Last week at work I was chatting with our new admin assistant. She asked me if I had any children – ugh! I hate to say not yet, especially since I have two babies in heaven, but I don't want to get into it with everyone. A few minutes later another co-worker came up to join the conversation. He works in a different department, so I don't know him very well. The first thing he asks is, do you have any children? Then he quickly follows up with, do you want children? Knife straight through the heart! Although I say that I don't have any children, I note that I have a number of godchildren and nieces/nephews.
"Oh no" he said, "unless you change the diapers, unless you pay the baby sitter, until you get a call from school to pick up a sick child, you don't have children." He went on and on with these scenarios. Obviously I know that being a godmother and an aunt is a big difference from being a parent. I don't try to pretend that I am a mother to these children, but I didn't want to look like a selfish person with no love for children. When he asked my co-worker to back him up, she agreed. It seemed like he was just twisting and twisting the knife! I sat there with a fake smile on my face, wishing I could escape the situation.
To top it all off, he then goes into the whole fake "Don't have children, they are such a burden" thing. He has joked around about this before and I'm sure most people just laugh along with him, but it is so not funny. Why don't people realize that? Why don't people think that perhaps there may be a reason that a couple doesn't have children and that you may actually want to try to be sensitive to that? There is nothing I desire more than what he was describing.
Afterwards, our admin assistant said that she doesn't really agree with what he said about not having children unless they are your own, but how could she not? In the eyes of the world, we are not parents. His comments hurt me even more than I realized. Over the weekend I had one of those Nothing is Ever Easy experiences while trying to get a blood draw and that caused a downward spiral of emotions. Luckily my husband came home just in time to comfort me. He reminded me of Luke 18 where Jesus said, "Let the children come to me." Even though I am not their mother, I have an important role in these children's lives (although I often feel like I am not living up to my end of the bargain). God has withheld the gift of parenthood from us, but he has blessed us abundantly with nieces, nephews, and friends who trust us enough to invite us to be their children's godparents. And in my heart, I know that I am a mother, both to my babies in heaven, and to our future children, however they may come to us.
"What strength have I that I should endure, and what is my limit that I should be patient?" Job 6:11
"Even when I walk through a dark valley, I fear no harm for you are at my side; your rod and staff give me courage." Psalm 23:4
"People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them, and when the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. Jesus, however, called the children to himself and said, "Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these." Luke 18:15-16
1. How do I handle difficult comments from friends, family, and acquaintances? Do I have someone to confide in and vent to?
2. Do I bring my cares to the Lord? Am I honest in expressing my feelings to Him?
3. In what ways am I already a mother?
I Heard The Voice Of Jesus Say ... (verse 1)
By H. Bonar (1808-1889)
I HEARD the voice of Jesus say,
Come unto Me and rest;
Lay down, thou weary one, lay down
Thy head upon My breast.
I came to Jesus as I was,
Weary, and worn, and sad;
I found in Him a resting-place,
And He has made me glad.