From today's Gospel is this message.
And what teaches us humility better than motherhood.
I remember recovering from surgery a little over a year ago, wanting nothing more than to go to sleep, but knowing Shelby had to nurse. I gave up my need and accepted that being a mother meant to ignore the pain in my abdomen and my breasts as my milk was coming in and let her latch on. I could have easily given in and demanded Jeff give her formula, but I let go of the luxury of sleep, and pain relief, and got up to nurse.
As mothers, we make ourselves the maidservants of our children and the Lord. God has given us the tremendous responsibility and joy of raising these amazing people. A friend of mine, Ann-Elise has the following heading on her web page: "He must increase, I must decrease"- John 3:30 . She has blogged about how parenthood is an amazing way for one to allow God to increase in our lives as we decrease. I believe that when we allow God to increase through being mothers, we accept the humility of our position. We allow God's grace to enter into our lives as we are accepting His will to become mother's and when we acknowledge the humility of accepting our position, we become better mothers.
"Here I am, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word." Luke 1:38
Mary accepting her role as the mother of our Lord is the most beautiful reminders that the mother who humbles herself to her role, will be forever exulted.
"Part of this daily heroism is also the silent but effective and eloquent witness of all those BRAVE MOTHERS who devote themselves to their own family without reserve, who suffer in giving birth to their children and who are ready to make any effort, to face any sacrifice, in order to pass on to them the best of themselves. In living out their mission these HEROIC WOMEN do not always find support in the world around them. On the contrary, the cultural models frequently promoted and broadcast by the media do not encourage motherhood. In the name of progress and modernity the values of fidelity, chastity, sacrifice, to which a host of Christian wives and mothers have borne and continue to bear outstanding witness, are presented as obsolete...WE THANK YOU, HEROIC MOTHERS FOR YOUR INVINCIBLE LOVE! WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTREPID TRUST IN GOD AND IN HIS LOVE. WE THANK YOU FOR THE SACRIFICE OF YOUR LIFE...In the Paschal Mystery, CHRIST RESTORES TO YOU THE GIFT YOU GAVE HIM. Indeed, He has the power to give you back the life you gave to Him as an offering..." John Paul II, Humanae Vitae "The Gospel of Life"
As JPII says, we do not get the recognition in the media or society that should be granted to women who make the sacrifice of becoming mothers and humble themselves to accept God's will. Again, we decrease, God increases and as we humble ourselves, we are exalted as women who walk in Mary's footsteps in heaven.
I once heard a midwife say that when you look into the face of a newborn, you are looking into the face of God. I have never heard it said better. And as we look into the faces of our growing children, as we decide to give of ourselves to make their lives better, as we humble ourselves to the will of God the Father almighty we are exalted in our place in heaven.