Sunday, December 25, 2011


You should watch {this} first, if you haven't. It's lovely: An Angel Fortells Christ's Birth to Mary.

I want to talk to about so many Christmas things, and one thing is how close I feel to Mary - the mother of Christ. When I had newborn boys I thought so often of Mary, and felt like I suddenly understood and loved her in a way that I never had.
We were both young mothers with perfect, beautiful sons.  They were so small and helpless and yet managed to completely embody love. Being in a terrifying operating room, away from my home in an uncomfortable and unfriendly-seeming place - it wasn't hard to imagine the fear, loneliness or displacement Mary may have felt in the stable behind an inn.  And yet, when I held those babies to my chest, it didn't matter. Nothing mattered but them. Just as miraculously as Christ was created, my sons were created.
And even now, it's not hard for me to imagine that they will grow and make the world a better place. They may not be the Saviour of the world, but they are important.
Mary had read the prophecies of Christ, and I'm sure she would sit and wonder and pray, and cry about her son's future. I have read the prophecies about our time, and although I don't know how my sons will fit in - I, like I'm sure every other mother, often wonder, pray, and cry about the futures of my sons.
I love Mary. I respect her. Sometimes I wish that we, like Catholics, prayed to Mary - because I often think that if anyone could understand me it's her. But I know that Christ understands me.
Christ may be our brother, but he is also our symbolic mother and father. Like a hen gathering her chicks under her wings, like a woman with a suckling child, right?
Christ knows, and God knows. If anyone understands exactly what every single pain and joy of parenting is, wouldn't it be God - the father of us all?
How many of his children has he watched suffer at the hands of his other sons and daughters? How many times has he experienced the joy (and simultaneous sadness) of us learning something new - and growing just a little more independent?
Like Travis pinning a baby down and repeating "If you just hold still, I can change your diaper faster and we won't all be covered in POOP," and growing frustrated that the boys don't understand, how often has God said this simple thing to us? Just hold still. Just wait a bit longer and this will all work out. Just trust me. I've changed a million diapers, I'm an expert.
But we don't hold still and wait. And cover ourselves and the carpet in our own feces and then our parents have to stick us in the bath.... and... is this off Christmas topic?
I thought it was a pretty good analogy.
I am really grateful for Christ. I love him. I believe in the story of Christ and the tale of Christmas with all my heart. Truth with a capital T.
And this year, I am so grateful for Mary. I always kind of took her for granted. Someone had to have Christ, and Mary was wonderful and good. She was obedient and brave.
But this is the first year that I realized, really realized that first and foremost she was a mother.
She nursed Christ. She was up with him in the middle of the night. She cleaned his sticky fingerprints off the floor. She watched her son grow up into the wonderful man that he was, and then she watched him suffer and die and the hands of his enemies.
Knowing that he was redeeming the world couldn't have made that much easier.
I love her and am grateful to her, and to all the other mothers in the world who are trying to raise their children to be good, happy, loving individuals that follow the path that God has laid out for them, even when it's hard.
And I'm trying to be a mother like that, but it's hard. So I'm glad for all the good examples that I have.

Merry Christmas.
I love you.

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Hailey said...

merry christmas to your fam, too!! when we went to church last night i just adored hearing the birth story of mary's child!! i love it!! :D god bless ou all, everyone! haha

My little Montenegro said...

Hi! from ─░stanbul and merry merry christmas :)...I love your blog and add my blog...and happy new year for your family :)...

Polly said...

You had me until you said "cover ourselves and the carpet in our own feces"

collette charles said...

i stalk your blog. and i wish we were friends in real life because you are amazing. and a great writer! so the song "mary pulled the shawl" is an AMAZING way of seeing it through mary's eyes. for me. not sure any of the youtube versions are any good, but the lyrics are great. it's not christmas for me without that song. keep up the great work!! your babies are DARLING.