Holy Mother of God!
Mother’s Day here in the UK.
A veritable mountain of cards, chocolates, cut-flowers and restaurant reservations have been bought and paid-for.
We all have a mother. And mothers all love us without condition. So once a year we should return the favour. Once a year we should remember and celebrate their 24 / 7 / 365 love-without-condition (with a mountain of paid-for objects provided especially for that purpose).
This comes to mind.
“Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves.” Matthew 21:12
“On reaching Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple courts and began driving out those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves” Mark 11:15
“So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables.” John 2:15
We get hung-up on the “tables” … on the “angry Jesus” … on the “them” in this family story. We love to remain detached from (either) the historically recorded events … or the preserved fictional prose … or the tender poetry … or the control freakishness of it all … We love to sit on the sidelines and miss the humanity happening right in front of our eyes.
Holy Mother of God!
Mothers are human-beings just like me – just like you. Mothers doubt … cry … rage … question … grieve … get tired … do their best not to show it.
Mothers know the very thing they create will leave them even as this scrap of life is ejected so painfully from their very wombs. Mothers are reminded monthly of their role in creation … in the order of things. Mothers not yet mothers know this too. And yet “mothers” are supposed to love-without-condition always and for ever.
But how do you love each equally and without condition when you have created a brood determined to kill each other?
Or if not quite kill each other – then at least to find the weaknesses in each and exploit them mercilessly? Because it’s what we creations do (the other 364 days of the year). We find and exploit weaknesses.
It’s what the temple industry did and does. It’s what the “mothering Sunday” marketing industry does. It’s what the always on instant news/social media does. It provides for “the sidelines”. The sidelines of us who are observers, are distanced, are too busy. Too busy to become involved … really involved. To become involved enough to love-without-condition.
Mothering Sunday is the day of the year we look at “mum” and say Thank You (for taking all the shit we give you every other day of the year).
Just like Easter Sunday. Just like Christmas. Just like Sundays. Just like we do so much of living.
I love the bible. But not the chrysalis we prefer to keep the bible within. I love mothers. My own mum no longer here. My wife who is. Our daughters who are. Each real.
It’s why I don’t love the industry of permanently chrysalis-wrapped-mother. A label and convenient distance that has little to do with reality.
My mother changed. My wife changes. Our daughters change. I change. We all change. The bible changes. Which is why this “Holy Mother of God” isn’t real. This “Mary” I still hear revered and prayed to today.
The table-turning seems to me a response to the “easy street” love we call “love”. An emotion we switch on and off. A hormone we allow to flow and then not. A “thing” we can be (or not). An object we are so distant from we now fight over why “love is never enough” … why love is “soppy” … why love is too soft.
Every mother I have ever known is made of steel.
THAT is love without condition. THAT is a mother.
A mother stronger than her creations. A mother more determined than the most focused of her creations. A mother who knows that love means letting go. Means setting free. Means so much more than a card once a year. A meal-out fitted in to a busy schedule. A bunch of cut flowers helpfully made easy by the flower industry.
A mother who knows ALL this … and yet appreciates these small gestures. Loves without condition even when her creations are “too busy” every other day. THAT is love.
Love is always the answer … now what’s your question?