I can’t believe another year has begun…and we are past the middle of the first month already. Maybe it’s because Christmas hasn’t quite been over for us yet. We just had our family Christmas with my in-laws this past Saturday, and this coming weekend was supposed to be Mike’s holiday party at work, but because of all the snow they are calling for it is now going to be at the end of February. So, I guess the holidays are going to last a bit longer for us.
Have you ever had a year where you just couldn’t get into Christmas…maybe even felt a little sad? I had one of those this year. I’m not even really sure why this year bothered me. I know people who struggle with depression during the holidays and although I miss my loved ones who are no longer on this earth every holiday, I don’t usually get the blues. I didn’t get as much quite time with God and that may be why…but for whatever reason…I was pretty weepy…and certain Christmas songs sure didn’t help.
One of my all time favorite Christmas songs is Mary Did You Know? written by Mark Lowry. Right now my favorite version is by Pentatonix.
As a mother, it isn’t hard for me to connect to this song. I try to imagine how Mary must have felt raising Jesus. There is a scene in the movie Passion of the Christ that will forever remain with me. It’s when Jesus is walking with the cross and he falls. Mary is in the crowd and as she watches him fall she has flashbacks to when he was a toddler learning to walk. They show him falling as a toddler and then they go back to the scene of him as an adult. That scene hits me right in the heart. Our children are our children until the day we die…no matter how old they get, and when they hurt…we hurt.
As I listened to the song this year, I couldn’t help but wonder what life would have been like if I’d known sooner that my son was gay.
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day walk on water?
Lesa did you know that your baby boy would one day discover he was gay?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters?
Lesa did you know that your baby boy would be called an abomination?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Lesa did you know that your baby boy would be discriminated against? (there are currently 115 anti-LGBT bills that have been introduced in state and local legislation)
Mary did you know that your baby boy would calm the storm with his hand?
Lesa did you know that your baby boy would have preachers calling for his death from their pulpits. (these aren’t outlandish Westboro Baptist type churches – they are every day churches – I won’t put their names here because they could be a trigger for someone, but if you want more info you can contact me.)
Would I want to know these things as I held my baby boy? No, I have to say that I’m glad I didn’t. As much as I wish I could have prepared him for what he was about to face, I wasn’t prepared to handle it back then. I, of course, wish I could have protected him from the pain he went through with the coming out process, but I know that it has shaped him into the strong person he is now. I am a different person now having gone though this with him. I shudder to think of how I may have handled it if I had known back then. (please understand that I am not comparing raising a gay son to raising Jesus so don’t email me about that – smile).
There were a lot of engagements happening this Christmas…and maybe that was part of my sadness. It’s a reminder that my son may not have the same joy of that occasion. Yes, he can get married at the moment…but…
Will he have a clerk refuse to sign his marriage license?
Will he have a baker refuse to make his cake?
Will he have a florist refuse to create his flower arrangements?
Will the venue find a reason for him not to have his reception where he would like it?
These are the kind of things that our kids are faced with on a daily basis.
So, these have been my holiday musings. I hope one day I won’t have such things to ponder. I share them with you as a reminder that there is still work to be done. Because whether or not we agree on things, the one thing I know for sure is that everyone should be loved.
There’s a line in the song that pertains to Mary and myself:
This child that you delivered, will soon deliver you.
My son has delivered me from the box I was living in, and had God stuffed in there with me, and helped me love others unconditionally. I am forever grateful for that and it makes the journey a little less painful.
So let me ask you…
Do you know…that you are loved. If you don’t, contact me.
Love matters…but how we love matters even more.