May 10 

How Then Shall We Live?

Devotions on Living the Deeper Christian Life

     “But Mary kept all these things, and pondered [them] in her heart” – Luke 2:19

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When Benjamin West, (1738-1820) the first American-born painter to study abroad, was a little boy, he sketched roughly the outline of his infant sister’s face as she lay in the cradle. His mother saw his genius, if not skill, in the sketch, and with a natural mother’s pride, kissed her boy. “That kiss,” said the renowned artist, “Made me a great painter.”

In this verse in Luke 2:19, it is recorded that Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. It is not recorded in the Bible the “things” that Mary pondered in her heart. The word, “Pondered” is used only one time in the New Testament in this verse. The word in the Greek means to converse within oneself., “to throw together,” to make war against,” of meeting in order discuss.

Did the mother of Jesus experience that she treasured in her heart. Was it the time the angel appeared to her and spoke life into her womb?  Or, was it the first time she wiped the tear off the check of her savior son? Maybe it was the time that she watched him take his first steps, knowing that he would one day have to walk away from her to a destiny that she could only tremble to imagine.  I wonder what it was like to hear her child’s first words when she knew it was the same Jesus who was there at the dawn of time, speaking things into existence. 

Mary was a mother who was chosen to raise the God man as a baby, then toddler, child, adolescent, and ultimately a man. She was chosen to encourage him, to see his genius, and speak it out to him. It was she who would most certainly shape his feelings as a person. How was it that the same Jesus that held the secrets of the heavens and the earth, had to be taught to write his first letters. Yet, he did, in all its simplicity, begin the fullness of his humanness in her arms.  They were the same arms that would also cradle his body after his crucifixion. The same hands would again touch his pierced side after the resurrection.  Who can begin to imagine the breath and depth of her experience.  So much had to be kept treasured and cherished in her heart because it was just too divine, too human, all at the same time.

God gives each mother special “things” to ponder in their hearts about each of her children. These are things that are too precious to descend into mere words. A mother’s heart was made to love in the reflection of God’s love. There are no words to describe the fierceness of it, the depths of it, nor the limits of it.  Although it is not a perfect love, it is a mirror of divine love.

Your mother’s voice is the first voice you ever hear – even before you are born. As a newborn baby, you know your Mother and prefer her above anyone else. Cherish your mother and be sure she knows that you love her and appreciate everything she does for you. Time is short, like a vapor. Love your mother before time is gone. If your mother has already gone on before you, take the time to recall memories of her. Share these memories with your family so that she will live on in your hearts.

Lord Shaftesbury, who spent most of his life trying to improve the lives of the poorest and most oppressed people in Britain, in 1842, said this about mothers. “Give me a generation of Christian mothers, and I will undertake to change the whole face of society in twelve months.”


<>————<> W O R D S  OF  W I S D O M <>—————<>

     <>–The Promise of Long Life–<>                   

“Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” – Exodus 20:12

     <>–ROCKING DESTINY–<>                   

“The hand that rocks the cradle rules the nation and its destiny.” – South African Proverb

“The impression that a praying mother leaves upon her children is life-long. Perhaps when you are dead and gone your prayer will be answered.” – D. L. Moody