Text Box: The Motherhood of Mary
By: Judy E. Denby
	Thereís a Christmas song that Iím starting to hear a lot on the radio, and itís one Iíve loved ever since I first heard it several years ago, called ďMary, Did You Know?Ē.  It was written by Mark Lowery and Bud Green, and is in a minor key so itís not one of the bright cheery carols that we tend to associate with the Christmas season.  I love it because of the melody, and especially because it asked a question that Iíve often asked myself.  When Mary was caring for her firstborn, after all the events surrounding His conception and birth, did she really have any idea of who He was?  Obviously she knew that this was a special child, and the Son of God, but did she even have the faintest idea of how His life would touch and change other lives? I am not about to propose that we make her more equal with Jesus, as I understand some Roman Catholic teachings to promote, but I think about how amazing it must have been for her at that time in her life. 
	Although I have yet to experience motherhood, I was a obstetrical nurse for several years.  While itís no substitute for doing it myself, I have had the opportunity to be with many women as they gave birth and then began caring for their newborns.  Iíve been able to talk with them about their lives and their attitudes toward their children.  When a new life is born and the cord is cut to separate the infant from the mother, the mother (and usually the father)  wonders what will become of this baby.  As they count his or her fingers and toes, and find joy in his every expression, they are also thinking about who he will be when he grows up.  There is something so special about a baby that we hate to think of the day when he (or she) will leave that stage and become a toddler, then go off to school, then hit puberty, and then reach adulthood.  It takes about 18 years, of course, but Iíve had some mothers tell me that it feels as though it happened overnight.  And itís difficult at times for the mother when her baby starts to show signs of independence and no longer is depending on her (or the father) for its every need.
	Now imagine Mary.  Sheís already had an interesting and unusual pregnancy (see Luke 1:26-41) and delivery (Luke 2:1-19).  I donít know about you, but I canít imagine what it must have been like to be as young as Mary and have all this happen.  And then, once sheís gotten over the delivery in a stable, she has perfect strangers trooping in to look at her and her infant son.  Iím no historian, but it must have been a little weird, even in that time.  
	Maryís attitude seems to have been wonderful, and it goes without saying that God knew how she would deal with it all when He chose her.  In Luke 1:46-55, while visiting her cousin Elizabeth, Mary gives some indication that she knows of Godís power, but I have to wonder if she really knew what it was all about and what would eventually happen. Now see her sitting and holding her beautiful little boy, rocking and singing lullabies to him.  As the song goes, when she kissed her little baby, did she know she had kissed the face of God, or that He had walked where angels trod?  Did she know He would performs miracles?  Did she ever pause to think about the true future of this child?  And did she ever, in her wildest dreams, think about the fact that He had come to earth to die?  
	Once Jesus is grown, Mary isnít mentioned a lot in the Bible, which is of course appropriate since the real story is her son, and not her life.  But Mary at least has a starring role in the birth of Godís Son, and the events that would lead to the salvation of all of us, even 2000 years after the birth.  Mary, did you know that your little baby would conquer death, and have such a profound effect on people like me so many years later?