Last night I couldn't sleep. I thought it was something I ate at a staff holiday party. I was up and down all night. At one point, to distract myself, I decided to read. My book was in the bedroom where Eric was sound asleep (which kind of blew my whole "something I ate" theory since we'd had the same thing). I didn't want to start a new novel in the middle of a sleepless night, so I picked up one of the Bibles on our shelf and turned to the Christmas story.
It's kind of a funny thing. Like Noah and the Ark, David and Goliath, and Adam and Eve, the Christmas story is one of those stories in the Bible I rarely turn to (unless our pastor is preaching from that story) because I've heard it so many times I feel like there is nothing new.
But as I read last night, I was really drawn to the parts about Mary. For so long in my mind, Mary has always been this young girl, in love and about to be married, when an angel visits her and tells her she will give birth to God's Son. She gives birth to Jesus and that is where the story has ended for me. Until last night. It hit me in those wee hours of the morning...Mary was a mom too.
She gave birth...in a barn...with a feeding trough as the only bed for her baby. No hospital with its doctors and nurses and epidurals. I wonder how many times she sat watching her baby sleep. I wonder if her heart leapt when He learned to sit-up, crawl, and walk. I wonder if she melted the first time He giggled. I wonder if she ached when He wasn't feeling well. All of these things I feel as a mom now, did Mary feel them too.
The Bible doesn't say much about Jesus' childhood, which is why I often unintentionally overlook the Christmas story. But how wonderful...that God sent a baby to save us all. And what joy Mary must have felt as His mother. Being a mom has been a wonderful experience for me thus far, and I think that for Mary it was probably the same way.
While I'm still not feeling great tonight (I'm supposed to be at another Christmas get together, but decided against it when after feeling better this afternoon I got a fever and chills this evening about an hour before we were supposed to leave), I'm thankful that in my sleeplessness last night, God gave me an opportunity to see something about the Christmas story I hadn't seen before. I hope tonight brings better rest though and a morning without a fever and chills.