The Cross of Motherhood

You feel guilty calling it a cross, but it is.  I know they’re precious.  I know their hugs, kisses, and snuggles are the purest of joys.  But there is still a cross to bear.

I honestly don’t know how my wife does it.  That’s not sweet, enduring, husband talk – it is absolute truth.  I literally don’t know how she does it.  I spend a couple hours alone with our boys, and I am exhausted. I’m talking verge of breakdown exhausted.  And Abby does it all day long.  All. Day. Long.

I came home from the work a little later than normal recently and this was the scene:  Owen was screaming that piercing scream that only baby’s possess (the one where their voice starts to rattle), Holt and Charlie were in the bath together transferring all water from tub to floor, and the neighbor was knocking on the front door seeking payment for the Girl Scout cookies we apparently ordered.  And in the middle of the storm is Abby. And she gets to do it all over again tomorrow.

It’s madness.  But it’s a madness you are already familiar with.  Motherhood looks a lot like the gospel to me.

You exhaustively pour yourself out for the good of helpless ones who cannot comprehend your sacrifice and rarely even stop to give you thanks, yet you keep on giving, compelled by the powers of love.  Sounds like the Savior to me.

And perhaps that connection is the key – not just to surviving these years, but to actually flourishing in them.  I wonder if you were so overwhelmed with what Jesus has done for you that you would be set free to become that for your children?  I think that’s how it’s supposed to work.

Jesus sacrificially loves you eternally.  The knowledge of this fills your heart with overwhelming gratitude that you are willing, dare I say eager, to love like your Savior loves, cross and all.  You count it a privilege and an honor to share in the sufferings of Christ.

But the question is, how?  Practically, how can you sacrifice like your Savior?  And then you see your children as the answer to that question – the real practical way to love like you have been loved.

This is how martyrs have gladly faced down their execution, and this is how mothers can gladly face down a sleepless night.

Motherhood is a cross.  It’s okay to view it that way.  It doesn’t mean you don’t love them, in fact, it displays your love for them.  Jesus did not enjoy Calvary, but He was glad to go to Calvary.  And this is why we know He loves us.

My prayer for moms this Mother’s Day (and I really did stop to pray for every mom who reads this) is that you would be so filled with the gospel that motherhood would become your gospel application.  And that your husband would give you a break from your cross.