Sunday, April 24, 2011


I've been known to have a strange and wandering mind. I'll find myself thinking on something and be halfway down two dozen rabbit trails within a minute. It's probably a family trait, as I've seen it play out in conversations amongst my extended family. Start on one topic with four people and about two minutes later we've got seven different conversations going on.

So, all that to say, my mind. It wanders.

At Christmas time I thought about who could have been there for Mary during the birthing of Christ. Due to Jewish cleanliness laws, I have no trouble believing Joseph (who is called "faithful to the law" in Matthew 1) had no part in it. It'd be unheard of in that culture. So another woman (or women) no doubt. And seeing as how everyone was coming into Bethlehem, I find it easy to assume that they probably weren't even alone in that stable. Who else would the inn maker have offered it to in order to make a little more money during this extremely busy time? And if not even a person staying at the inn, surely there would have been a woman nearby who would have been sought out. It's not as if childbirth is this quiet, peaceful event. So I always wonder - who was the woman/women blessed enough to usher Jesus into the world? 

Anyway, that thought niggled my mind. (What? Niggled is a word, my spell check says so...) As I came into the Lenten and Easter season, being a mother, once again I thought of Mary. My dear, sweet, wonderful children are perfection. But, they are also dear, sweet, wonderful human beings. So they sin. It seems to happen quite often. I began to wonder how life must have been for Mary (and Joseph), raising a sinless son. Surely there were still frustrations and arguments because Mary, after all, was human. She sinned. So did she recognize that her son was sinless and that any hindrance in that perfect familial relationship was purely  from her own failings? How long did it take before she realized this? And what about his half-siblings? How did they feel having a perfectly sinless brother? I mean, couldn't that get down right annoying? Or would it all have been ok, since, ya know, Jesus would have handled it all perfectly.

I don't intend any disrespect or facetiousness. I honestly wonder. Because how often do we attribute the frustrations of motherhood on the actions or attitudes of our children? But how often ought we to really consider that we are also to blame? All the time, it seems to me.

So my heart goes out to Mary, living with her sinless son, all the while harboring her own sinful heart.