THE WOMAN WHO SUFFERED THE MOST
Many young girls dream of creating a beautiful and stable family to go along with a magical career when they come of age.
It is a noble and worthwhile dream for any young girl to have.
For a young girl named Mary, it was no different.
She desired the same thing most girls her age looked forward to.
She came a step closer to her dream when she met the man of her dreams and he proposed marriage.
Mary thought to herself, “with this man I can start a beautiful family that will bring me joy and fulfillment.”
With these lofty thoughts in her mind, you can imagine the excitement for Mary when a Heavenly visitor showed up unexpectedly and referred to her as ‘highly favored’.
The celestial messenger even talked about her becoming the mother to a son like no other.
A son who was going to be so powerful and great his conception would not even require the participation of the man she was about to make her husband.
To say Mary was on cloud seven after the message she received from the mysterious messenger would be a gross understatement.
Which girl on the planet will take such news lightly?
Mary was so elated she ran to tell her older cousin and stay with her a few months until her excitement was manageable before she returned home.
For Mary, a humble girl who considered herself ‘a lowly handmaid’ it was natural for her to expect that life was going to change instantaneously based on the good news delivered to her regarding the son she was about to bear.
She must have envisioned that all the dreams she entertained as a young girl were coming into fulfilment in grand style right before her bewildered eyes.
True to Mary’s expectations, her life did change.
The change in Mary’s life after the visit of the heavenly messenger was not the type of change many girls would have envisioned.
The first change Mary experienced was to be accused of infidelity by her fiancé.
Mary had to overcome being branded an unfaithful woman.
After overcoming that ordeal, Mary went into labor and found herself (the woman who was to be exalted above all women) giving birth to her divine son in an animal shelter.
Poor Mary gave birth while enduring the bleating of sheep standing next to her as well as the moo of calves looking for a spot to lay their heads.
“Maybe this is just a minor test before my son reveals his divinity and brings rest and honor to me,” Mary must have thought after giving birth to him under circumstances only fit for animals.
“How do I tell my friends and family I gave birth to my divine son in an animal shelter?” Mary must have wondered to herself.
“I hope this humiliation is short-lived so I can begin to enjoy the benefits of being the mother of an epic child.”
Unfortunately for Mary, the humiliation and pain were not short-lived.
They were just the beginning.
A deranged monarch heard of the birth of the divine child in the city and so the king who could not bear the thought of anyone in his kingdom becoming a threat to his rule decided to go on a murderous spree, killing all the two year old and under male children in the city with the hope of eliminating the future threat to his throne.
Mary escaped with her son unharmed but had to live with the guilt of being the mother of the boy whose birth caused so many other women to lose their sons.
Mary’s heart was heavy.
As the boy grew, Mary continued to hope things will get easier.
Things did not get easy for her.
Things got worse for Mary.
Word got to Mary that her child was causing trouble in town. Her son was going about insulting the elder statesmen of the city.
People of repute and high office were being called ‘white-washed tombs’ and ‘hypocrites’ by Mary’s divine son.
Word also got to Mary that her son’s choice of friends was troubling.
Her son who was supposed to bring glory to her was roaming about in Galilee and other desert regions with a bunch of dysfunctional fishermen, tax collectors and even prostitutes and calling them his friends.
Mary and her family had become an object of scorn from her neighbors and community.
No one wanted to associate with the 'filthy Nazarene family' whose son was disrespecting the elders and ‘men of noble repute’ within their city.
Mary was ostracized by her friends and neighbors because of her son's behavior.
When Mary tried to talk to her son to ‘tone it down’ a little bit, he turned around and asked the crowd which was gathered around him, “who is my mother? Who are my brothers? My mother and brothers are those who do my Father’s will.”
Mary was frustrated beyond measure.
She feared the worst might befall her son due to his defiant attitude towards authorities and the city leaders.
A mother’s worst fear is to outlive her child.
Mary did not want that to happen to her.
There is no greater tragedy than a parent having to bury her child.
Mary not only had to bury her son, she also had to watch him brutally killed.
Mary’s worst fears were realized when her son was suddenly seized, tried in a sham court, and quickly sentenced to death.
Mary watched with her own eyes as her son was made to carry the object that was going to be used to kill him.
An object too heavy for him to carry and which caused him to fall multiple times due to the excessive weight on him.
Mary continued to watch as her son was tethered to the heavy object via long nails, hoisted up into the air, pierced with a spear and given vinegar to drink when the dying man asked for a sip of water prior to his death.
That is the story of the young girl with lofty dreams and who called herself ‘blessed’ after her divine visitation.
Was she blessed?
For she was found worthy to suffer like no other woman so that when she receives her crown,
the crown which will be greater than that received by any other person other than her son himself, no one will question why her crown is the greatest.
For the woman who suffered the most deserves the greatest crown.