A mom’s desperate prayer is answered as she gives birth to her long-awaited son. But there’s a catch—she’s unable to keep him with her. After he is weaned, she takes him to Eli the priest and says, “I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord“ (1 Samuel 1:27-28, NIV).
A young mom is given the calling she never asked for: birthing the Messiah. She raises Him, treasuring every moment in her heart as most mothers do, then must watch helplessly as her beautiful boy hangs on a cross, suffers a cruel, brutal death, and is placed in a tomb. Despair turns to delight as He is raised again, only for her to endure another parting as He returns to His Father in Heaven once more.
Hannah and Mary. Two mothers with two very different experiences. But the same strand is woven through their stories—uniting not only them but mothers everywhere.
We surrender our bodies as they grow and change with this new life within us.
We surrender our schedules (and our sleep!) to our babies’ constant nurture and care.
We surrender our hearts as they beat outside of our bodies within these little extensions of ourselves as they take tentative and increasingly longer steps outside of the nest.
And ultimately we surrender them—as they forge a life increasingly independent from us and the home we have built together.
It is the natural order of things—this slow surrendering. Yet knowing this is no less painful; no less terrifying. In fact, removing the reins and allowing them to run free from our supervision, guidance, and care may take every ounce of resolve that we have.
But the beautiful thing is, we know Who we are surrendering them to. Hannah knew. Mary did too. Their children were safe in their Father’s arms. And so are ours.
It doesn’t matter if they’re in preschool or a prodigal; God knows them better than we do, and He fights for them. He gathers them to Him like sheep to a Shepherd, and He leads them home.
But mamas, we have to let Him. We have to eventually let them go. And in doing so, allow the Father to do His best work.
As moms, we live through constantly evolving seasons of surrender. But this Mothers Day, as we reflect on a God who surrendered His own Son because of His great love for us, let’s live boldly in the knowledge He can be trusted with our little flock. And what a burden lifted to know this responsibility isn’t all on us.
He carries the weight of motherhood. And He carries us.