How do you feel about Mother’s Day?

I invite you to read a transparent, heart-tug message from Debbie for Women Walking with Jesus.

Woman walking cross country and trail in autumn forestBy Debbie Petras

Each May a special day is celebrated. Mother’s Day is a big deal; as it should be. After all, mothers are special people who often don’t always get the thanks and recognition they deserve. But do I dare ask a question? Are you one of the women who dreads Mother’s Day? It’s supposed to be a wonderful day. There are so many days to celebrate diverse groups of people and certainly mothers are to be thanked and shown appreciation. I applaud that. But I have a confession to make. For many years, I dreaded Mother’s Day.

Mother’s Day was a painful reminder of what I didn’t have and deeply desired; a child of my own. Every year when Mother’s Day rolled around, I dreaded the moment when the pastor asked all the mothers to stand while the congregation honored them and clapped. Of course, I would join in the deserved applause and smile. But inside my heart was breaking.

I know I’m not alone. So many women experience infertility. Many, like me, have endured surgeries in an attempt to correct the problem. Maybe you’ve been unable to carry a baby to term. My sister experienced 13 miscarriages and was never able to conceive. Maybe you’re single but are longing for the time when you’ll be married and start a family of your own. But time ticks by and you’re still alone.

I know mothers who also dread Mother’s Day. The idealized Hallmark moments just don’t seem to happen in their lives. Not all children, whether young or all grown up, are sensitive to the needs, hopes and desires of their mother.

Although there will always be a bit of an ache in my heart for what I never had, I’m at a place in my life where I no longer dread Mother’s Day. I still have no children of my own. But in so many ways I’ve been comforted as I realize how much Jesus loves me. He knows the desires of my heart, even better than I do.

Psalm 139:1-4 (NIV) says: “You have searched me, LORD, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely.”

And then I love this Scripture that has brought so much comfort to me.

Isaiah 54:1-2 (NIV) “Sing, barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband,” says the LORD. “Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.”

I’m now well past the age of childbearing but I see how God has comforted me and not forgotten my desire. When I suddenly had to return to work, He provided me with a job working with preschool children. Now I get to spend my weekdays with three and four year old children and I love it. As I step onto our school grounds I often hear shouts from the back seat of cars as children yell “Hi Miss Debbie”. Their hugs and love brighten my morning. I smile as I’m reminded that God is so faithful.

Jesus is my strength. He has heard my prayers and tears. How thankful I am that He knows just what I need and when I need it. He can do that for you too.

debbieDebbie Petras is originally from Long Island, New York but she and her husband Greg now live in Arizona.  She worked as a cardiovascular nurse for many years but currently works with preschool children.  Debbie was greatly influenced by her Christian grandparents but spent many years living a life that didn’t reflect her belief in Jesus.  At her grandmother’s funeral, Debbie felt the Lord speaking softly to her heart. She returned to church and began reading her Bible.  Life began to change as her love for Jesus grew and began to spill over to others.  Matthew 5:16 became one of her favorite Scriptures “…let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” She enjoys sharing her faith and writing on her blog Heart Choices as she inspires and encourages others.

13 Responses to How do you feel about Mother’s Day?

  1. Debbie,

    The sharing of your heart so openly and tenderly will encourage many women. The name of your blog fits you perfectly, Heart Choices because that’s exactly how you live–choosing to walk with a heart for God even in the midst of painful situations and that which is out of your control; choosing to trust Him, His plan and His purpose for your life.

    God has given you many children to love in those precious preschool kids and they love Miss Debbie for sure! What a legacy you’re creating. Praying for you!

    Love you.

  2. While you may never have conceived a child of your own, Debbie, I can see how the Lord crafted a unique “mother’s heart” within you. It’s obviously put to good use in your present work experience, but I know it runs much deeper than even that. I especially value your tenderness, which is clearly evident right here as you walk it out with Jesus. Such a beautiful, hopeful post!

    I love you, sweet friend,

  3. I think of my daughter too who wanted to marry and have children but it didn’t happen and now she is beyond the age of childbearing. And how I would have loved grandchildren but never will have them. I’m so glad that at SBC they have all women stand, not just mothers, and all women are honored. You are an inspiration to so many people and those children at the school are so blessed to have you in their lives.
    Love and hugs,

    • How wonderful that the pastor at SBC is sensitive to this issue, Thank you for your kind comments. Yes, your daughter also lives with the loss of a dream but I do believe the Lord is the One who can comfort us in His unique ways. Thanks for commenting friend.

  4. Thank you Debbie for sharing your “Mother’s heart” in this post!! I have two people very close to me….one of my best friends and my daughter….who desperately wanted children but will never be able to see that desire come to fruition. And I know from their experience that they both either did or still do hate Mother’s Day for the very reasons you cited. Because of them I have tried to use more discernment in what I say. I have never been in your shoes but I’m sure that only GOD can heal the heart of barrenness. It has to be very tough! But you have shown that God is faithful and that you love Him still. May God bless you!

    • You’re so right Marilyn. Only God can heal the heart of barrenness. He is so faithful too. I appreciate the fact that you are sensitive to those close to you who are dealing with this issue. You are very kind.

  5. Debbie: Thank you so much for sharing with depth and transparency not only your heart, but the heartbeat of many women walking amongst those of us who have no idea their pain/heartache. No doubt your words will help heal the hearts of many.
    Blessings, hugs, and prayers,

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