I've been taking my time with the book of Luke this summer as a part of a series that my Church is putting on, and I am LOVING it because it gives me time to fully digest and meditate on all of the truths in front of me. The one verse that I keep coming back to in my mind is about the mother of all mothers.
"But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." - Luke 2:19
There are about a gazillion things about this verse that make my spirit flutter, and I think I will continue to have new happy thoughts and feelings about it every time I think about it. But here are the things that keep surfacing:
Mary is a mother just like me.
This verse happened just after her first son (who just happened to be the Son of God) was born. As I read it, I realize it could have just as easily described the moment after each of my kids were born "Sarah treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." I look at my tiny humans and can't help but think about those memories that I have stored from the first few hours of their lives when they were slimy and warm and all mine. Aaaand, now I'm crying. But seriously. Treasured and pondered.
She treasured up ALL THESE THINGS
All these things. ALL THESE THINGS. What were all these things? Was it the birth and the joy and her new baby who would save humanity? Was it more? I believe it was more. The good, bad and the chaotic. She had just had what I assume to be a semi-traumatic experience as she had been traveling and couldn't find a decent spot to have her baby (plus no epidural for this holy mama), and then right after she had her baby a bunch of shepherds came to find her and the baby to confirm the news they'd heard from the angels. Yet, in the midst of this chaos, Mary, found her stillness and treasured "ALL THESE THINGS" in her heart. Every thing that happened was a part of her story. It was the perfect will of God for her life.
Then again, this isn't so different from us moms either, right? Think about your births. Did they go how you had planned exactly on the sheet you handed to your L&D nurse when you entered the hospital? Probably not, but how do you remember that experience? When you tell the story of your birth, you don't say "I wish it would have gone exactly as I planned." No, you tell your story exactly as it happened. Every terrifically terrifying detail. The more off-plan your birth was, the more miraculous it seemed. That is your story. You treasure it in your heart and praise God for it daily.
She treasured these moments more than once
See the passage above for reference. When Jesus was 12, Mary and Joseph lost him for 3 days only to find him in the temple listening to the teachers and asking them questions. Like any parents who thought they lost their son (especially the one that was chosen to change the course of history - no pressure, guys), they were anxious, but Jesus replied in a super Jesus-esque way of course (you know, with a question) and blew all of our minds away at the wisdom he possessed as a preteen. Then, he obeyed his parents and continued to grow in wisdom and stature. Mary treasured this experience as well. Again, "all these things." She treasured how she lost him, and how they found him and how the confronted him and how he responded and how he obeyed her and Joseph. This is the small glimpse of Jesus' childhood we are revealed, so I have a feeling we need to treasure all these things as well.
Take away as a mom:
While my children are not the Savior, I want to treasure the moments of their lives in my heart. God created each of my children with a purpose in mind, and just like Mary treasured and pondered the moments she was given with her son, this is an incredible reminder that I need to slow down and cherish the moments I have with them. The big things, like their birth are a given, but also the small miracles like the first time your toddler obeys quickly when you ask him not to touch the TV stand because God is working in his little heart as he chooses in that moment to obey. Taking the time to see the miracles (big and small), God works through the lives of your children is a humbling and incredibly rewarding experience. Just like God, chose Mary to be the mother of Jesus, He also chose you to be the mother of your little humans. It is an honor and privilege and an incredible responsibility. Treasure it.