Weeks ago I watched a short video that is being used to raise funds to produce a documentary called "Still Loved" about stillbirth that is being made in the United Kingdom. One of the mothers in it said, "I gave birth to death". I can't seem to shake that phrase, something so simple, something I have felt, but I haven't been able to state it in so few words. That actual act is so haunting, so heart wrenching, yet so full of love. I have given birth to death. I cannot think of a way to possibly be closer to death, then to have it inside your body, give birth to it, then hold it in your arms. I felt like I saw God's face on that day when I looked at my precious Koen's face.
Last week I watched "Women of the Bible" on Lifetime. It was so enlightening for me. I was in tears watching the part that focused on Mary. One of the commentators posed the question about Mary, wondering if she knew when she gave birth to Jesus if she fully understood his purpose, that he was sent here to die. With the phrase still rattling in my head, I lost it when I had the realization that Mary had given birth to death. Not in the same way that I did, but did she know as soon as he was born that she would lose him? That his death was eminent? She gave birth to life, the most holy life to walk this earth, a life that was sent here to die for our sins, so that we may live an eternal life, a life that gave us life. She raised him, watched him grow, and had to hand him over to the Father and allow him to fulfill his purpose. We worry about our babies moving out and going to college, can you imagine how Mary felt sending Jesus off? She let him go and do his Father's work. She let him fulfill his purpose.
When the angel Gabriel came to tell Mary that she was carrying God's Son, a job too daunting for most to even comprehend. News that could have resulted in her death when others learned that she was unwed and with child. Mary stood in front of Gabriel and God and said: "I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” (Luke 1:38) I want to be more like Mary. I want to wake each morning and say "Lord, I am your servant" and then be open to whatever He puts in my path, no matter how scary it may seem.
Myrrh was one of the three gifts brought by wisemen at Jesus' birth. Not a typical gift to bring to a birth, given that Myrrh was used for embalming. Even at his birth God was showing us that Jesus was sent to die. Did Mary see that? Did she know? Could she even fathom that she would be there to watch Jesus die on the cross? She watched the entire brutal scene unfold with her own eyes. John stayed with her, but it appears it was too painful for Jesus' other disciples to watch. His mom remained there through it all. Mary watched Jesus die. She gave him back to his Heavenly Father. Mary saw the face of God not only at Jesus' birth, but every time she hugged him, watched him sleep, saw him preach, and as he died on the cross.
Mary was never was angry at God during her grief. She continued to say " Lord, I am your servant". At my lowest I would question "why?", but I never lost my faith. I felt God's presence even in my despair. I knew if my faith was lost, what would be left? Without my Jesus I wouldn't have had the strength to stand or move forward. I wonder if Mary felt the same? Imagine the peace and love Jesus must have bestowed on his momma from the heavens while she wept for him.
I will be thinking of Mary this Christmas as I praise God for the gift of Jesus. I will think of Mary each morning as I pray, "Lord, I am your servant".
Heard this song again today after I wrote most of this blog, it seems to sum up so many of my feelings. I wonder if Mary knew?
Link to the "Still Loved" Documentary
I am Jackie.