation is temporary from COVID 19 or some other life circumstance, I pray you know that God made you a mother on purpose. If you don’t know Jesus, I pray that you come to know him this Mother’s Day and that he give you a heaping dose of His love, grace, and faith. If you do know Jesus, I pray that you remember that no weapon formed against you will prosper. (Isaiah 54:17) That all the pages of your life were written before you lived a single day. (Psalm 139:16)

And most importantly….

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

Romans 8:28

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