A friend from across the ocean sent me this encouragement from Mark 15:40 today, Some women were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the other of James the younger and of Joseph, and Salome. In Galilee these women had followed him and cared for his needs. Many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem were also there. I encourage all of you who are mothers in whatever format, to be like these women, strong and caring at this time.
Our children, families and communities need us more than ever before to be the rocks, to not only keep family life going, but rise up and make family life fun, joyous, educational, spontaneous, and life-giving.
Various commentaries about Mark 15:40 talk about the darkness that preceded the verse, Mark 15:33-41 There was a thick darkness over the land, from noon until three in the afternoon. The Jews were doing their utmost to extinguish the Sun of Righteousness. And then as Jesus died, the veil of the temple was destroyed, a sign of the destruction of the church and a nation. Cautious not to make too close an analogy to this time to the current situation we are facing in the world, it does feel like there is a darkness of fear, anxiety, and uncertainty around the globe and in our communities. At the time of the darkness preceding and following Jesus death, it is the Galilee women that Mark, Matthew and Luke point out, as being there, following Jesus, caring for his needs, and staying there until the end. One commentator describes this as to show the faith and love of these holy women, because in the very presence of the enemies of Christ they dared to stand by his cross, and shrank not from testifying their piety and devotion. The different gospels describe how closely the women stood to Jesus, but it seems agreed that they stood as close as they could (behind the soldiers), so they could see and hear Jesus.
We women need to do the same right now, it is hard and we are all feeling uncertain, anxious and nervous, but our kids and families need us. We need to choose not to let the enemy use unplanned events, or coronavirus, to rob of us life and joy. We could all let this season derail us from our focus as mothers and caregivers and ultimately life and hope givers to our kids and families.
Moving forward right now needs to be more than surviving, moving forward is forging a new way, a new rhythm for your kids and family. You are still a mother, wife, daughter, sister, sister-in-Christ, neighbour, employee, colleague, school parent and daughter of God. Try and be present in every moment, keep leading your children and family and directing them to the hope and love of God and full life they can live in that.
Let’s be the Mums and women like those around Jesus at the end, strong, protective, and caring to the end.