Happy Resurrection Sunday everyone! Many of us know the story of Jesus and the significance of his death but have we ever stopped to think of it from Mary’s perspective? As Jesus’ mother, what must it have felt like for her to watch her son, whom she carried and raised, be put to death?
Let’s go back to where it all started. Mary was living her life, minding her business, when an Angel by the name Gabriel appeared to her. The news that he brought with him left Mary in shock and confusion. She, a virgin, had been chosen by God to give birth to His Son. I’m sure Mary felt unqualified to carry such a being in her womb. She was not rich (Joseph was a carpenter), she was not popular (there is no mention of her in the Bible before this occurrence), and she was a young teenager with little life experience. How could she be qualified to carry, give birth to, and raise the Son of the Most High? If I were in Mary’s position, I’m pretty sure I would have entered motherhood with even more insecurities than I had when I gave birth to my son. Nevertheless, God called her to something that would change the trajectory of the world.
For those of us who are moms, we know that when we have a child, we automatically tap into the Mama Bear within us that we didn’t know existed. We look into the eyes of our baby for the first time and we fully accept the challenge of protecting this little innocent being, by any means necessary. Mary was given the responsibility of protecting The Messiah. This priceless gem was placed in her hands. Mary, with the help of God, had to make sure that Jesus fulfilled his purpose here on earth, and she did just that. Jesus performed his very first miracle because of his mother (John 2:1-11). While at a wedding, Mary went to her son and let him know that there was no more wine. Up until this point, Jesus had not yet revealed his true identity as the Son of God, and he was hesitant to do so in this particular moment. Mary’s response was a simple, “Do whatever he tells you” to the servants. She knew what her son was capable of, and she knew the power inside of him. Because of the influence Mary had on her son Jesus put aside his own reservations and began his journey of pursuing his destiny. This speaks to the crucial role that mothers play in the lives of their children. Our tender care and words of affirmation are sometimes exactly what they need in order to fully walk in their destiny, and this rang true for Jesus and Mary.
There is a pain that they say no parent should know and that is the pain of having to bury your child. The natural order of things is that a mother raises her child and ideally, when that child is an adult they bury their mother. Mary was in the position of not just having to lose her child but having to watch him be crucified.
As a mother wanting to protect your child is natural, so is wanting your child to reach the fullness of their potential. For Mary, even with knowing her son was the Christ, the reality that her child reaching his full potential meant also losing him, must have still been painful.
How hard must it have been for Mary to see the way he was treated and not want to jump in front of Jesus and take his pain and his punishment?
While mothers aren’t giving up their children to be the savior of the world, having to release your child to go live into their purpose is not always the easiest either.
As a mother it was hard enough for me just to release my daughter into the hands of another for school. While being happy that she was reaching a new level, the idea of this new, although temporary, separation was tough.
The irony here is that though devastated, Mary could likely identify with Jesus’ position the most. What Jesus was doing was an act any mother could relate to. A mother is willing to sacrifice for those she truly loves. We’ve heard stories of mothers showing super human strength to save a child and even sacrificing their life for the life of their child.
The pain of losing a son was not lost on Jesus either. With his dying breath, one of Jesus’ last words was “mother behold thy son, son behold thy mother” (John 19:26).
Jesus did recognize that even with the world gaining a savior, a mother losing a child leaves a hole. He asked a disciple to fill it, and give her the love of a son.
I know there are women reading this who may have lost a child of their own. Maybe your baby never made it into this world or you, like Mary, had to bury your own child. Your pain is real and it’s relevant. But I want you to know that we have access to the Holy Spirit who is the ultimate comforter. In John 16:7 (KJV) Jesus was speaking to the disciples about his soon coming death, and he promised that once he was gone, he would send the Comforter (Holy Spirit) to them. When the Holy Spirit showed up and descended upon the people, guess who was in that number. Mary, Jesus’s mother. Even after her son’s death, she remained faithful to his teachings and ended up in the right place at the right time.
She received the comfort that she needed when she needed it the most and the necessary power to go out and share Christ’s goodness with others. What Mary teaches us is that even in our pain, we can still live out our purpose through the power of the Holy Spirit. If you are at a place where you are trying to navigate your way through the loss and grief of your child, know that the Comforter is waiting for you to place your hurt and pain in His hands.
Mommi Joanna, Mommi Jess, Mommi Sanya