Welcome friends...thanks for coming by. We're seeking beauty in all of creation... in our faith and our families; our art and our music; our crafts and kitchens, and even in our own backyard. We'll share a poem or a recipe, a picture or a memory; maybe a dream of how we wish our life could be. And though we acknowledge that the world can be harsh, we're keeping it pleasant in our little corner; endeavoring to keep the words from the Book of all Books: ...Whatsoever things are lovely; think on these things.

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Photo: Bee and thistle: Taken high in the Cascade Mountains where there is a bee buzzing on every thistle. by Debora Rorvig

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Pieta

My 36 year-old son Sam called me this week. He lives in Las Vegas.
"Hi Mom," he greeted me brightly.
"Hi Sam, how are you doing?" I asked.
"Well OK now. I was in the hospital for a couple of days last week. Turns out I had pneumonia. But I'm feeling better now."
Chills ran up and down my spine.
"Hospital! Last week! Why didn't you call me?"
"It wasn't life threatening and I didn't want to worry you." he responded.

Fellow mothers, I know that I needn't write another word to describe to you how I felt. You know. Not worry! Doesn't he know that I worry more when I don't hear from him  than when I do hear from him, even if the news is troubling?

Mothers need to know things. If the news is good, we want to know. If the news is bad, we MUST know.  Even if there is nothing we can physically do to change a situation, we MUST know. Even if it breaks our heart, we MUST know. There is no way to spare a mother from worry or anguish over her child's pain. Not knowing is the worst.

Perhaps this is why I was so moved this week in church; to the point of tears, as I listened to a song called Pieta; sung by our choir. The song was inspired by Michaleangelo's sculpture of the same name. It is a depiction of Mary, sitting at the base of Golgotha, cradling the crucified Jesus in her arms.

The crucifixion story rightly centers upon the agony of Jesus. But somehow this week I've found added dimension to the story as I think about how Mary must have suffered for her son. And how terrible must Jesus have felt to see his mother weeping at the foot of his cross? Just read this little excerpt from John:

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw his mother and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, "Woman, behold thy son!" Then saith he to the disciple, "Behold thy mother!" And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.   John 19: 25-27

Shortly after this, Jesus died. In his dying moments he saw to it that his mother was looked after.

And Mary stood by him to the end. We mothers totally understand Mary. We know that she could not leave. No matter how gruesome it was to see her son tortured, no matter how humiliating to see him hung naked on that cross, no matter how helpless she felt as she watched him labor to breathe his last breath...no matter---she would stay. 

Here at the cross we see the price of love. It cost Jesus his life. It cost Mary her son.

Dear friend, I beg you to walk up Golgotha's hill and stand near the cross, right there, next to Mary. See him in agony. Listen to his gracious words. Look into his anguished eyes. See what his love cost him...his love for you and  me.


Pieta by Michaelangelo (pieta, in Italian is translated 'pity')


Lyrics to Pieta
by Joseph M. Martin

(If your volume is up, you'll hear this lovely song playing on my blog.)
In the shadow of a manger, by a candle’s dancing flame, tender Mary holds her baby, and she breathes His holy name. “Jesus rest your weary head, close your weeping eyes.” As evening falls, she starts to sing a lullaby. “Lulay, lulay, peace be yours tonight.”



In the shadow of the temple, in a place so far from home, Mary sees her child of wonder, and she marvels how He’s grown. “Jesus rest your weary head, and think on gentle things.” With loving arms she holds her Savior and she sings, “Lulay, lulay, peace be yours tonight.”


In the shadow of Golgotha, underneath a darkened sky, Mary gently cradles Jesus. Through her tears she says goodbye. “Jesus rest your weary head. Your work on earth is done. And as the darkness falls, she whispers to her son, “Lulay, lulay, peace be yours tonight.”

***

5 comments:

ellen b. said...

Beautiful...

Corinne & Damo said...

Thank you for helping me think again (in a different way) of the amazing love of our suffering saviour! May He bless you today,
Corinne

Melissa Ann Goodwin said...

When my husband had a heart attack when we were on vacation (a long time ago now) he did not want me to tell his mother because he didn't want to worry her. We didn't tell her until we got home. I think she was pretty mad. Beautiful post.

Linda O'Connell said...

Lovely post and precious reminder of a mother's love and God's love for us. Thank you Debora.

Aunty Belle said...

What a lovely reflection on Mary's suffering. It did not make it any easier that she knew beforehand, as Simeon had foretold "And a sword shall pierce your own soul too."
(Luke 2:35)

There is a beautiful poignant hymn from the 13th century, Stabat Mater Dolorosa (The Sorrowful Mother Stands) that has inspired w0onderful symphonic versions--notably by Dvorak, Hadyn, Palestrina and Pergolesi. (you can find clips on You Tube or Itunes) It is so moving.

Very happy your own son is fine--a mercy. But he should have allowed you to participate--to at pray for him.

A very Blessed Easter to you and all your loved ones.

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