Year after year I find it difficult to leave Christmas behind me. All the beauty, quiet anticipation, glory and wonder come and go far too quickly. Thoughts of Mary, in particular, linger this year.
I recently reread something I had written years ago about having an "advanced degree in homemaking." After 55 years of marriage and working for only a small portion of those years outside the home, I guess that's true. Looking back, it can be tempting to think it something of little significance - days spent immersed in the ordinary.
We know very little of Mary's life before her beloved Son began His ministry, but I think it's safe to say most of her time consisted in doing the ordinary tasks of making a home for her husband and children. Did she feel the weariness of doing the same things over and over again? Did she question her ability to raise this special child God had entrusted to her alongside her other children? Did she feel she wasn't doing enough or worry about what her neighbors thought about her? Did doubts ever trouble her as she watched her son with anticipation?
In the weakness of my own humanity, I imagine those things may have crossed her mind from time to time, but I believe she had the wisdom and grace to know that her life, with all the ordinary and overarching extraordinary, mattered greatly to the Lord.
In a moment of breathtaking obedience, Mary surrendered her heart and dreams to all that the Lord had for her and in return saw a dream she couldn't have imagined come true.
Painting by Morgan Weistling