Mary Went the Distance…

Dear Reader:

I read an excerpt from Quinn Caldwell’s Christmas devotion ( All I Really Want) about the role of Mary in Jesus’ life and it made me pause and think about this epiphany more studiously. Basically it was the fact that lots of men and women knew Jesus and were a part of his life for a short or extended period of time…but it was only Mary who traveled the whole distance with her son.

“They call her the queen of Heaven. She earned it. She’s the only one. She’s the only one who was there at both the beginning and the end. Joseph wasn’t. Peter wasn’t. Judas wasn’t. The shepherds and the wise men and the animals weren’t. 

Not Caesar, Pilate, Caiaphas, the Centurion, the thieves, or the crowds. She was the only one who was there for his first breath and his last. The only one who went all the way with him. 

Do you think she knew? Do you think she knew when she cried out in labor what other cries she would cry? When she wrapped him in bands of cloth, do you think she knew she would tie his winding sheet as well? 

When she held him in her arms on that first silent night, do you think she could see the day when she would hold him in her arms on another one…and if she did, why did she do it?

There’s nothing so terrible as the death of one’s own child. It appears to go against the order of the universe. It is such a terrible thing to even contemplate that we don’t even give it a name. People who have lost their spouses are widows or widowers; people who have lost their parents are orphans. But for those who’ve lost a child, we have no name. We fall silent in the face of tragedy of that magnitude.

God knows what it is to lose a child just as surely as Rachel does. Nothing this side of heaven is going to take away the pain for those whose children have died, but at least we have a God who knows what it is like. It might not be enough. But it’s something.” 

So until tomorrow…Thank you Father for the people in our lives who go the distance with us…not just when things are going well…but when they aren’t. Thank you for people who “show up” for life…good or bad.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

It’s time to plant the pansies…the wonderful little bright flowers that bring color to winter…Luke helped piece the barrel back together again…another spring I will need to look into finding another one!

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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6 Responses to Mary Went the Distance…

  1. bcparkison says:

    Pansies are such ahappy little flower but around here don’t really come into there own until it is time to dug them out and make room for something else.
    The death of a child ,regardless of age, is really bad. My son was 19 and even 22 years later I choke up on occation. It is the call no parent ever wants to get. But God is good and we get through it by his grace..


  2. Becky Dingle says:

    I am so sorry Beverly to hear of your loss and even though time heals…it doesn’t forget….but in a way that is the beauty of it….your son will always be 19 in your memory forever. My brother David died at 21 and I watched mother having to go through that…and once again…God’s grace got her and the rest of the family through it too.


  3. Wonderful post today. I lost my son 12 years ago. He was 30 and his body rejected his new heart. But, I thank God for 30 years, eleven more than was predicted and he became a father. You brought up something that I had never realized: there is no name for a mother who loses a child. It never stops hurting, but through God’s grace and Mac’s children and grandchildren, he lives on.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      Yes…we must concentrate on the fact that the child that is gone still lives among us…we see him in another’s smile or wink or laughter…he is among you…there is no doubt.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. ambikasur says:

    Indeed there is no name for those who lose their children.. probably they should be called Rachel… I’m writing this in context with the episode where King Herod orders the murders of all boys below 2 years old only to get to Baby Jesus (Matthew 2:18)…
    Must pray for all who are going through this loss!


  5. Becky Dingle says:

    So true Ambika…and don’t we see these senseless massacres still in the news…genocides of men, women, and children….yes we must pray for those going through this type of loss.


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