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For Her and All Her Children

Year after year, I flip,

as one season feels like eight,

It's Sunday night, and pictures of my kids

are keeping me up too late.

Their toothless grins tell me all the things

I couldn't see back then,

It's almost cruel now to recognize

all that should have been.

I study their faces and clearly see

how quickly time slips by,

Then, the voice of my heart rises to speak,

and I let myself cry.

I cry, remembering when I wished

all those moments away,

Not all the time, but more than once,

even a hundred times one day.

Didn't I know how sacred time was?

Didn't I know I'd feel this way?

I did know. I knew it then.

Just like I know it right now, today.

Knowing and time are strange like that,

a conflict at war inside,

Forever pulling me back and forth

in a pattern deep and wide.

No matter the gravity I come to know

of this gift that I've been given,

I can never seem to reconcile

the blessing and pain I'm living.

Must my children be the casualties

of this brokenness within?

It feels wrong. It is wrong.

It's not the way it should've been.

But my grief over reality

will not change this age-old curse,

As labor pains of bearing children

continue long after birth.

Their expanding and constricting

will always intersect,

Not one can simply walk away

without a single effect.

Oh, the pain ever before me,

whether I numb it or embrace,

Changes not the fact a part of me

will always need to efface.

For in the place where my children were

secretly knit and woven,

Remains the unpredictable rhythm

that continually slays me open.

Sliding down my cheek, my tears join in

the cries of mother's past,

Like them, I willingly choose to journey

this long, uncertain path.

Though time evaporates like a mist

and joy swells deep with sorrow,

I continue, as they rise and crash,

in my every single tomorrow.

And when the waves threaten to break,

I'll let them break me open,

And pray that when I lack in love,

I labor in love, rejoicing.

For I am not defined by failure,

nor am I defined by fear,

But only by the grace of God

who holds me, and my children, near.

The mistakes I made, the woman I was,

behind that now still frame,

Was needed and necessary for today

to boldly now proclaim.

The love so wide it came to save

and covers all that's been,

Is forever enough, for me, for her,

and all her children.

And He who keeps on pouring

grace over like a fountain,

Continues beckoning me to remember

there's no effort to amount in.

For time is not mine to keep,

nor is love mine to define,

But they are His----they're always His,

and they both mysteriously refine.

So, I dare to keep on seeking

the light of my savior's face,

And let my tears unite with his

through grace's steady wake.

He labored like me, in blessing and pain,

to bring forth life anew,

Oh, how sweet is his love for me, for her,

and all her children too!


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