Sometimes, life in the age of coronavirus feels like it’s doing nothing less than asking us to save our people.
Of course, as moms, we know we can’t; saving is always and only God’s job.
But it feels as though He has given us a historic role to play this season, much like He gave the Biblical Queen Esther.
Comfortingly, she wasn’t all that crazy about it, either.
She didn’t ask for the job.
She didn’t want it.
She balked at it, at first.
And when she finally accepted it, she did it with sort of a “well, this might be the death of me, but if it is, so be it” attitude.
You’ve got to love her.
“Who knows,” Esther’s cousin suggests to her when he’s trying to talk her into taking the job, “but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14).
Our maternal positions may not be royal, but we have been put in them on purpose, for a purpose.
We might be reluctant.
We might be uncertain.
We might think what we’re being asked to do will be the death of us.
But Esther accepted her calling for the good of her people, and for such a time as this, we can accept our calling for the good of ours.
All these generations later, Esther’s reluctant decision to go where she didn’t want to go and do what she didn’t feel qualified to do is celebrated and recounted as an example of faithfulness and bravery.
We may demur at the suggestion we would take on the enormous challenge set before us in hopes future generations might speak well of us. But if we accept this commission as nothing less than a royal appointment by the King of the universe, it is no conceit to hope that future generations might live well and serve well and love well because of it.
The quote “God couldn’t be everywhere, so He created mothers” (attributed variously to Rudyard Kipling and a Jewish proverb) gets God’s omnipresence wrong, of course, but maybe it lends itself to this revision: God is everywhere, and one way He is is in the person of mothers.
When we don’t check out.
When we don’t give more weight to what we don’t know than what we do.
When we don’t suppose we have to figure out how on earth we’ll do the next month (or nine) and instead ask God to help us do each one day.
When, right in the deep and dark of our weariness, uncertainty, fear, and flat-out don’t-feel-like-it, we view ourselves as image-bearers of Abba.
Not haughtily but humbly. Not because there isn’t any other way for God to preserve our children to the race, but because He thinks highly enough of us to give us the chance to partner with Him in the cause.
God will not force our hand. But if we extend it, He’ll reach out and take it and lead us along so that, following Him, we can lead the people we love.
In such a time as this.
For such a time as this.