Treasured Up

I’ve always wondered what it was like for Mary to raise Jesus as a child.  Was he perfect?  Did he cry?  Did Jesus get a time out when he was three?  Surely he did not try to stick his fingers in sockets, say the word “butt” all the time, and draw with Sharpie on the new dining room table Joseph just built.  Surely not.  But then what?  What were those growing days like?

I had always thought there was a void there.  That the Bible just skipped this topic entirely.  Not so.  Its there, and since I found it this Momma heart of mine has been full to. the. brim.

First time, you see Mary.  She is holding her sweet new precious baby boy and shepherds came to adore him.  He is The King!  Creation begins to praise Jesus and covet the moment that the Savior has come!  There she is.  Momma Mary holding her boy, just like we hold our babies, and then Scripture makes a point to tells us this:

 “But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.”  Luke 2:19

Moments, treasured up.

Second time, Jesus is growing up.  That baby is now a twelve year old boy and he is beginning to speak with power and wisdom.  Jesus is in the Temple when Mary finds him, you can picture the tears welling up in her eyes as she hears him teach  God’s word, “Listen to my boy!  He is amazing!”  Then, once more, Scripture tells us:

“But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.”  Luke 2:51

So what happened in those years from 0 to 30??  What did Mary do as she raised her sweet baby boy to be the Savior of all creation?  She treasured up the moments.  All the moments from mundane to marvelous and she sat, she pondered, and she treasured!

So many days the question pops in my mind, “What am I doing with my life??  What am I doing with these kids??”  And the temptation comes to doubt, and stress, and focus on areas of discontentment.  But Mary knew all days would not be good days!  Mary knew that her son came for a greater purpose than to just be her son and so in all those precious Mommy moments she KNEW she had to treasure them up!  To treasure and to savor the sweetness of having a child that you love.  That you adore and want great things for, but a child that is not ultimately yours.

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Since reading those verses in Luke I can’t help but insert that phrase into my everyday.  It sounds funny I know, but I even say it in third person in my mind (for emphasis of course because I am not dramatic at all) “And Maria treasured these moments and pondered them in her heart.” 

I want to be a woman who treasures!  I want to be a woman who watches my children, my family and ponders on all that is sweet and good.

I don’t want to be a woman who inserts pain into days in the form of worry and fear.

I don’t want to be a woman who misses out on the treasured moments because I was too busy.

I don’t want to be a woman who has to be right all the time.  Listen, remember when Mary found Jesus in the Temple?  He had pretty much run away!  Mary and Joseph had lost Jesus for three days!  Three stinking days???  And all I can picture was the level of crazy I put on when I lost David at Disney World for 60 seconds!  I mean I’m telling you they almost institutionalized me.  Thats for real.

There was Mary!  Lost son finally found and she didn’t get angry.  My goodness she had a right to get angry!  But how much of my own anger is a result of self preservation, self seeking, and my own need to be right?  Most of it.  Most of my anger is all of those things.

I don’t want to be that woman!  I want to be a woman who chooses the greater thing, to first treasure and ponder and then have a calm teachable (I would say ‘come to Jesus moment’ with your child but then again he was Jesus so I guess that wouldn’t work here).  Now, I am definitely not condoning losing children here, but in those moments when I do lose them, or lose my mind, or lose my cool I’ve got to remember that I believe in a God who sees it all.  I trust Him far better than I trust my own ability.

I want to be a woman who treasures it up.  Because I KNOW, not all moments are treasureable.  Some moments just down right kill you from the inside out.  Mary needed those moments to treasure, when she was staring at her son suffering and dieing on the cross, I picture all her treasured moments whirling through her head in a tornado of sadness and joy.  I picture all her treasured moments ministering to her heart after Jesus went up to heaven and her Momma heart was missing her boy.  I picture all her treasured moments staying with her all the way to heaven, where she got to hold her boy once more.

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We took a family hike on Mother’s Day and there were so many moments I was so tempted to throw in the towel.  Two seconds into the hike David soaked his shirt (on purpose or by accident only God does know), Sammy was crying because he was tired, and there were some loud growling noises right off the path we were walking.  But we persevered and I am so grateful we did, because right on the other side of the prickly thorn bushes of stress and unmet expectations was a clearing of pure joy and beauty.  Moments of chatting up the hill with Faith about praying when a moment of fear comes.  Aaron finding that just right walking stick that looked so stinking adorable.  David walking shirtless the entire time while holding his back pack, arm outstretched, in his hand (because clearly putting it ON his back did not make sense).  “And Maria treasured these things up and pondered them in her heart.”

I believe that I had a Popie who treasured up things in his heart.

All growing up my Popie would just love having all of his children and grandchildren around.  Swimming in the pool, playing in his home, eating his yummy homemade Italian food you could see it in his eyes: he loved his family.  I know for sure he treasured up moments.

Even over these past years, when his quality of life wasn’t so great and his body didn’t function all the ways that young and healthy bodies do, every single time I called him I would say, “Hey Popie, how are you doing today?”  Every single time, without fail, he would say, “Can’t complain Maria, can’t complain.”

I probably would have.  I think if I had been in the kind of discomfort he was in I would have done nothing BUT complain.  But on he went, knowing full well that he had much to be grateful for and I believe all his many treasured moments filled his heart with joy.

Popie went home on Friday.

I picture him dancing with Gideon, and Matthew and my cousin Robert.  I picture him free and full and happier than he has ever been!  I can’t be certain, I will find out myself someday, but I imagine that all his treasured moments went with him.  That all those treasured moments that you store in your heart go with you someday to add to the fullness of the joy that you experience when you are finally home.

Love you Popie!  I miss you already.  I will miss you standing at the stove, always cooking up something delicious.  I will miss the tears that you shed every time you thanked God for your family.  I will miss your summer time tan and your American Flag hat.  I will miss you, but I’ve got my treasured up moments in my heart and no one, nothing, no amount of pain, stress or suffering can ever steal away all that I have treasured up in my heart.

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Wasn’t Popie handsome?  This is how I remember him, always will.

3 thoughts on “Treasured Up

  1. Oh friend, how I thank God for your beautiful writing abilities! Your words touch my heart every time I read your blogs. Thank you for not taking for granted this gift He gave you! Now let me go “treasure up” doing some laundry for my hubby and kiddos that God so graciously blessed me with 😉

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