I See You, Mom

Day 2 of 5 • This day’s reading

Devotional

I Acknowledge the Waiting 


“It’s time...pull over.” 


My husband was driving over a bridge, and he shot me a weird look, but he complied. We walked to the edge of the lake, looking at the gray sky and green water; it was as if they were mourning with us. I pulled out the small doctor’s office pregnancy test I had been carrying for weeks, and gazed at the double lines one last time. They were the only proof of the baby that I carried for only a few weeks. 


I took a deep breath, grabbed my husband’s hand and threw the test in the water. It was the closure I needed. There was no announcement, no burial, no one even knew I was pregnant, so I grieved in silence. It wasn’t until years later that I found out that women I knew, women I worked with, my best friends had all experienced the same loss, the same waiting, the same pain, and experienced it all in silence. 


A woman in 1 Samuel also suffered in silence. Hannah longed for motherhood. She came to the temple to pray alone and was seen by the prophet Eli. Her heart was so troubled that only her lips moved; no sound came out. She suffered in silence. Eli told her to “go in peace, and her petition would be granted unto her.” Once her son arrived she sang a beautiful song proclaiming, “The Lord is my salvation...” It is this song that is echoed by David in Psalm 113:9, “He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children.” Which became a part of the Hallel, a song that was sung at passover, possibly even the last passover song before Jesus’ death in Matt 26:30. 


Her silent suffering, her quiet waiting, her invisible pain, became an anthem that echoed throughout scripture. It became a banner for those who suffer and are seen by a merciful and loving God. A God who brings himself from on high to see and know and die for those who are in the deepest suffering. The lowest of the low. 


He sees you. He sees you in the waiting, in the silence, in the dark, and He sits with you, bringing you peace. But He also gives you a voice. He gives you words when there are none. He gives you space to communicate every range of emotion and feeling. That voice is what will echo through the lives of others who are waiting, others who are sitting in silence under the unjust veil of shame, guilt, and pain. That voice is what will set others free and lift their eyes to a God who sees them. 


To the mother who is waiting. To the mother who has lost. To the woman waiting through infertility appointments, and treatments. To the mom who is waiting to be picked by an adoption agency or family. God says, "I acknowledge your waiting. I acknowledge the pain and the injustice. I see you. I sit with you. I love you, and I hear you even when the words are not there." 


Prayer:


Dear Lord, grant us peace in the waiting. A peace that passes all understanding. A peace that fills up our lungs with praise as we cry, “it is well.” Let us be women who sit with others in their grief, let us be women who wait, celebrate, and grieve in communities that mirror your commitment to relationships with women-- steadfast and true. Amen.