Sunday, May 14, 2017

A Lament for Mother's Day

For some of us, Lord, mother’s day is the day when our pain breaks all-the-way-through. Because all of us have found ourselves facing brokenness this day. Some of us long for nothing more than a child to fill our arms. Some of us have walked the lonely weary road of miscarriage. Some of our babies are sick, and some of us have even faced the unfathomable pain of burying a child. Some of us mothers, we wonder if perhaps we aren’t quite up for the task before us. We snapped this morning at our sweet little ones, and we feel the ever-present guilt and shame of never answering with quite enough patience or correcting with just the right balance of mercy and justice.

Some of us, Lord, have walked through hurt as daughters or sons to mothers who aren’t here to celebrate with us today. Perhaps they are across the country, or perhaps they have gone home to you. Some of us had mothers who tore us down when we needed to be built up, who couldn’t be all the things we needed them to be.

We have lost much, Lord, and we ache with the weight of the losing. And yet, Lord, we do not find ourselves landing forever in our loss today. Yes we grieve, but not as those without hope. Your grace lavishes on a day that bustles and rubs, because sometimes motherhood looks nothing like we imagined.

You offer hope and unending grace for those who have more children than they imagined or hoped for, and the ones who ache to hold a baby in their arms. The ones whom motherhood was foisted upon, and the ones aren’t really sure they even want the title. The one who has lost, and the one who every month swells in hope and anticipation, only to find herself wondering if there’s a God who always picks someone else.
And so we will come together Father and meet you at the altar, we commit ourselves to the holy act of mothering one another. We will worship you by loving our children, by serving our own aging mothers, by caring for our adult children, and by loving deeply kids who are not related by blood.

It is a sacrificial offering, Father, for us to say “if not, you are still good.” For us to rest in the truth of your grace and hope even if our longings are never fulfilled. Even if we will never be the mother we long to be, and even if we never have the mother we deserve. Even if we have no children to swell our hearts and bellies. Even if we have lost more than seems right or fair, we choose today to trust in your goodness and love.

Lord some of us find ourselves this morning wrung all the way out by motherhood, in one way another. We have given everything we have to give and more, we are weary and shaky with the effort, at the end of our abilities and patience and hope. Remind us this morning that the very place we find you most intimately is at the end of ourselves. So let us come, today, to the end of ourselves. To the very end of our longings and dreams and fears and grief, of our pain and our hopelessness and expectations. And right there at the end of ourselves, Lord, help us to find you in brand new ways.

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