” All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” – 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Mother’s Day is about love. But it’s not a day of joy for all women, including some mothers. For some, it’s also about loss and longing. We must recognize that joy and sorrow are part of Mother’s Day. Everywhere in the world there are women who are hurting today for any number of reasons. Some have lost children. Some grieve for the babies they could never bear. Some weep for children gone astray, or for children who face difficult and life-changing challenges. There are women who have suffered miscarriages. They endure the anguish of feeling their bodies begin to change to make room for a growing baby only to lose the child. There are women who made the brave and loving decision to place their baby for adoption, but now aches for the baby she carried and feels judged for the painful choice she made. Somewhere a woman is staring at yet another single line on a pregnancy test, while another realizes the infertility treatments were unsuccessful. Still others continue to wait out the process of adoption. Everywhere there are young women whose heart is aching, fighting back the tears wondering if they will ever have the chance to have a child. We all know women who are filled with joy on Mother’s Day and we all know women who have sorrow on Mother’s Day.
No matter which side of motherhood you are on, Romans 12:15 is applicable for you today: “Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.” When we see our circumstances in view of God’s mercies, we unite with others through their seasons of joy and sorrow, of rejoicing and of weeping. Because Christ experienced both rejoicing and weeping, He knows the intertwining of joy and sorrow deeper than we ever will. We can hold fast because we are being sanctified through gifts of joy, trials of sorrow, and experiences that bring us pain. And because God himself dwells in us, He also guides us, protects us, and cares for us.
To those who endure grief on Mother’s Day: I am deeply sorry. It is hard. I’m not going to pretend it isn’t hard. The only thing I know for sure is that Christ loves you. He really does sympathize with you. You can read God’s words for you in Hebrews: “This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” (Hebrews 4:15-16). I think God has a lot to say to you in these verses. He is reminding you that he isn’t far-off. He wants to comfort you. He wants you to find His grace.
I hope you are touched with love this week and beyond, somehow, through the pain. I hope you feel that your sorrows are seen, and that your love and your losses are honored. Our prayer is that you will be truly blessed this and every day.
- Why is it that grief and healing take time? How is our faith in God strengthened through suffering and sorrow?
- Why is it important to remember that God is at work, even in the midst of suffering? How does this bring you comfort?
- What can we do to help those we know who mourn and grieve?