How does one start to write about Mother’s Day? The Day that encapsulates so much. It’s one of those things that brings every single emotion to the table. Every. Emotion. Good and bad. This one day on the calendar brings with it so many different experiences, so many different reactions. I can think to only borrow the opening words of Chares Dickens to his novel “A tale of two cities”.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”
That really sums up motherhood. There’s So much joy and love. Highs and lows. Good days and bad days. Days when you think you really nailed it. And days when you want to hide in your wardrobe!
Mother’s Day intensifies all those feels! A day filled with love and cuddles, visits of family and breakfast in bed. But it is also a day of loss and heartache. To some of us, this day is empty, void. A spotlight on the loss of a mother or of a child or fractured relationships. To others it is a hollow day reminding us of dreams that are broken. Or it’s a day that just reminds you that your Mother’s day is a lot more complicated than the adverts would have us believe.
There’s a mother in the Bible whose life hadn’t turned out how she imagined. She’s not your pin-up, go to example of a great woman in the Bible. She’s not Mary, Hannah or Sarah. She’s the other woman. Hagar. The other woman to Sarah. The mother of Ishmael not Isaac. The example of, perhaps, how not to do life. But yet she has an incredible encounter with God.
We find her in Genesis 16. Pregnant and mistreated she flees her home, her employment, her life. But God meets her in the desert, comforts and reassures her.
She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me, for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” (Genesis 16:13)
God sees you. Whatever this day holds for you. God sees you. YOU. You with the baby that won’t sleep, you with the crippling morning sickness or daily IVF injections. You with the silent loss. You with the juggling of motherhood and work. You as you guide your children into adulthood. You whose children have grown up and left home but still you worry about them.
He sees you. For He is El Roi – The God who sees.
Wherever you are, whatever this day holds for you – the good, the bad, the ugly, the happy tears, the sad tears – God sees you. And He comes with an abundance of grace and love specifically for you and your season.