In Defense of Motherhood: Pass the Swords


In her amazing reflection on the horror playing out across news and social media streams this summer as Planned Parenthood is exposed, Sarah Clarkson has called what’s happening a “Failure of Imagination.

Ann Voskamp adds that it is both a failure of community and “a failure of humanity: failing a human being in crisis and a human being in utero.”

The images rolling across my stream turn my stomach, turn my head, turn my heart pale, compel me to turn off the screens.

I want it to all go away.  How can such horror be happening across this country—over a million times each year, babies’ lives ended before light of day is seen?  How instead of a warmed blanket and mother’s arms are these precious lives met and ended by salt water and cold steel?

It may be the end of a hot summer, but it’s been a season of chilling headlines.

We see evidence of those who see babies as intrusions rather than gifts.  As “merchandise, not miracle,” as Sarah has written.

We are a consumer culture.  And babies?  Someone has discovered they can be bought and sold in pieces.

It’s time to pay attention and see the truth, moms, if we’ve been in denial:  Motherhood itself is under attack.

The dragon still stands before the pregnant woman, waiting to devour her child.  Satan is not fond of the image of God reproduced over and over—his goal is to debase, to tear apart, to mangle the potential of each and every reproduction.  To get to the child who is the newest image-bearer he must go through the double-image bearing one, the mother.  And he does it sometimes with fear and lack, sometimes with selfishness and ambition: always with whatever means he can find.

We need a revival of motherhood.

Where’s the good news?

We are accosted daily, it seems, with evidence that we’ve lost this war.  Don’t believe it.  Not all is lost.  There is still a remnant of those who believe the truth, who believe in the value of unique human lives, the assertion of scripture that each one has been formed in the womb by God, Himself.

I see glimpses.  I see it in the brave mamas celebrating positive pregnancy tests—the first and the seventh.  I see it in the beautiful photographs of tiny fingers and toes proudly displayed by newly blessed parents.  I see it as older siblings pass precious tiny bundles around, each watching the clock for “their turn” to arrive.

And perhaps the most promising bit of hope?  It’s in the next generation of mothers. I caught a glimpse this weekend as I attended one of the most beautiful weddings I’ve ever seen.  Throughout the ceremony, references to the couple’s future children—were replete.  This is a young couple full of love for God and a heart for worship, now a family which will hold the banner of Christ high.  And they aren’t alone.  On this day, they were surrounded by many, many friends with hearts much like their own.  It is within that circle and those like it, of young people embracing truth and life, that this world’s hope lies.

Motherhood is not dead.  Not everyone sees children as mere intrusions or merchandise: there are those who still see hoped-for miracles.

At the rehearsal dinner, the bride’s father told stories of her as a child.  He related how as a girl with three older brothers, she’d had to learn to be tough.  One day her mother happened upon her sitting in a rocking chair serenely rocking her doll … with a plastic ninja sword protruding from the back of her shirt where she’d tucked it–just in case.

Walking over to the chair and smiling down at the determined four-year old, she’d  said, “Honey, usually mamas don’t carry ninja swords while they rock their babies.”

Hannah looked up and replied matter-of-factly, “This one does.”

And perhaps this is what is necessary in days such as these; a brave and beautiful motherhood.  A motherhood that would fight to defend all that is sacred and precious and true.

Pass the swords.  I’ve got your back.