Psalm 69 - Jaclyn Toscas - Mother's Day Collection Day 8
Answer me, O LORD, for your steadfast love is good;
according to your abundant mercy, turn to me.
Hide not your face from your servant,
for I am in distress; make haste to answer me.
Draw near to my soul, redeem me;
ransom me because of my enemies!
I’m thinking of you so much today. Honestly, you’re never far from my mind. I may not know your name but, oh, how well I know the ache inside of you.
Maybe, like me, before you entered this season, Mother’s Day was simply the special day we stopped to celebrate the person we owe our lives to. A day we intentionally offered our love and appreciation for the ocean of unnoticed sacrifices mom made for us. It was a day for flowers and brunch. A day for making our best homemade creation because what would mom possibly love more than something made by the hands she gave birth to? It was a joyful day.
Until it wasn’t.
I remember standing outside my sister’s house (a mom of five, herself) several years ago and receiving big hugs from her and my mom as we wrapped up Mother’s Day weekend. Homemade cards and presents and toasts had been given to these two mammas. For me? Looks of sympathy. A cautious toast to “moms to-be.” Words of hope mixed with nagging fear: “I’m praying by next Mother’s Day that you will be….”
And so began a growing sense of emptiness for the role that I was NOT playing. It surfaced an increasingly hollow feeling of being “less than.”
The most unexpected thing? It was not for a lack of trying. Or desiring. Or praying. Or hoping.
The words of Psalm 69 from The Message spoke to me like healing balm from an understanding friend:
“Come close, God. Get me out of here…
You know how I feel kicked around. I’m broken. Flat on my face. Reduced to nothing.
I looked in vain for one friendly face. Not one. I couldn’t find one shoulder to cry on.”
It captured the loneliness. The emptiness. The feeling of being misunderstood. The heartbreak. The lament. David knew the feeling.
It’s no wonder that happy-clappy Christianity may not be ministering to you in this season. It can feel tone-deaf when you’re mourning. Draw near to the Lord with your lament. Just as David did. Our God is not surprised. He is a God who comes up close to suffering. He is not threatened. He is a man of sorrows and well-acquainted with grief. Ours is a God who felt exactly as the words of the Psalm describe. And Ours is a God who longs for you to come near to Him with it ALL.
Come near & rescue me, God!
The Mother’s Day when my mom and sister were hoping for “next year’ for me was four years ago. There is something searing about a mental time frame. It sticks with you. No matter how many times we hear that God’s timing is best. The waiting hurts.
Whatever the length of time you’ve been waiting, I know you’ve had days like this…. motherhood announcements and gender reveals all up and down your social media feed, every friend telling you she’s pregnant, random strangers asking if you have kids, the television playing a constant loop of Pampers commercials, walking outside into a parade of baby strollers, pregnancy ads popping up on your phone, baby bumps chasing you down, and even the safest places can feel like a betrayal. Like the countless Bible verses with metaphors about birth pangs, labor, nursing, and motherhood. Come on Lord. Help your daughter out.
In these moments, let’s remember the words of Psalm 69. Come near and rescue me Lord! That can become our quick prayer to Him in every situation that feels like a slap in the face. I’m broken and flattened and nobody seems to get it!
When it feels like the whole world is included in something that we’re not, who will meet us in our loneliness? Who will stop the bleeding and turn what feels like a chipping away at our heart into beautiful transformation? It’s Jesus. Beautiful Jesus.
May our struggle transform us into His likeness. The One who is always looking for the person on the fringes. So we, like He, can be the ones to say, “I see you” to another aching soul. Just like we’re yearning to hear this Mother’s Day.
He is speaking those words to you in your struggle. Just as He was to me. It’s who He is. The constant Redeemer. Someone who loved everyone on the fringes. He made a specific point over and over to say, I see you. To draw near to them. And the people saw Jesus. In a lot of cases, they were searching and chasing Him down. Are we?? May you run after Him today and find your Rescuer and your Redeemer. The only One who can pick you up from your flattened place and set you back on a path toward hope.
Name: Jaclyn Toscas
Where to find me: @jaclyntoscas (instagram) Jaclyn Lesch Toscas (FB)
Jaclyn Toscas serves as a contributor on the content team of Waiting in Hope. She grew up in the Houston suburb of The Woodlands and lives in the Washington DC area with her husband of six years. Through her 5-year journey of infertility, IVF and loss, she has discovered great passion in helping women rediscover God’s goodness through their pain.
Hi Friend, Ashlee here. Below is a song that I encourage you to listen to. I thought it would be a beautiful way to enter into worship as you begin your day and dwell on the Psalm above. Praying that you would feel the closeness and peace of the Lord as you walk forward today.