Motherhood is still pretty new to me. My sweet little Charis Anne is about 17 months old, and she does a great job of keeping me on my toes. I have genuinely loved every second of being a mom. It has changed me for the better, I believe. And one of the ways that I love most is the fact that I have a better understanding of the never-ending, unconditional, truly radical love God has for me. I feel like God is constantly giving me these revelations of who He is through my relationship with Charis. I have grown to love these moments and truly treasure the new and exciting revelations I get from God about Himself.
I’ll let you in on my favorite revelation I’ve received so far: One beautiful day, I took Charis to one of our favorite local parks where they have this awesome covered bridge. She had run quite a bit ahead of me on the bridge and then realized it and turned around to find me. I then knelt down and opened my arms wide, and she took off after me with her arms open and a big grin on her face. Once she reached me, we embraced and laughed.
Y’all…THAT’S JESUS! He is never far from us, ever. And what’s even better is the fact that if we ever wander off and lose track of Him, He’s always waiting for us with arms wide open like I was with my daughter. I’m so thankful for these sweet little revelations God has shared with me in this season of life. To me, they are such treasures.
Being a mom stretches you, am I right? It can be the most special and rewarding thing but also the thing that takes you to your breaking point. My hope is to encourage all you mommas out there with another sweet revelation the Lord gave me. It comes from the book of Luke, where we get to see a glimpse of Mary treasuring some of her moments with her son, Jesus.
Here’s where we start—“When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” (Luke 2:17-19 NIV). It’s so easy to “treasure” things when they are spectacular, isn’t it? Let’s face it, these shepherds were marveling over this little miracle who had just made his appearance into the world, the one who was going to be the Savior of the world. And Mary was treasuring it.
I’m sure you and I were no different when our sweet little babes finally entered the world! We treasured them! We couldn’t stop posting about them on social media, or sending pictures to our friends, or staring at their perfect, tiny features. We were proud of our little miracles, too! I love that Luke thought it was important to include the fact that Mary “treasured” up those thoughts in her heart. Let’s all strive to be moms who live for those moments to treasure.
So, I bet y’all are wondering, “What about those times when motherhood is just tough?” You know, those days when the baby won’t stop crying and seems to be glued to you for all 24 hours of the day? Or the days when your children have pulled on every nerve you have? I love what Luke goes on to tell us later on in chapter two about Mary’s perspective for those not-so-perfect times with our littles. To set the stage, Joseph and Mary had just left Jerusalem after attending the Passover feast. As they were traveling home, they realized that Jesus was not with them, as they had originally thought. So they traveled back to Jerusalem and searched for him. Ya’ll, they searched for days and days! Three days it took them to find Jesus in the temple. Can we just talk about how this is like every parent’s nightmare? I would be devastated if I knew I had left my child in a whole other town.
Luke 2:51 tells us, “Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.” Let me be real, I know my first reaction would not be to treasure this moment in my heart. I would probably be losing my ever-loving mind on my child at that point, but not Mary. She was able to see the good and the bad and savor them as treasures in her journey of motherhood. And for that, Mary wins Mother of the Year.
I think back just a couple days ago to a rough day I had with Charis. My sister-in-love was getting married, and we were all gathered at my in-laws’ for the rehearsal. Charis had managed to be everywhere she shouldn’t and into everything she could manage to find herself around. I was at the end of my rope. I was frustrated and exhausted (because, let’s face it, she does not sit still), and I found myself parenting out of a place of frustration. Why could she not pull it together enough to just do what we all needed her to—throw the darn petals down the aisle? I wasn’t proud of my parenting that evening, and, even still, I find myself asking for forgiveness.
As I sat in the car headed to dinner that night, I thought to myself, “How can I turn this around?” And I believe God planted a sweet seed in my heart. As I got Charis out of her car seat, the words, “I sure appreciate the boldness and fearless personality the Lord has put in you, Char Bear. I know He will use you to do big things” came out of my mouth. There it was… There was the treasure. Those words came from the heart of God for my little spitfire, and they ministered to me as much as, if not more than, they did to her. God is so intentional to bring peace and healing if we just ask. And that night, that’s what both Charis and I needed.
So I sit and wonder, is it the fact that Mary was raising the Son of God that made her Supermom, or maybe it’s the fact that she was just a regular mom who figured out a sweet secret to enjoying her season of motherhood, treasuring every minute? I don’t know for certain, but I’m going to believe it’s the latter. I’m going to choose to follow Mary’s example: to treasure it up in my heart, the good and the bad. Will you join me? Let’s strive to be mommas who love the good and the bad. Let’s be moms who see things the way the Lord intended them to be seen. Let’s also be moms who encourage one another in those dark moments of parenting to see our littles for who God has called them to be. The truth is we are all better together. And I know I’m thankful for my tribe and for those moments of revelation that guide me in my parenting!