FENTON, MI – Motherhood is very rewarding, but it can also be very demanding. Scripture shares that Eve was the first example of a mother. Poor Eve had many firsts! She was the first to encounter Satan, the first to be tempted, and worst of all she was the first to sin.
Because of her sin, she was also the first woman to go through a painful childbirth all by herself. No doctor, no one coaching her on correct breathing techniques and definitely nothing for the pain. But, the rewards were great. She had her precious son in her arms to raise into the man of God he was intended to become. Then came son number two. She experienced all the pain as before as well as the great reward in the end of holding another precious son in her arms. We are not exactly sure how many children Eve had, but Genesis does tell us she had other children. You have to give this first mother some credit in rearing her children. She didn't have any examples or books to read on how to cope with a newborn that cries all night, or how to handle temper tantrums, little girls that cry over everything (and I mean everything), or how to deal with hormonal teenagers. No, she had to learn on her own. In spite of all the hardships and demands children can bring at times, I'm sure Eve had wonderful moments with all her children, as well.
But we can never forget, Eve was also the first mother to suffer heartache from her children. What heart terror just knowing that one of your sons had became so angry with his brother that he had killed him. Eve had the heartbreak of burying her firstborn son, but also the heartbreak of understanding the dreadful impact sin has on one's life. She lost both sons that day. Scripture doesn't give us much insight into her life, but it had to be difficult for her to bear.
In contrast, our 4-year-old granddaughter, Kailyn, was visiting at Christmas one year when we were making our annual Christmas traditional birthday cake for Jesus. When someone would come around she would announce, "Christmas is Jesus' birthday and we're going to make Him a cake." Then she got very thoughtful and proclaimed, "But He is up in the sky and cannot come down to eat the cake, so we have to eat it."
We do receive many blessings because of Jesus and some of them are as sweet as birthday cake. One of my sweetest blessings God has given me in this life is being the mother of my two sons and the grandmother of my six beautiful granddaughters. One of those joyous times came when the next to the oldest granddaughter, Sarah, was five years old. She was at my house spending the night, as she did on many occasions, and was doing one of her favorite things that she loved to do at my house, which was swim in my very large garden tub with her sister. On this one occasion, she had pulled the stopper to let the water run down the drain, so I picked up her sister to dry her off and get her something to eat. I could hear Sarah playing in the now waterless bathtub so I believed all was harmless. I kept checking on her, but didn't want to stop her fun as she was laughing, rolling around in the bottom of the tub and sliding down the back of the tub, as if she were having the time of her life. When she called me to come get her out I wondered then why she didn't just get out on her own like she always did. I quickly found out why she couldn't get out on her own. When I went to lift her out of the tub she slid right through my hands. She was one great big slime ball! You see, I had left the "Body" Baby Oil on the edge of the tub and she was just beginning to read. She looked at me when she saw the look on my face and quickly said, "It says body, so I used it for my body" and was so pleased with herself. Yes, it was for the body, but not half a bottle at one time. Do you know baby oil does not wash out? I washed her hair three times in dawn dishwashing soap and she still went to church the next day with very oily hair. It took over a week for the baby oil to wear off.
So we may not be going through a lot of "firsts" like Eve, but we are mothers who experience the same up and down emotions, feelings, childbirth, motherhood, child rearing, and then even becoming grandmothers as Eve did. We may not be the first mother, but in our "mothering", who is first in our lives? When we keep Christ first in our lives, that's when we can become the mother he intended us to become. When we keep Christ first in our lives, then we are able to deal with the temptations that come our way. When we keep Christ first, He will give us the strength to become the best mothers we were meant to be. When we keep Christ first, then we can rest in Him when we go through the worst heartache we have ever experienced. My question for you, “Is Christ first in your life?”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sabrina Patterson, wife, mother, grandmother, Bible teacher, and conference leader. Genuine lover of the Lord. Born and raised in Jal, New Mexico. She lived all her married life in Texas and Florida. She is the wife of Pastor Tim Patterson, Executive Director of the Baptist State Director of Michigan.