One of the most natural and strongest feelings in nature is the love of a mother to her child. On Valentine’s Day, we celebrate love. Most people think of the celebration as between you and your partner. However, love on this day is celebrated for all, and today we talk about the love to your child. In Arabic, they say “A mother is sacrifice”. True, in all sense of the word. You as mothers and as children know that from the time you get pregnant through delivery and childhood to adolescence and beyond, you are about sacrifice. And for that, you are to be celebrated. But this article is not about mother’s day, it is about the love of a child.
The truest love is the one given without expectations, rewards or conditions. And whereas we may start of like that when our children are very very young, we change and so does our love as they grow older. As very young kids, they are helpless and attach to us with all their might. We are their solace and their comfort, their strength and their security. With their growth comes lack of respect and discipline, disappointments and heart aches, let downs and acts of selfishness. Our love gets tested, and we start putting conditions and discover that the sweet innocent kids can hurt us. We feel betrayed, sad, disappointed and confused. But then we remember that we did this to our parents also. It is, after all, part of growing up, right!
I am not here to tell you how to love, but to talk about the power of love. In a sense, this is what we do to our maker. We make mistakes, so many of them that He has sent prophets and His son. And He has done this so many times, and if you look at the world now, you would never believe that we were guided, at all, in our history. But His love for us is the ideal love. It is the one that transcends our transgressions, forgives with hope, understands with patience, and encourages with faith. SO why does our love for our children changes? Well, first and foremost, because we start putting ourselves in the picture of importance. Many parents expect their children to be grateful and demand that their efforts be recognized. They know that what they have done for their children has to be appreciated, and if it is not, then the kids are a total disappointment. Further, parents seem to think that children actually OWE them! Yes, since we bore them, raised them, paid for their education and belongings and necessities, that we DESERVE a seat their life table and have a say in what they should or should not do. And if you have never had those feelings, never saw anyone act this way and experienced these words then you are truly blessed. But most of us have heard our parents demand recognition, have heard ourselves do the same and will hear our children do the same. That kind of love is a love that expects things in return, that demands its recognition and that believes in its righteous entitlement to children’s respect, obedience and trust. This love is not celebrated on Valentine’s day. This love is not the true selfless love of a parent. Mind you I am not talking about discipline here, I am talking about the “rewards and expectations” of parental love. And quite honestly, the only reward is that we are privileged to be parents and that we have helped raise one of God’s children.
On this day of love, remember that we aspire for the greatest love and to be the greatest loving moms. Think about the love of Mary, think your love to your infant and how you wished at that time that he or she only be healthy and nothing else is demanded or expected. That is the state of love we celebrate, and that is the true meaning of “A mother is sacrifice”.