God shows Himself through creation
As a child, I marveled at the vastness of the universe, the beauty of sparkling galaxies, the endless expanse of time and space. I was awestruck by tiny things too, like the unique patterns of fingerprints, the mysteries uncovered under a microscope, the miraculous weaving of DNA, and the millions of tiny colored dots that produced a photograph. God revealed Himself in the biggest of the big and the smallest of the small. And then I forgot about Him. Teen years. College years. You know the time.
God calls through motherhood
Then I became someone’s mommy. Motherhood is truly a miracle in and of itself, from the first butterfly flutters during pregnancy to the gift of a vulnerable young life entrusted to my care, and the responsibility and joy of raising a child in a great big world. It was in this new role that God laid one single question on my heart that I could not shake. “What will I tell my child when she has big questions about life?”
You know they’re coming. Why is the sky blue? Why are kids mean? Why do people get sick? Will I die too? These are questions that everyone asks and I knew that God, the Creator of the universe would be the best source of answers. I surely didn’t have really good ones and I’d read enough books, taken enough classes, and lived enough life to know that even the smartest people on earth didn’t have the best answers. In fact, the smartest people know that they actually know very little.
This was the start of my journey to find an authentic faith—because I was a mommy and my baby deserved the best answers. My journey looked like this…I watched a friend’s life. She seemed to know about Jesus and his teachings, and unlike many religious people, she was doing this unusual thing and living it out every day and serving others so graciously! That was weird enough for me to want to investigate. She shared with me her story of faith. I watched some more. Another friend told me her story which included a tragedy, sadness and abandonment. But still she had an amazingly optimistic view of life despite her history, which she attributed to a personal relationship with Jesus.
I also watched the lives of people who seemed to be sinking in quicksand as they got older. Self-medicating, self-righteous, self-loathing. What was the common denominator? They either didn’t know Jesus—or they hated Him.
I needed to start somewhere, so I finally decided to find a good Bible and actually read it. I started with the New Testament. As a literature major, and a self-professing intellectual elitist, I had to find the logic in this book. I read Matthew 20:17, where Jesus told his disciples, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” I had very little faith, definitely tiny-as-a-mustard-seed faith, but that was all God needed to reveal Himself to me. Through a serious of providential events, like a teacher giving out the book The Case for Christmas by Lee Strobel, a former atheist turned Christian, and great discipleship in a local church, I was finding the best answers to any question my child could possibly ask. Of course, I was getting answers to questions I too had as a child and I was overjoyed.
That was nearly thirteen years ago. Today, I have five children who count on me for guidance. I don’t have all the answers, but I know who does and I go to His Word everyday so that I might be equipped to impart true wisdom. I believe that motherhood is often tied up in knots of guilt, worry, lack of control, and just plain old exhaustion. But I also know this verse that truly resonates in my life and I think every mom, new and experienced, can appreciate this— in Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus says,“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
It matters for all eternity
Isn’t that just what every mother needs? Rest, both physical and spiritual. Being able to knowingly answer questions about why people are mean, why there is pain and suffering in the world, and where people go when they leave this earth.
Rose Kennedy once said, “Whenever I held my newborn baby in my arms, I used to think that what I said and did to him could have an influence not only on him but on all whom he met, not only for a day or a month or a year, but for all eternity — a very challenging and exciting thought for a mother.”
I think this is on every mom’s heart. I pray for each of you on this Mother’s Day, that you allow God to help you through this challenging and exciting time and that you allow Him to give you rest, knowing that the search for answers need go no further. Happy Mother’s Day! Be Blessable!