We’re driving a lot of miles this Christmas, and you’ve been on my mind today.
Mary, did you know?
Did anyone tell you? Did you know about the peeing when you sneeze? Or laugh? Or hit a bump on the road too hard? No one told me.
God, that donkey ride must have been uncomfortable.
Comfort ye, comfort ye my people.
Did you know that soon you wouldn’t recognize your body anymore? That your skin would be stretched tight under your used-to-be-flowing robes? That your very patience would be stretched thin? That your joints would loosen as hormones and tears flowed?
How high was your blood pressure? Was your anxiety skyrocketing? You had to raise the very SON OF GOD. No big deal. Behind the blue headdress and sweet flannel graph smile we’ve pasted on you, were you freaking out? How the old biddies must have loved to give you advice. Glory.
Glory to God in the highest, and peace among all men.
What did you think when you heard his name? Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Jesus. Had you always wanted to name your son Peter or Matthew?
And Mary, can we talk about the hunger and the cravings? Did you wake in the night, your body needing something that you didn’t possibly have on your store shelves? You didn’t even know about Jello and Joseph wasn’t there with you – bless Elizabeth for tending to your pregnant self. Is that why you wrote that line in your song?
He has filled the hungry with good things.
How did you do it? I’m freaking out about giving birth in a hospital filled with white sheets and technology and nurses and maybe a blessed epidural. No one can mommy-shame you for not having a natural birth. Take that, internet. But how did you do it? The little porcelain nativity set on our mantle is so clean. No hay, no mud, no blood and life pouring from you.
I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind.
And you lost a son, too, didn’t you? My heart grieves this Christmas for mamas whose arms are empty, whose arms are missing one of their own. Did you know it would come to that for you? Could you even have imagined how the prophecies would play out?
Who were you when you weren’t preparing to be mama to the prince of peace? Some call you virgin, some call you holy mother. Some call you queen of heaven and saint.
This Christmas, dear Mary, I call you friend.