Last year on Mother's Day, I was standing hand-in-hand with the team at church, praying before the service. Noah and I were holding onto a very special secret - I was pregnant. The elder in charge of praying for us that morning thanked God for the mothers present in the room, naming them individually. I silently included myself in that prayer. God knew even if no one else did. ;)
I knew I was excited to be a mother, but I didn't know the full joy I would experience while owning that title. Yes, sometimes I get frustrated or tired, but seeing his smile causes all that to fade away. The absolute adoration that shines forth from his eyes is enough to melt my heart and cause me to praise God in gratitude.
As I reflect on motherhood, I can't help but think of Mary, who was impregnated by the Holy Spirit, nearly divorced quietly, spent most of Jesus' childhood moving from one location to the next, most likely endured gossip because of Jesus' birth and ministry, and watched as her beloved son was sentenced to hang on a tree. My prayer for Ezra is that God would be glorified in his life or death. Mary endured both of those realities - God was glorified in Christ's life and death. I cannot imagine the excruciating heartache Mary experienced as she watched her son, the Son born to die, be mocked, beaten, and hung. I'm even amazed at Jesus' mindfulness and care of her as he was being crucified, for "when Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, 'Woman, behold your son!' Then he said to the disciple, 'Behold, your mother!' And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home" (John 19:26-27).
I love Ezra and have dedicated him to the Father, often repeatedly renewing that dedication, because I can hold onto him too tightly. I can get fearful of the "what if's" and "unknowns." Trusting God has taken on a new facet - trusting Him with my son. If I think about that more, though, Ezra is not "mine." He is entrusted to me by the Father. I am to raise Him to know Jesus, so he may be full of the Holy Spirit and on mission to share Jesus Christ to the glory of his Father in heaven. No matter what may come in Ezra's life, I know that it will be to God's glory.
Mary was entrusted with the most precious Gift. I'm sure along the way she had to relinquish her own expectations in favor of Jesus' mission to give God glory while on this earth. Likewise, it is my responsibility to sacrifice my own expectations for Ezra in favor of God's sovereign, perfect plan. His glory is the purpose of our lives. Sharing Jesus is our mission. Lord-willing, Ezra will glorify God in his life and death.
That is the best a mother can hope and long for.