If you have read my column, you know that I write about where I am in life and what is on my heart and mind at the time I sit down to write. This week we celebrate the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.
In Christmas seasons past, I have always put myself in Mary’s shoes…, tried to view the Christmas story through her eyes and her feelings. She was so young, no older than 15 and probably younger. I know she must have been scared about all that was happening to her. However, like most young teens, I feel that she probably lacked the maturity to fully grasp the gravity and consequences of the situation.
As I age (as we all do whether we like it or not), I find myself more and more viewing the birth of our Savior through the eyes of Mary’s mother. What did she feel when she found out her daughter who was supposed to be a virgin was pregnant? Was she angry? Was she hurt? I think she must have felt both of those emotions plus so many more. An angel did not appear to Mary’s mother. I think she must have felt her daughter had been morally loose and in that day and time, that was a crime punishable by death. She had to be terrified of what would happen to Mary. Her heart had to be broken knowing the path her daughter would now travel in life. She would always be looked down upon, she would always have those who would whisper about her when she walked by, and their friends, neighbors and acquaintances would always judge her.
How did Mary’s mother treat her daughter? Sometimes when we are disappointed or hurt we lash out and say hurtful things. We let our anger or hurt control how we treat those we are supposed to love and care for. Did Mary’s mother leave her feeling alone? Did she leave her frightened and defeated, feeling as if she had no hope and no future?
I pray that was not the case. Human nature is human nature and I know that people in 4 BC could not have been that much different than people in 2020. All of us have made mistakes and choices that took us down a path we would have preferred not to travel. A path that led to heartache and difficulties we had not planned for. I have made some of these mistakes myself. What I learned from making these not so wise choices is that most of the time, the consequences of those choices teach all the needed lessons. No one likes to be kicked while they are down or be made to feel even worse than they already do. As a mother, I have tried to make sure my boys knew they were loved and cared for no matter their mistakes. Learn the lessons that life will inevitably teach you and determine to make better choices.
While we know that Mary was in this situation because she was an upright and moral young lady who found favor in God’s eyes, her mother and others in her community did not know this. I pray that Mary’s mother was able to overcome her own hurt and betrayal that she must have felt that her daughter had made this poor choice. As a mother, I know that my first instinct is to protect my children no matter what. No matter what they have done; no matter what difficulties they might be facing, I want them to know that I am there to fight beside them through whatever giants they might be facing. I pray that Mary’s mother was the same and that she took her sweet daughter in her arms and loved her through the whispers, the judgments and the fear. I pray that Mary’s mother helped her find the peace of God, the solace that only He can offer when we face our darkest moments. Mary brought our Savior into a broken world, a world that He came to redeem. Two thousand years later our world is still broken but because of Jesus’ birth and 33 years later his death, we can overcome this broken world. We have hope and peace and even in the darkest moments He is there comforting us like the good Father He is. As I celebrate the birth of our Lord, I will be ever mindful that Mary’s mother was not much different with Mary than I am with my boys. We want to love and protect them always. Merry Christmas to you and your family and may you all find the peace of our Lord and Savior as we end 2020, and I pray you have a happy and prosperous 2021.
Charlette Madden is a Mother of 2, a Louisiana Tech graduate and serves as Editor and Advertising Director for The Gazette. Contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org