As for Mary, she treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19
1 January 2019
Numbers 6:22–27, Psalm 66(67):2–3,5,6,8, Galatians 4:4–7, Luke 2:16–21
When we speak of Mary’s motherhood as “real”, we mean that she is a mother like any other, except that her child is divine and human, and was conceived without the involvement of an earthly father. Of course, these are not minor exceptions. Even so, they do not undermine that in every other respect, Mary is a real mother. And, like any other mother, she is bound up with her child’s life forever. She is not merely a convenient womb within which Jesus is gestated and born, and after which, he will go on to live his own life independent of Mary and the rest of the family.
Conversely, this does not mean that Mary is the hovering “helicopter-mother” we witness in contemporary culture. Rather, Mary’s lifelong devotion to Christ means enduring deep suffering, including, in a sense, a rejection by Jesus, as he fulfills the Father’s will all the way to the cross and beyond.
This dynamic of loving and letting go is the often-painful experience of many mothers. In our experience of family communion, we are not immune from the pain that arises from the investment to love—and neither is Mary.
Lord Jesus, may I live in imitation of your Mother and so learn to love and let go of my family, even unto death.
Sister Anastasia Reeves OP
With thanks to the of Diocese of Wollongong who have supplied the weekly Advent and Christmas 2018 reflections from their publication, Saviour—Daily Advent and Christmas Reflections 2018. You can read the reflections as they are published here.