Mother's Day Devotional | Day 3: Mothers Without Children
A Great and Godly Gift
Women and Mothers
Mothers Without Children, Day 3
“9 They said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?” And he said, “She is in the tent.” 10 The Lord said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him. 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years. The way of women had ceased to be with Sarah. 12 So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, “After I am worn out, and my lord is old, shall I have pleasure?” 13 The Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, now that I am old?’ 14 Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son.” 15 But Sarah denied it, saying, “I did not laugh,” for she was afraid. He said, “No, but you did laugh.” - (Exodus 18:9-15)
Mother’s Day, though meant to be a day of high honor and praise and happiness, is, sadly, a bitter day for many women. This is so for women who have a terrible ache to bear children, but can’t; for those who’ve conceived, only to miscarry; for those who who’ve had children, only to have them die or disappear; for those without children, want them, and seem to be surrounded by other women who are pregnant; and for those women who don’t really want kids, but feel dishonored for their choice. To you sisters, I want to say to you: I love you. You are honored by God and ought to be by everyone else.
I don’t believe it’s my place, nor within my power to remove the bitter hurt that may come with Mother’s Day. I only hope I can support you and encourage you to hurt well, trusting in the Lord, and letting him leverage your difficulty for your strength, hope, and holiness--and future, sweetened joy. Join your sisters in the Bible as I parade them before you with their hard stories of motherhood and femininity, honoring both them and you:
Mary lost her first son--the son of true promise, Jesus--to public humiliation and brutal execution on a bloody Roman cross.
Sarah desperately wanted a son and had to wait nearly a hundred years; she finally lost hope and mocked the prophecy of angels; her best, most youthful years were never poured out on Isaac.
Hannah wanted a son with womb-aching desire; she prayed and fasted so woefully that a priest thought she was on drugs. When the Lord finally gave her Sameul, she had to let Eli, the judge, raise him.
Rachel wanted to have kids...and after seeing her co-wife with Jacob and her maidservants all having kids...she finally got Joseph, only for him to disappear for the rest of her life, in Egypt. She died, believing he’d been torn apart by beasts.
We see these women as heroines. They suffered greatly for their desire to be mothers. They poured themselves out for their children. The Lord, in his mysterious and hidden wisdom, withheld from them, gave to them, and took from them. In it all, for better or for worse, sometimes with great faith and at other times, with practically no faith, they entrusted themselves and their children to the Lord.
A special note to those sweet sufferers--you women who have conceived, but your babies were never brought to birth...among whom are both of my sisters and several ladies in our church: you are mothers. The Lord gave you a life in your belly. He gave you a child, whether you ever gave it a name or discovered its gender. Jesus loves your child and has a special, unique love for little ones--especially yours. You are to be honored greatly since the Lord decided to let you bear pain, rather than your baby. But, let no one--especially the sad, possibly embittered voice inside of you--let no one ever tell you differently. You are mothers and Mother’s Day is just as much for you as anyone else. You share more in common with the four Bible women above than you can know.
God’s blessings and honor to you all.